Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 09 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

While there is increasing research on the benefits and facilitators of compassion, as with all motives, there are inhibitors. This chapter will not cover the benefits of compassion, explored in other chapters, but instead considers its inhibitors: the fears, blocks, and resistances (FBRs) to compassion and their evolutionary and psychosocial origins. We begin with an explication of a model for compassion, and show how compassion rests on discrete components and competencies that can be differentially inhibited. Next, we utilize Ernst Mayr’s (1961) classic heuristic to understand compassion inhibition; namely, the “ultimate” and “proximate” analysis. We conclude with an exploration of the antidotes to these inhibitors. Greater research into the nature of compassion inhibitors and insights on how to address them could increase the use of compassion in different domains of life.

Keywords: compassion, prosocial, facilitators, inhibitors, fears, blocks, resistances

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.