Differences can make for painful incompatibilities. But differences can also make for healthy compatibilities that lead to all kinds of positive things. When we are suffering as a result of the differences between ourselves and other people, it is tempting to think that if everyone was just like us, there would be no problems in the world. For this reason, it is good to do awareness exercises so that you can clearly see your positives and negatives, strengths and weakness, what you possess and what you lack and also the danger of there being no counter energies to your own character traits, perspectives and values. One of the best exercises for this is a little game I like to play with people called the “My Planet” game. What’s great about this game is that even though it will challenge your ego, it is also really fun to do.
To play this game, imagine that you had your own planet or place or environment where all there is, is people who are exactly like you. People with the same values, same priorities, same interests, same likes and dislikes, same perspectives and opinions, same personality, same strengths, same weaknesses etc. Some people I’ve played with like to imagine that there was a mass migration process that took place on earth whereby everyone migrated to an area that was inhabited by only the people who were exactly like them. And you explore the reality of what this planet or place or environment would be like.
To play this game correctly, you have to be really, really honest about yourself. It is tempting to answer what you would want your planet to be like. This exercise is not about what you would want the planet of only people like you to be like. This exercise is about the reality of what it would be like given the reality of who you are and what you are really like. For this reason, it’s a good idea to have other people play this game with you. So that they can chime in about what they think your planet would be like. Just make sure that you play with people who know you and who will actually be honest about both the wonders and dangers of you as a person. This is not a validation exercise. This is an awareness exercise.
When you play this game, be sure to consider things like:
- What kinds of terrain or landscape is your planet comprised of?
- What is the weather like?
- What kind of dwellings do your people live in? What building materials are they made of?
- What kind of buildings are there, if any and how are they organized or placed?
- If the people who are like you were their own race or species, what would the people look like? How tall or short are they? How human-like are they? What are their eyes like? What color is their skin? Describe your people.
- What is the personality/character of the people on your planet like? And how does that effect the way people interact and live on your planet?
- What do people wear on your planet, if anything?
- What kind of sounds/music are on your planet, if any.
- What kinds of smells are on your planet?
- What is the dynamic between men and women on your planet? Are there any differences between them? Do they have a different place/role in society?
- What is the process of reproduction like on your planet?
- How are children raised on your planet?
- Do people live alone or together?
- Do the people form monogamous bonds or marriages? If not, what type of relationships do you see between people?
- What is sex like on your planet?
- How do people spend their time on your planet?
- What are the top five values of the people on your planet in order of priority and how does that effect the way that people spend their time and also the way that society itself is organized?
- What fulfills and motivates the people on your planet?
- What type of government or rule system exists on your planet?
- How is conflict between individuals handled on your planet?
- What kind of animal life inhabits the planet and what does the relationship between the people and the animals look like? Are there pets?
- What kind of plant life inhabits the planet and what does the relationship between the people and the plant life look like?
- What is the mineral life like on your planet? And what is the relationship between the people and minerals like?
- What do people eat? How do they get it? How is it grown or made? What is their relationship to the food they eat?
- What type of work, hobbies and/or sports do the people on your planet have?
- Are there any social gatherings? If so, what do they look like and when do they happen and what purpose do they serve?
- What types of transportation are used on your planet?
- How do people on your planet communicate? What languages do they speak, if any?
- What’s the hierarchical structure of the society? Is there one?
- Is there any spiritual or religious element to your planet, if so, what does it look like?
- What is the system of economy or trade on your planet? How do people go about getting what they need?
- Are there any holidays or specific traditions on your planet?
- What is the main fuel source on your planet?
- What is the biggest source of stress on your planet?
- How long do the people on your planet live? How do they die?
- What is the greatest threat to your planet?
- What about the culture/society on your planet is the best?
- What about your culture/society is the worst?
- What about your culture/society could bring about its own downfall?
- What things of value could you offer to other planets or other cultures?
- Do people stay on your planet or in their own area, or do they explore other planets and cultures and places?
- How progressive is your planet? Or does it stay the same across generations?
- What is the technology on your planet like, if any? And what is the relationship between the people and the technology like?
- How does your planet get along with or interact with other planets and the cultures and resources to be found there? What is the attitude towards outsiders? Or does your planet and people keep to itself?
And relative to each one of these questions, make sure to explore WHY.
You don’t have to limit yourself to these questions only, in fact any question that you could possibly come up with in addition to this list that I have come up with for you, will simply enhance and deepen your own self-awareness.
