Learning the lessons of life takes time and there are a lot of errors that must be endured before learning patience and understanding. Compassion is required to understand, and to often gaining compassion requires being put in the place of the one that you are gaining compassion for. There are those that are not sympathetic to anyone or anything unless it has a direct impact on their lives.
It is a lesson in getting what you give that is not subtle. Negative actions attract negative actions the same way that positive actions attract positive actions. It is not enough to know what is going on around you. Simply stating the facts that you have heard does nothing to improve the situations of those around you. It can be inconvenient to take time out of your day to show compassion but it really does not cost you anything at all.
Understanding is something that you learn in time. When you have children, especially a handicapped child you begin to see just how little you have understood through the years. The beliefs that you have always had can change once you have a child with special needs. A simple trip to the local store can turn into an adventure that you never imagined as sights and sounds appear to you as if for the first time.
It is not merely a matter of hearing or seeing something but knowing what it is and how it feels from all angels. The idea of not knowing what is going on around you can be a scary one, imagine being a small child and having no idea what the sites and sounds around you are. Next time you see someone that appears to be lost, scared or confused hopefully you will show them some understanding and try to aid them so they can be more comfortable.