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ruthless compassion
I love this poem a lot:

Autobiography in Five Short Chapters, by Portia Nelson

Chapter I
I walk down the street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I fall in
I am lost . . . I am helpless
It isn't my fault
It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter II
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
But, it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter III
I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in . . . it’s a habit.
My eyes are open. I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.

Chapter IV
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

Chapter V
I walk down another street
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