Other-ness is the perspective that enables hatred, fear, and war. When we redefine the Others as fellow humans, with similar needs, and feel ourselves breathe in the same air they breathe out, then we can start to build peace together--BUILD being the operative word. If we see only walls between us, walls erected by different values, then we will overlook that the walls rest upon the same ground composed of our shared basic needs. We may need to dig into that common ground and forget about struggling to climb or topple the walls.
I am pondering these concepts after reading news reports from around the world, and meeting people whose only friends and neighbors are people like themselves. Have you shared a meal, a word, a smile, even air, with a person outside the communal walls that surround your family? And I don't mean sharing by accident, but with intention. Do you see the walls you may have unwittingly erected by hanging out mainly with people whose values reflect your own? We all retreat behind our walls at times, no matter how much we attempt to connect with people from outside those values-based-walls. But those who cannot see beyond the walls, who fear getting their hands dirty by digging into the common ground of basic needs, will never become peacemakers, only politicians and patrons of Others.