Enemies and Empathy

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Hugh Taft-Morales

Leader, Philadelphia Ethical Society

In our minds, human beings both create images of the enemy and feel deep empathy towards others. We dehumanize those we label as threats and share the feelings of those we embrace. How do we balance these two often-conflicting tendencies? Can we find a way to protect ourselves while de-escalating our own “fight or flight” reactions? Hugh Taft-Morales explores these opposing poles of psychological frameworks for relating to other people and their relation to Ethical Humanism.