So that you can understand how this game goes, I’m going to give you two different examples done by two different people:
The first example is: Corinna
If there was a culture of people only like me, Corinna, it would be a planet full of warriors. The nature would be Amazonian like, lush and beautiful. However the climate would be rather cold. We live in open, small houses that are functional and natural elements are incorporated with the houses. It is common that a house is built around a tree, so the tree is both inside and outside the home. There are separate dwellings close to one another. The only other buildings we have besides homes are venues for gathering and venues for sport. The culture would be quite similar to the Amazons that Wonder Woman comes from. It is all about capability. In order of importance, our values are: Capability, strength, mastery, camaraderie and sport. There would be every kind of war sport imaginable played on the planet. It would be a matriarchal society. We speak only one language and all of us communicate a lot and the conflicts we can’t solve by talking talk, we solve by physically fighting. It smells like mud, dirt and blood on my planet. There is no music unless it is intentional for war or sport. There are nature sounds all around us. Especially primal animal noises.
We spend all of our time mastering skills and getting better at our specific role within society. There is no art without a purpose on our planet. Such as design for armor so as to enhance the effectiveness of the armor.
There is a clear and strict but fair hierarchy based off of women proving themselves in order to hold the power. There are meetings to decide things, but the person with the highest rank still gets the final say. Every individual can bring their desires to the table and speak for them. You can make a case for yourself. But those higher up in status can make the decision. All the humans on the planet would be very tall. rather like Vikings.
Men have a lower status than women. They would exist to do the women’s bidding and to pleasure them, but they would be happy that their life purpose is to serve the women. Sex would be primal and the women would both initiate and dominate the men sexually. There are certain roles in the culture. So, based on your natural talents and desires and societal agreement, a certain woman may be granted the right to bear a child. And if this is the case, a certain male is selected and intentional breeding takes place. The mother is responsible for the child. But the child belongs to the society and the child’s development is guided by everyone in the society.
The women would wear armor made out of steel and metal. The men would wear simple linen. We would thrive on proving ourselves in order to belong and to not be thrown out of society. There would be rites of passage. Meaning that you have to pass tests in order to become an adult or to take a specific position.
Our bodies could take bullets without being killed by them. We would be preoccupied with our survival. It wouldn’t be a spiritual, esoteric, or superstitious culture. We are all physically oriented. There would be no holidays or off/leisure time. Our fulfilment would come only from work and purpose, which we would dedicate every second of every day to. We are all dedicated to becoming better and better and better and to competing with one another to see how good we are.
Riding animals is how we get around. That and walking. But only big, predatory ones and mystical ones, like dragons and lions with wings. And we must tame and ride them, or die. And if I’m honest, even though I am vegan, going just off of my personality, it would be a culture that would both hunt and gather. And we would eat and use literally all parts of anything that we hunt or gather.
The main fuel source on our planet is man power. We didn’t harness anything like the sun or the coal or anything else. It’s a primitive culture in many ways, but we are all very intelligent, otherwise we don’t survive. Our technology is simple and very physical, like a way more powerful version of the technology that existed in the 15oos.
We would live in harmony with any one of us that deserved respect because they earned it. We would be a culture that is likely to start a war with other planets for fun and we would also win that war. It’s possible that people reach the age of 100. But only the very best and only if they succeed their childhood rites of passage and only if they pass every test. If someone gets sick or injured, but they have the will to live, we do caretake them with holistic medicine. We could offer other cultures structure, skills, superior products, fighting skills, and military back up for wars. Outsiders have to prove themselves to gain our trust. We are open to them, but guarded. We only travel to other cultures if we need them to accomplish an aim of ours. Or if we want to start a war for fun.
The main problem with my planet is that it is harsh, we are constantly competing and fighting and we have to prove ourselves every single day, so there is no real security or relaxation in our society. The best thing about my planet is that everything is very clear and straightforward and honorable. We have a great sense of purpose.
The second example is: Tristen
If there were a culture of people only like me, Tristen, we would live up in the clouds, isolated from all other cultures. Individuals from other cultures sometimes are granted access to our society for the purpose of sanctuary, healing and rejuvenation. It is cold, but we keep the interior of our cities the perfect temperature and humidity for physical health. The weather doesn’t really change. Within this land of clouds there is a single strand underneath that connects to the earth. We would only go down to the ground, if there was something there that we absolutely needed. And only a few of us that are adventurers would be brave enough to do that for the rest of us. We make our buildings out of a transcalent substance not found on earth.
