by Ashley Logsdon

The Compassionate Heart Philosophy (Episodes 112 and 342)

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The "Compassionate Heart Philosophy" has become a way of life for us over the past few years, so it was time to go back to this podcast episode and do another update! So what do we mean by the compassionate heart philosophy?

Love without ownership. It is a willingness to love another being without a say in the outcome.

Love without ownership.

*Episode 112, Family Update, aired September 18th, 2019

Listen to these episodes on iTunes, Pandora, Audible, SpotifyStitcherGoogle PlayTuneInYouTubeiHeartRadio,, Gaana or your RSS Feed 

Lessons In Letting Go

Back in 2019 when we originally came up with this concept, we were traveling in our RV through San Diego, California, visiting with my brother and his family. 

As we set up camp, an unexpected visitor crossed our path at the campground - a wild kitten. Our daughter, Clara, with her innate connection to animals, managed to coax the timid kitty into confidence and curiosity...we now had a little friend hanging out with us all the time. 

We faced a crossroads - while we loved "George" the kitten, we knew it just didn't work for us to get a cat right then (more on George below).

There are so many great paths we can take. And, the reality is, each one requires something different. For us at this time, bringing a cat into the mix was just too much to add to our adventures. 

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We had the privilege of RVing all across the country for over seven years. And, in that, we had to deliberately set aside some of the other dreams we have, like a hobby farm full of wonderful animals.

Our desire for travel means minimal things. Having a houseful of animals and plants requires more commitment and space than the pick-up-and-go lifestyle we were living. The time commitment and space needed for plants and animals conflicted with the nomadic life we lived. 

What are we doing that allows for the most Life Harmony?

Letting Go To Love More

Sometimes, while we have great intentions, our desire to protect and rescue may inadvertently limit the growth and experience of others. When we want to intervene and guide - even if it's prompted by love and compassion - it may not be what's needed on another's journey. 

It's a profound revelation - sometimes, the most powerful act of love is simply letting go and relinquishing ownership.

This comes in the form of not taking in every animal, but recognizing other homes can provide. It also shows up when we spend an afternoon with a friend navigating a rocky home life, recognizing that just giving them a reprieve from the heavy may be your best support - not trying to "fix" their world. 

Sometimes it shows up by recognizing the end of a friendship or releasing expectations of a relationship.

Maybe it's accepting diverse views from our loved ones that allow us to embrace the ebb and flow - and differences. - in life...without the need to claim or control it. 

Embracing the Abundance Mentality

The Compassionate Heart Philosophy, or love without ownership or agenda, seamlessly intertwines with the abundance mentality. 

On that note, think about reaping and sowing. When a farmer sows seeds, she doesn't just plant exactly what she expects to yield. You know you plant way more - some won't survive, some will get damaged by the weather, some will get eaten by animals and insects, and some may sustain others. The act of sowing is an abundance practice - sowing enough to make an impact beyond yourself so you can continue to harvest. 

The act of reaping the harvest, again, isn't to take it all. I recently read the book, Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer, and here she lays it out beautifully:

"The essence of the harvest given is in the word itself: 'To take' and 'to give' are contained in a single word.

It is an umbilical understanding of the earth, that as we receive from her generous body, we are compelled to give in return. The field makes a gift of berries to the hungry creature. Its gift is the fruit, borne with labor over the season.

Our gift in return is to take what we need and leave the rest, a gift to other beings. By taking no more than half, we ensure the continuance of the gift. What I've noticed is that, in gathering from plant communities, it is not enough just to take. You have to give something in return."

Braiding Sweetgrass, Robin Wall Kimmerer

Sow plentiful seeds of love and empathy. Don't look to impose your conditions or expectations on their fruition.

You don't know beyond your own perspective - who else is impacted by what you take...and by what you give?

Compassion In The Family

Within our family, the compassionate heart philosophy may show up in recognizing that our wisdom may not always be the answer our child needs/wants at the time. Giving our children autonomy in how they learn and who they can learn from opens the door for more influence...and I'm not out to shelter my child, but to show them the world so they can navigate it with the tools we've explored together. 

There are others who are going to speak into my children's lives. Both good and bad, they will have an impact, and our kids will have the opportunity to harvest the fruit of what they glean from others, and determine what they will give in response. 

As we raise autonomous and light-seeking humans in our home, we have to recognize we are stewards of these beings, not owners - and the older they get, the more they show us this as they stand in their own independence

My compassionate heart philosophy is what allows me to let them stumble and not just rush in to make everything right. As a mama and a high-D personality style, that is extremely difficult at times when I'm convinced I know the right/best way. 

