Difference Between Passion and Compassion

Main Difference – Passion vs Compassion

Passion and compassion are two feelings that any individual can feel. Passion refers to a strong feeling of enthusiasm and/or excitement or a strong feeling sexual or romantic feeling. Compassion refers to sympathetic awareness of others’ distress coupled with a desire to alleviate it. The main difference between passion and compassion is that passion is an internal feeling that prompts us to fulfill our own desires and wishes whereas compassion is a feeling we feel towards others. In other words, passion prompts us to make ourselves happy whereas compassion prompts us to make others happy.

This article explains,

1. What is Passion? – Definition, Meaning and Usage with Examples

2. What is Compassion? – Definition, Meaning and Usage with Examples

3. Key Differences Between Passion and Compassion Difference Between Passion and Compassion - Passion vs Compassion Comparison Summary

What is Passion

The term passion can have several meanings. Passion can refer to a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something as well as to a strong sexual or romantic feeling for someone. Look at the following examples to understand the meanings and usage of this word more clearly.

Dancing is her passion.

He was the only student with a passion for learning.

She spoke with passion.

Her brother developed a passion for gardening.

In the above example, passion refers to a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement. The following sentences contain the second meaning of passion; intense romantic or sexual feelings.

Their all-consuming passion for each other led to the destruction of two families.

Olivia nurses a passion for Dan.

Passion is an internal feeling, i.e., it is self-centered. Passion refers to the desires, wishes, and wants of an individual. These desires are usually what the individual wants for himself, what he likes, etc.

Main Difference - Passion vs Compassion

What is Compassion

Compassion is sympathetic pity and concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others. It’s a feeling of wanting to help someone who is sick, hungry, in trouble, etc. In other words, this is when your heart moves for another’s situation. Poverty, violence, disability, unhappiness, disease, death, etc. are some situations that evoke compassion in people. When you see a person in such a situation, you might want to help that person to get away from that plight.

The following examples will help you understand the meaning and usage of this noun better.

The victims of war deserve our compassion and understanding.

I felt compassion for the poor woman, but there was nothing I could do.

The nurses showed neither compassion nor pity for the poor patients.

The queen showed compassion for the poor child.

Difference Between Passion and Compassion

Difference Between Passion and Compassion


Passion refers to a strong feeling of enthusiasm and/or excitement or a strong sexual or romantic feeling.

Compassion refers to sympathetic awareness of others’ distress coupled with a desire to alleviate it.

Oneself vs Others

Passion is about fulfilling an individual’s own desires and wishes. 

Compassion prompts people to help others.

Image Courtesy: 

“G. Conti La parabola del Buon Samaritano Messina Chiesa della Medaglia Miracolosa Casa di Ospitalità Collereale” By G. Conti – Accascina (Public Domain) via  

“Huguenot lovers on St. Bartholomew’s Day” By John Everett Millais – Wikipedia in english (Public Domain) via

About the Author: Hasa

Hasa has a BA degree in English, French and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food.

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