Our Focus on the One
Brian Resnick: "Is this what you call psychic numbing? The larger number of people, the more apathy."
Paul Slovic: "Yes. And the opposite side of that is something we call the singularity effect, which is an individual life is very valued. We all go to great lengths to protect a single individual or to rescue someone in distress, but then as the numbers increase, we don't respond proportionally to that."
Brian Resnick: "It means that there is no constant value for a human life, that the value of a single life diminishes against the backdrop of a larger tragedy."
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A psychologist explains the limits of human compassion
We likely all have moments of questioning if our efforts have any impact. So much suffering! What good will my efforts do? They are just a drop in the ocean!
"In the past two years we have recorded hundreds of tragic refugee stories. Hundreds among millions. Have we made a difference? Are our efforts worthwhile? Our camera has one lens, our clipboard one pen, and as we sit knee to knee and look into that one person’s eyes and focus for that moment in time on that one story there is no question that for him or her our efforts mean everything.” - Trisha Leimer
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Stepping into Each Others' Stories
When describing the work I do here at TSOS, I often say, we try to help people “step into each other’s stories.” Lately, I’ve been doing more of that myself.