Empathy Is the Most Important Thing – A Conversation With Lin-Manuel Miranda

The most important thing you can give your children is empathy. It is the most important tool in your tool box as an actor…”

Lin-Manuel Miranda, actor, writer, and creator of the musicals Hamilton and In the Heights, talks to Oprah about how empathy is the most important thing you can give your kids. In this day and age, so many kids are growing up more privileged than ever before and we should always remember to have empathy and understanding in our hearts for all people. 

With empathy, we have the ability to put ourselves in other people’s shoes and imagine what life is like in their place. It lets us explore what it would be like to be those other people or live in those scenarios they are going through. 

As a world traveler, I have met so many people with different mindsets and opinions, experiences and lifestyles. I have learned how to be empathetic and understanding towards their ideas and points of view even if they are completely different from mine. Empathy helps us to relate to people from other places and builds bridges of understanding where once there were walls of hatred or judgement. 

I believe that empathy/understanding is one of the best ways that we can bring this world into a more peaceful era. Just imagine what it would be like if presidents, political parties, parents, teachers, writers, etc., learned to be more empathetic of people they don’t agree with. Imagine if we could all relate to one another’s story more and try to put ourselves in their shoes before placing judgement or worse, starting conflicts or wars.

Empathy could be the path to a better connected and more loving world. And it all starts with every single one of us. We can all do our part in having more empathy towards our family and friends, our community, and people in our society that are different from us. We can take the time to get to know people of different backgrounds or cultures and really get to know what life is like in their shoes. Immediately we could make so many more friends and build those bridges of love and friendship that weren’t there before! 


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