What Is It Like To Be You?

How might this single question lead us to ending all war?

We use empathy not to feel sorry for or pity those that commit harm against us. We use it to understand the conditions that give rise to violence, so that we may have a chance to prevent it in the future.

Could this simple question lead us towards a path of peace?

What is it like to be you?

What is it like to be Donald Trump?

What is it like to be an oil executive?

What is it like to be a racist?

What is it like to be the person that you villify and demonize and dehumanize?

Because that is the common denominator.

When I read right wing websites and left wing websites, the comments sections, they disagree about issues, but they agree on one thing, which is that the people on the other side, there is something wrong with them (inverse)

They are not as intelligent as we are. They are not as open-minded as we are. They don’t pay attention to facts. They have some moral or intellectual defficiency that explains why they disagree with us, the good people, the smart people, the moral people.

Both sides agree on that.

Therefore both sides also agree on certain tactics that come from that.

These are the tactics of domination, the tactics of war.

The general formula being “Find an enemy and defeat that enemy.”

For example, we don’t know how to solve the problem of crime, which is an outgrowth of deep social conditions that go all the way down to our basic financial system, the way money is created in our society. That’s not something we know how to solve. But if your blame [crime] on criminals, then you know how to solve it. It’s easy. You use the tactics of force, of domination. You lock them up. 

If the problem is terrorism, we don’t know how to solve the deep conditions that give birth to terrorism, which implicates our entire world economy and political system so let’s instead blame [terrorism] on these scary, horrible terrorists who are just bad. That’s why they do. They are bad. The solution then is easy. Kill the terrorists.

Bombing the terrorists does not solve the problem. It worsens the problem. It adds to the conditions that are part of the problem.

It is almost as if we don’t know how to be in the absence of an enemy, in the absence of something to blame.

So we take every problem and turn it into a war by trying to find an enemy.

When we stop blaming the most proximate culprit, we enter into a deeper radicalism that says “I don’t know what the real answer is but I am going to look” and we become open to understanding the deep conditions that are manifesting as the symptoms that we call terrorism, crime, racism, mysongony, ignorance, greed.

When we become aware of the complexity and the depth of the true causes of the symptoms, we realize that our normal war making habits do not work.

When I understand that you are acting in a racist way not because you are just some bad person. But maybe it is because you feel betrayed by the system and you want to blame somebody and you are being offered the person to blame or this group of people to blame and I understand now where it is coming from and I understand the culture you grew up in and what hurts in you so maybe I can meet these conditions somehow.

That’s the alternative to a world with endless war.

We’ve been fighting an endless war for thousands of years and evil has not yet been defeated. Does that mean we have to fight harder?

Or could it be that the mentality of war making creates endless enemies and perpetuates itself?

Not that there is never a time to fight but we are trapped in a habit of fighting.

The question “What is it like to be you?” is a way to heal the separation.

It is not something you do to be a good person. It is something you do because it brings you to the truth and it brings you to your creative power as an agent of change in this world.

We bring your story to life

Find out how video storytelling can help your audience resonate with your sustainable idea, research, campaign or product.

Related stories

How can we transform our role from Earth’s conquerors to its healers, reigniting the ancient wisdom that regenerate the Earth?
If there was one path to happiness, only one, and reuniting with my family hinged upon it, could I learn to forgive, respect, and even mourn the loss of my worst ‘enemy’?
What is at the root of the mass shootings and culture of gun violence that plagues the United States?

Get our latest video releases
in your mailbox bi-weekly

We never send solicitations or junk mail and we never give your address to anyone else.

The following is a step by step guide to translating our videos.

How to translate sustainable human videos

Here is some instruction so you can easily translate the videos.

Required Tools:

- A Computer.
- Internet Connection.
- A basic text editor program like Notepad or Wordpad.

What Is a .SRT File?

A .SRT file extension is a SubRip Subtitle file. These types of files hold video subtitle information like the start and end timecodes of the text and the sequential number of subtitles.

Steps To Translate A Video

Step 1 : Locate the appropriate .SRT file.
In the embedded spreadsheet below, find the title of the video you wish to translate. Check to be sure that your language has not been translated yet.


Step 2: Download the SRT file.
Double-click on the .SRT file for the video you wish to translate. Click on the Download button.
Step 3: Translate the file.
Open the file using any basic text editor program such as Notepad or Wordpad or equivalent. Do not open in Microsoft Word as it will corrupt the formatting. After opening the file, you want to REPLACE the English text with your language, line by line, keeping all numerical and time formatting. When you finish, rename the file with the name of the language you translated.
Step 4: Upload your new .SRT file using form below.
When you submit your translation file and provide your email, we will inform you once we have uploaded it to the video. Please allow for 24-48 hours for us to do this as it is a manual process.

How has this video story impacted you?