We are small people, fragile and thin boned. Fairy like. Pale skin. Slanted eyes that can come in all different colors. All different colors of hair. We wear flowing silks made of only organic materials. The sound of harp music is playing softly in the background from sun up until the sun goes down. The cities are full of the calming smell of flowers, like lavender, rose and orange Jasmin.
We live in apartments within a palace, “sky city”. They are delicate and beautiful. Almost everything is pastel and very aesthetic from the decor to the food. Every building has silk curtains that flow in the wind and pillars. Crystals are everywhere and we talk to them; we live in symbioses with them. We care a great deal about wellbeing and nurturing the body, emotions, mind and spirit. We have the best and most elaborate spas in the universe.
Everyone eats raw vegan. We grow our food in hanging gardens. We turn whatever dish we are eating into a beautiful, intricate work of art. There are edible gardens everywhere. Birds and cats are the main animal inhabitants of our sky cities. There are also many predatory animals in our world that our people hide from, which is one reason that we went up into the clouds.
Wings and walking are our form of transportation. We invented wings that we can strap onto ourselves if we want to go anywhere. But we stay inside most of the time and admire the view.
There is no system of governing. All of us are like a school of fish in that there is no disagreement, there is a connection to what is best for all. There is no self-generated thought. And our free will does not oppose the cosmos. It is spiritually deterministic. There is almost no conflict. And if there is, each of us talks ourselves out of it, so that there is alignment.
Men and women live separately and are equal. They live separate lives except for specific times in the week, where they come together. Sex can only take place on certain days of the year, in alignment with the cycles of the universe. Regarding conception, the men and the women pair off in rooms of a specific part of the palace at a specific time when the astrology is in a certain arrangement so as to allow for a spirit to come through us into the physical. The man chooses the woman that he knows he is a match to (there is no such thing as two men wanting the same woman) and leads her into the chamber with the intention of making love to her, and being open to the universe creating conception.
If a pregnancy does occur, a flying squid-like being lands on the stomach of the woman and tells the society what that child will be like and what it’s purpose will be. The child is born in a dark, intimate setting with only the woman and man present. Unless there is trouble, in which case, a midwife enters the room. Since the personality and purpose of the child is known, their entire upbringing is already decided upon before birth and is the responsibility of both parents to carry out. The way that people learn on the planet is through a system of mentorship.
Every second of our lives is lived with spirituality in mind. It is a culture where the nonphysical and physical come together. We are the studiers of the cosmos. Almost everyone is an artist. Our fuel source is a magic cosmic energy.
Our top values are: Spirituality, beauty, health, serenity and duty. We all tend to be reserved and serious. There is a sadness to each of us, but none of us know exactly why it is there. Even though duty is important to us, it is important that no one is forcing themselves to do anything. And so, we take time to nourish and nurture ourselves if we need to.
My planet is always at risk of attack because it is defenseless and is the most unrelatable to others. This potential for attack is our greatest source of stress. We can offer other cultures an awareness about the universe and cosmos, revolutionary health treatments, artisan goods, rejuvenation, rehabilitation and our famous spas.
The main problem with my planet is that we are frail, ungrounded, isolated and closed off, passive, not very progressive and everything is predetermined. The best part about my planet is: We are in-tune with everything around us, we are deliberate, everything is beautiful, everyone is healthy and there is almost no conflict.
Reflect upon the outcome of this game once you have played it. How do you feel about the outcome? What does it tell you about yourself? What does it tell you about the way that you come across to others? What does it tell you about your own character traits, your perspectives, your values, your positives and negatives, your strengths and weaknesses, what you possess and what you lack? And what is the danger of there being no counter energies to your own dominant character traits? Where is the imbalance? Can you identify what differences (or different kinds of people) you may need to be around in order to be healthy and happy? Having done this exercise, what do you appreciate most about yourself? And is there anything you want to change about yourself?
In order for humanity to become healthy, instead of dividing further, humanity at large would benefit by borrowing from and becoming the very best of each individual culture. Imagine a humanity that has the enterprise of the Americans and the passion of the Italians and the precision of the Germans and the affection of the Brazilians etc. If we get into reality about compatibilities and incompatibilities, we can create an arrangement between us that is the exalted form of the integration of our differences. The same goes for the more microcosmic level of individual people and the way their differences enrich in each other’s lives. Having done this exercise, how do you enrich other people’s lives? And how do they enrich yours?