From another viewpoint
One of my favorite works of American fiction is TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD by Harper Lee. The movie based on Lee’s book, which earned Gregory Peck the academy award for best actor in 1962, is a family favorite. One of the greatest of many memorable quotes comes when Atticus Finch is teaching his daughter Scout about understanding the plight of less fortunate folks in the community. He says, “You know Scout, you never really understand another person until you see things from his point of view, until you climb into his skin and walk around in it,” Later in the story, while standing on the front porch of the home of the elusive Boo Radley, of whom Scout has always been terrified, but who later actually saves her life, she comments on how the neighborhood she thought she had memorized, now looked completely different from Boo’s front porch. Scout was able to see things she thought she understood from a totally different point of view.
In my Humility workshops (see BLESSED ARE THE MEEK by Dr. John Monaco) and in my work with coaching clients, I discuss the benefits of empathically seeing things from another’s point of view in order to truly connect and have compassion for others.
For true health we need attachment and connection to other humans. In our everyday lives, why not take Atticus Finch’s suggestion and try to see others from their point of view, yes, as Atticus suggests, “walk around in someone else’ skin” for just a moment? You will be astounded at the connection, compassion and empathy that result!
Dr. John Monaco