There’s a popular saying:
“Hurt people hurt people.”
Lots of people experience the hurt of neglect, abuse, humiliation, deprivation, violence and even intentional cruelty. And resolve deep in their soul never, ever to inflict that wound on another human. They do everything in their power not to hurt others because they know exactly what it feels like to have your dignity and humanity stripped away.
There is a “transubstantiation” aspect to profound suffering – it can become deep compassion.
Choice. We’re that species. Conscious choice defines us.