I once read in a Buddhist text, that in order to develop existential compassion, start with your Mother.
The reason is this is often the easiest person to feel compassion for. She went through many months of struggle and strain to bring you into this world. Many sleepless nights guarding over you while you needed her help more than ever. Contemplating on the gratefulness you feel for your Mother is a way to connect with your empathy.
This particular Buddhist philosophy believed in reincarnation, reasoning that at some point in time, we are all someone else’s Mother. Perhaps a bit of a stretch for some, but not disproven, and an interconnected perspective, so roll with it!
This should encourage us to extend the same compassion we have for our Mother, to our friends, co-workers, acquaintances, users, and for the truly compassionate: enemies. In this regard, we can be thankful for our enemies and antagonists, for only they can provide us the opportunity to practice some of life’s greatest lessons in patience, forgiveness, and compassion.