From "Other" to Brother:

Everday citizens listening, creating our new story

25 March 2017


In historic numbers, beautiful human beings -- our sisters and brothers -- are being

made wandering refugees, thrown into darkness by arrogant wars,

hunger from climate-chaos crop failures, and greed-induced poverty

. . . all preventable, if we would
feel the tears of others, of Earth.


"...we are confronted by the challenge to imagine ourselves in the place of Others,

...listen to stories because we want to find out how to live, and

...tell our own stories in the hope that someone will care.

...hear across centuries or across time zones, across cultures and across histories,

the stories that will remind us of our own humanity.

The ethical challenge is not so much one to speak, but to

listen to the weeping of which the world has always been full."

            ~ Herman Wasserman

               in "Listening past difference: Towards a compassionate ethics of communication"

"The world is indeed weeping.

Weeping is also storytelling.

But do we care enough to listen?"

            ~ Chris Spies

               Stellenbosch, South Africa


"If we don't have stories if we don't find each other, relate to each other, and understand each

other through our varied experience show will we make it through these divisive times and

work towards progress?  I tend to agree with the late Mr. Rogers: 'Frankly, there isn't anyone you

couldn't learn to love once youve heard their story.'

            ~ Lindsay Knowles

               in "Telling StoriesWhy They Are Powerful and Necessary Now More Than Ever.

               And why you should keep telling yours"


1.  An Everyday Citizen, Wife, Mother caring enough to listen then change life direction
2.  People Gathering to Un-box One Another
3.  Creating Our New Story

= = 1 = =
An Everyday Citizen, Wife, Mother
caring enough to listen then
change life direction
Janessa Gans Wilder is a CIA officer turned peace builder, who discovered in the war zones of Iraq that eliminating the enemy was "a fruitless, hopeless effort" that did not solve -- but increased -- the problem of growing insurgency and terrorism.


"For every terrorist or insurgent we killed, it seemed that there were 100 more ready to take their places.

"It felt like catching drops of water from a leaky faucet," Wilder says.

Janessa details her career change and choosing life over death by establishing The Euphrates Institute -- -- to help diverse global citizens meet and humanize one another.
She illustrates her transformation from seeing the people of the Middle East as the Other to brothers and sisters.

  Janessa embodying how each one of us can become a peace builder and change agent when we open our heart and mind to create human connections.


Turn the 'Other' into a Brother

Janessa Gans Wilder

TEDxRedding -- 15 Oct 2015 --19-min video

= = 2 = =
People Gathering to
Un-box One Another

Un-boxing One Another
in a big room


What Happens When We Un-box Each Other

3-1/2 min video -- TV 2 Denmark -- 03 Feb 2017


Un-boxing One Another
at a mosqu

In March, 2017, HANDS AROUND THE MOSQUE inspired 700 diverse women, men, and youth -- mostly strangers to one another -- to gather in Santa Clara, California, USA as community, as one.

Event Flyer --

Mercury News --

National Peace Academy --

Participant Video --

FOX-2 TV News --

KRON-TV News --

NBC-TV News --


Un-boxing One Another
in a community cent

In post-election January, 2017, CROSSING LINES IS SAN MATEO: Sharing stories, Creating Community attracted 115 diverse citizens -- mostly strangers to one another -- to circle up at Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Center for hearing one another's stories and begin creating a new culture of connection in their neighborhoods.
VIEW, HEAR, and

= = 3 = =
Creating Our New Story
A NEW STORY FOR A NEW PEOPLE examines the importance of stories, each person, and how we think about ourselves and each other to help bring about a more sustainable world together.


It's Time for A New Story of the People

7-1/2 min video

NEW MUSIC FOR OUR NEW STORY comes from The YMCA Jerusalem Youth Chorus  -- -- a choral and dialogue program for Israeli and Palestinian youth in Jerusalem.
Through the co-creation of music and the sharing of stories, the youth empower one another to become citizen-leaders in their communities and inspire singers and listeners around the world to create relationships and community.

They sing: "If you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make a change."
They conclude: ""Stay with me, 'cuz you're all I need."


A Mashup for Change

Jerusalem Youth Chorus

5-min music video

THE GOLDEN RULE  Spiritual Playdate Wheel explores the prescription common to many religions around Earth to treat others a you wish to be treated.
Students and youth groups can spin this interactive wheel to discover the many cultural and spiritual expressions of The Golden Rule found on all continents.
Adult participation is allowed in this joy of discovering how we are one in this principle.


Exploring The Golden Rule

A spiritual playdate wheel

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