WORLD AFFAIRS | PROSPERITY | PEACE

More thoughts on how to live together in peace

(with a touch of karanīyamettā sutta)

Francis Laleman
8 min readOct 26, 2023

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The Seven Seals, artwork by Tsang Kin Wah (2009) — image by flaleman, Insel Hombroich, November 2018

When I wrote a piece about us being ready for some peace now, please — I don’t think that I was ready for what happened next.

Okay I think we need some peace now

My story eked out a shadowy existence for a day or two, and just when I thought it wasn’t going to catch on at all and I was preparing for the usual sigh, it suddenly took off with a boost, like a rocket, and in no time broke all my Medium story records — in terms of page views, reads, and comments, both public and private, and both here on Medium and outside.

Tsang Kin Wah: The Seven Seals — photo by flaleman, Insel Hombroich 2018

My piece on peace was in fact mainly about othering. The mechanism of othering refers to the fact that some of us no longer see the other as one of us, or worse, no longer see the other as an equal human being — which, in a very definite way, deprives the offender of a sense of morality and gives them a license to insult, hurt, and kill.

Tsang Kin Wah: The Seven Seals — photo by flaleman, Insel Hombroich 2018

With the present post, I would like to thank the many readers who have seen, read, highlighted, commented, and engaged with the story, and especially those of you who have chosen to hit the Follow and/or Subscribe button next to my name. I also want to thank you for your feedback — by addressing some of the points that some of you have raised.

Two human beings having a conversation — image by flaleman, 2018

The subtle strategy of othering

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Francis Laleman

a husband, father, painter, writer, educationist, designer, facilitator. author of “Resourceful Exformation” (a book on facilitation) available from Amazon.