Feeling Stuck?

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Personality stylesmarriage/intimacy, parenting, education, simplifying your life or travel - what is pressing on your mind? I'm here for you. From free resources to full-on 1-1 coaching for your unique situation, you aren't alone. 

You invest in toys, date nights, or Disney. When was the last time you invested in something to get intentional with your family connection?

Going back to our Why

At this turning point in 2019, we were selling our first RV and moving into a new one. And of course, the slippery slope of what was really wanted started.

We had to really address our “why” again, and what we wanted to get out of our travels. We want to explore, connect, listen, respect, learn and loveThis has been our family vision for so long.

So, lost in the desert between opinion and desire, we learned how to love and let go, and embrace the wanters sometimes for a moment versus needing to own them. 

When we started to dig into our “why”, more opportunities presented themselves. Opportunities to explore different lifestyles and really explore at what we wanted. We looked beyond the either/or opportunities and looked at more “and” solutions.

All these little animals and plants started to come into our lives a lot as we started to talk about it and think about it. When we look at life with a growth mindset, this fits our functional education model of learning even more about what works for us.

In 2019, amidst feeling like we'd outgrown our camper and struggling with the summer heat, we learned a lot about letting go of the agenda and expectations to just allow life to flow

We had to look past the pulled heartstrings and the desperation of being hot and cramped and irritable and recognize that we had to put things into perspective and look at practicality and rationality, not just what we wanted at the moment.

Here Clara is with sweet George, who is still thriving in his forever home with a little girl and her daddy, who had just lost their older cat. It aligned perfectly, and was the first step down our path of fostering kittens (we fostered 18 kittens over the span of the summer last year, and this year we've fostered nine so far)!

There are so many animals – and humans – we can pour into without having to “claim ownership” of them.

The Compassionate Heart Philosophy

You can make an impact that isn’t an ongoing impression. Some people – and animals – will come into our lives, and then move on. It’s okay to love and let go.

Work through the feelings of new and desire – a new journey, a new RV, a new animal…our first instincts are to gather, hold, keep, and go. In our family, we dealt with desires that wanted us to go deeper down into commitment that wasn’t always reflecting what our life plan was.

We’re looking through one lens, and it may not be the perspective we all see. When you co-create, it takes time. It takes letting the good and the hard emotions, letting them flow, and getting more and more clear on how we can move forward together. And sometimes that means simply choosing a path, knowing other paths out there are just as desirable.

Simply Love

When we shifted our focus to the best option for George the kitten, for example, we were able to all pour on the love for this little kitten while we were with him, recognizing that it was a short-term commitment.

Love for the moment, even if you aren’t going to be in it for the long haul.

Love even when the purpose is different than your desire or expectation.

Love even when you need to let go.

Your Weekly Challenge:

Look at where you have an opportunity to have a compassionate heart. Even if it’s not taking it all in, or taking ownership/responsibility. Maybe it’s just for a moment. Open your home to another kiddo to show some love for a short bit and let them experience family in your home. You don't have to rescue and save every person for them to experience a glimpse of what life could look like for them, or to experience what love and compassion feel like. 

Here is your challenge for this week - 

Dive deep into this concept of compassionate love without ownership. Whether it's a relationship, a cherished possession, or an expectation, allow yourself to release the reins of control, trusting that the universe will unfold as it should.

Embrace the abundance mentality by sowing seeds of love and empathy, unburdened by the need to dictate their trajectory. Let's navigate the intricacies of love, loss, and growth with open hearts, free from the bonds of ownership.

Love on some animals just for a period without keeping them forever – foster, or work at a shelter or farm. Look for opportunities this week to love and let go as a family.

We love change, and we’re excited to embark on this next season of stationary life again after 8 years on the road. Opening our door to fosters and cultivating a safe hangout haven in our home are ways we are now pursuing the “compassionate heart philosophy.”

The uniqueness in each of us strengthens all of us. Namaste.

Nathan and Ashley Logsdon

Questions or comments?

Personality styles, marriage/intimacy, parenting, education, minimalism or travel - what is pressing on your mind?

Or, hop on over to the Mama Says Namaste or Unschooling Families FB groups and ask your question there!

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About the author, Ashley Logsdon


Ashley Logsdon is a Family and Personality Styles Coach and Lifelong Learner. She and her husband Nathan are RVing the States and unschooling their 3 girls. Her mission is to shift the mindsets of families from reaction to intention, and guide them in creating the family they love coming home to. Looking deeper than the surface, we assess the strengths, triggers, and simplifying your lifestyle so you truly recognize how the uniqueness in each of us strengthens all of us.

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