As I was moving through the ranks as a Karate-ka, I remember reading about martial art masters who stated that until you can see your enemy as yourself, you have a long way of going till you understand true Budo. This befuddled me at first, but as I investigated philosophy and meditative arts I soon began to understand...first on an intellectual level, then on a deeper, this is reality level.
You see, all things are interconnected. We are all made from the same 'stuff'. Since 49 of the 50 states has snow right now, let's talk snowmen or let's say an entire snow village. You have snow men, women, kids, dogs, cats, houses, streets, and so on. You can see the individuality of each form, yet all are made of snow. It is all snow just in different forms and shapes. Your ego simply confuses you in thinking you are separate.
Until you can see that all is snow...another snowman appears as a separate being. Until you understand that someone who is going to attack you is 'you' as well, your understanding of Budo is incomplete. To see the 'other' as 'yourself' actually allows you to enter into a different place of self-defense. Compassion reigns. You may still have to cause harm to the 'attacker' but your intent will change the events. Not sure if that makes sense, but that is all I can say about it without going off on a lunatic rampage of words that will even sound crazier.
So, see all as yourself. See yourself as all. Take this with you into the Dojo and play with it.
Hands palm to palm,
pic from coolholidaygraphics.com