I came across this fascinating animated video which explains in a creative, but clear way the need for more empathy in our lives, in our societies.
The artist defines the 20th century as the age of introspection, where therapists and self help guru’s taught us to look inside ourselves to get to know ourselves. But we’ve discovered that didn’t work so well. That’s why it’s time for outrospection, for looking to find who we are in connecting to the world around us.
Looking outside of our own lives and connecting more with others must lead to more empathy. And that empathy can lead to a revolution in human relationships, but also to a broader revolution. As a history major, I was intrigued by the links in the video between empathy and the first human rights movement in Great Britain, centered around the issue of slavery. I simply never thought of it on those terms.
I’m convinced that a life of empathy is a life where we radiate God’s love to those around us. Never is Christ more visible in us, as when we reach out to others in true empathy. How much could our students (and we ourselves!) change in the world if they were filled with God-inspired empathy for others?
But the question is: how do we teach empathy to our students? The video talks about a ‘Empathy Museum’ which is certainly a cool idea, but I think we can all agree that won’t do the job. So what will? How can we teach our students to become more empathic, to develop true empathy for those around them?
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this!
(Please note that the video is not Christian in origin and contains some ‘revolutionary’ and humanistic ideas!)