Does the word 'empathy' apply to Empaths?

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Yaji
@yaji
2 years ago
69 posts

Sometimes I read that people relate 'empathy' with Empaths, but the meaning of 'empathy' is when a person imagines what it feels like to be in another person's shoes (situation).

I don't think so because for us Empaths, we don't imagine but we actually feel it.


updated by @yaji: 01/19/17 06:01:47AM
Trevor Lewis
@trevor-lewis
2 years ago
272 posts

You've really already got it!

The way I explain it is (and this is only a cut and paste of what is essentially a paraphrase of what you wrote)...

Being empathic (or empathetic) means a personal identification with the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of others. Tell me about what you are going through and I can empathize if I have gone through the same, or very similar, life experience.

Being an empath, and especially being an impaired empath, means taking on the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of others as if they were ones own even before there is any conscious awareness of what is happening and regardless of whether I have gone through the same or similar life experience or not.

Yaji
@yaji
2 years ago
69 posts

Are you a healer?

Trevor Lewis
@trevor-lewis
2 years ago
272 posts

OK! Lets get the semantics out of the way. No-one heals anybody else. There are no healers of other people. There are only people who help to facilitate other people to heal themselves. So, being pedantic, there are no healers, there are only facilitators of healing. That said, if we are all agreed that when we talk about the word healer we mean a facilitator of healing, it is easier to use one word rather than three.

So, yes! I'm a healer :-)
You might enjoy my personal story at http://empathcommunity.eliselebeau.com/profiles/blogs/we-are-all-connected-how-i-came-to-recognize-myself-as-an-empath

Lotusfly
@lotusfly
2 years ago
410 posts
Hi Yaji,I believe Elise (the creator of this community) said on her website that the word Empath was first used as a label for Deanna Troy, a highly sensitive character in Star Trek (the Next Generation series) who could strongly feel other beings' emotions. I personally haven't researched the origin of the word though.I do think it's clear that the name Empath was originally based on the word empathy. This is the dictionary definition of empathy...The psychological identification with or vicarious experiencing of the feelings, thoughts, or attitudes of another.It sounds generally like what empaths experience at the basic level, just concise and "watered down."A little analogy to explain this a bit more... A psychiatrist once told me that everyone experiences some degree of anxiety...just the extent of the anxiety (i.e. intensity, duration, frequency, etc.) determines whether the anxiety is problematic.Likewise, I believe, everyone experiences empathy (or has the ability to), but people experience it on different levels (and some block it or not show it). People who feel that their empathy is stronger than most, usually consider themselves to be empaths :)Just a different view, but I hope it's helpful!Loving light~Lotusfly
Yaji
@yaji
2 years ago
69 posts

The first part helps because it's new information to me, but the second half is not really because I am a psych major, so I know about it.

What the psychiatrist told you also goes with other negative emotions such as stress and depression in DASS (depression anxiety stress scale test).

I just don't agree because if I remember back in middle high school, a counselor took over the class for a while and explained the definition of empathy and sympathy.
It's the same thing like what you posted but simplified to make it easier to understand.

Even at that time with that they said and all to this day, it's still not the same as what Empaths can do/go through.

So if I hear people use the word 'empathy', I will go with the psychological definition and not relate it with Empaths. (people have empathy but they are not Empaths)

Different opinion...nothing wrong (I guess). :)

Karen2
@womanwhowalks
2 years ago
783 posts
Actually...I 1st heard the word empath in the 1st star trek series...with William Shatner..lol...
Lotusfly
@lotusfly
2 years ago
410 posts
Was Deanna in that series, Karen? I thought she first appeared in the Next series...
Lavender&rose
@lavenderrose
2 years ago
82 posts

A lot of empaths are so burnt out that they are/may come across as the least empathic people you might encounter.

A lot of empathetic people imagine that simply being empathetic means they are 'empaths'.

A lot of people believe that ordinary, human empathy and the odd spot of emotional contagion is in fact a psychic gift.

And a lot of HSPs think they are in fact empaths.

It is all very annoying. I wish there was a better word for it than the term that has become popularised (empath) but that probably wouldn't help much anyway.

While I'm at it - a lot of people imagine that Clairsentient and Empath are interchangeable terms for the exact same thing. All. Very. Irritating. :)

Yaji
@yaji
2 years ago
69 posts

True...irritating for me too.

Karen2
@womanwhowalks
2 years ago
783 posts
Deanna was in the next generation....but I 1st heard the term Empath in the first series....way before the next generation...the 1st enterprise discovered a planet inhabited by Empaths...so...sorry...Dianna was not the first empath...she was the first to be employed by the federation...lol...

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