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Hasan Shahpari

Dr. Hojat's works on distinction between sympathy and empathy for the mediacl profession is an example of semantic clarification with a pragmatic concern. What is missing from his meticulous work is that American medical establishment and professionals in such a field need to be engaged more in understanding sympathy rather than empathy. If we go back to the origin of these concepts it becomes clear that the Latin symathia or feeling in common, from Greek sympatheia that means going back to syn together+pathos feeling, has been a focal point of the Greek culture and transmitted to the Western culture. It is a universal attribute of humanity at large. As a legacy of phenomenological school, sympathy and its "nature" has been a subject of seminal philosophical thinkers including Max Scheler who, possibly, understood the Western culture missing a vital learning in their educational configuarion.

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