"I don't think compassion is an option for us. It's essential for the survival of our species" — Karen Armstrong iStockphoto hide caption

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Just A Little Nicer

Compassion is a universal virtue, but is it innate or taught? Have we lost touch with it? Can we be better at it? In this hour, TED speakers explore compassion: its roots, its meaning and its future.

Please Be Kind Django Reinhardt

"I think we need to scale back our imagination about how hard and heroic [compassion] is" — Krista Tippett courtesy of TED hide caption

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Has The Word 'Compassion' Lost Its Meaning?
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Miniature 6 Matthew Robert Cooper

"We're designed to convince ourselves that our very selective deployment of compassion is thoroughly justified" — Robert Wright courtesy of TED hide caption

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Are We Wired To Be Compassionate?
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Denmark Portland Cello Project

"I've become acutely aware of the centrality of compassion in all the major world faiths" — Karen Armstrong James Duncan Davidson/TED hide caption

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How Can We Make The World More Compassionate?
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Losing My Religion Twinkle Twinkle Little Rock Star
Little Things Swimming Under A Microscope Lullatone

"Compassionate concern activates the same system you see in every mammal when a parent cares for the young" — Daniel Goleman Robert Leslie/TED hide caption

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Why Aren't We More Compassionate?
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Be Nicer To Me Can You Imagine?