In the past month or so, a number of people i know are suffering in a number of ways e.g. cancer, allergies, etc. Especially when a child is concerned, i am inclined to 'take on' their suffering. Despite everything i do to help, i am compelled to take more on for them as i would like their suffering to reduce or end.

How does one help or take on the sufferings of others? This is especially so when in the company of children under the age of 4.

  • 4
    You're already doing it. You take on the sufferings of others by helping them.
    – beginner
    Jun 17, 2015 at 21:28
  • 5
    By helping them however you can, and by being an example to them through your practice.
    – Ryan
    Jun 17, 2015 at 22:03

1 Answer 1


Lay practitioner here. I expect more educated answers will follow. But for me, I don't think a person can exactly "take on" the suffering of another. It is up to each of us to work our way through the mental delusions that permit our own suffering. Having said that, the peace we exude has, I believe, an effect on those around us. Just as when we act with anger in our hearts, our actions are likely to reflect this mental state, when we act with peace in our hearts, our actions will reflect that, and will have a positive effect on those with whom we interact.

One way to look at it is that instead of the view that "this person is suffering," think that, "there is suffering." The fact that it's "their" suffering or "your" suffering is illusion. There is simply suffering, and the work "you" do to reduce the causes of suffering has an effect on all suffering.

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