WCS-004: Ex-skinhead leader Arno Michaelis describes his life AFTER hate


Join us as Arnoarno_michaelis shares how he transformed a life fueled by hate and racism into one that’s teaching love and compassion to the next generation.

About Arno Michaelis:

From the age of 17 Arno was deeply involved in the white power movement and became a founding member of the largest racist skinhead organization in the world. But love for his daughter and the power of forgiveness changed Arno’s life. He since has worked with a group of former US gang members and white supremacists to produce Life After Hate, a monthly online magazine dedicated to basic human goodness.


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Personal Mantra:

You find what you seek, so be careful what you look for.

(Inspired by colleagues, teachers and friends)

When he almost gave up:

 One of the young men he’d been working with recently had his parents and brother taken in on drug charges. It was frustrating to not be able to take the boy in and help as much as he wanted.

Finances are a challenge that makes it difficult to continue sometimes and devote as much time to doing what he loves as he would like to.

When he knew the work he is doing is making a difference:

A fourth grader came up and gave him a hug, then said, you made my day because I got to give you a hug. It really touched him and underscored our human need for connection and support.

A friend’s 11 year-old son who had read Arno’s book told him that he read the book (which included stories of the harm Arno had done to other people), and felt sorry for Arno. Arno felt that this young boy was showing an incredible amount of compassion.

Practical Advice:

Be responsible for yourself and the way your intentions impact the world.

Practice that keeps you going on the tough days:

Buddhist Meditation – 10 minutes a day.

Nomination for Upcoming World Changer Sessions Guest:

Pardeep Kaleka, co-founder Serve 2 Unite

Robi Damelin, Public Relations for The Parents Circle Israeli Office

Basam Aramin, Public Relations for The Parents Circle Palestinian Office

How to get in touch with Arno: