We're all the same, just in different ways...
Your prison is the summation of all the things that have happened to you in your life. No one else has lived all of those experiences in the same way that you have. Yet, your prison is similar to Other People's Prisons (You down with OPP?). Every cell has that large cinder block foundation made of materials like "mammal", "land dweller", "earthling", "puberty", "birth", "knowledge of death". These blocks are held together by mortar made of sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell... just like every other prison cell in the place.
Of course, that spot worn in the floor where you pace back and forth, that's somewhat unique. Every cell has one, but some are short, some run the length of the cell, some are deeply marked from constant frenetic pacing, while others are light and barely noticeable. Some inmates pace, desperate to escape, some rarely pace, perhaps forgetting that they're in prison.
The material in your wall and bars, well those are less common. Not everyone has that chunk of bricks labeled "raised conservative christian", but you might be surprised how often that one makes an appearance. Some cells don't have the bar made of "liberal politics", but oddly, the ones with the bar made of "conservative politics" appears almost identical in so many ways.
Hell, even that spot where you took a sledgehammer to the wall and built yourself a nice rec room... its not entirely unique. Other inmates have also remodeled their cell. Your remodeling is still distinct though, but are you really proud of being the only one that selected the "Elvis on Velvet" decor?
So what difference does it make? We're all in prison cells, we can never break completely free, we didn't even get a say in the early development of the walls and bars. Why should we care if our cell is entirely unique or full of similarities?
I'll tell you why.
Every belief, every experience, every brick and bar of your BiP has a flaw. It can be broken, busted, rusted, knocked loose and replaced with something slightly less constricting. Not every brick and bar can be broken with the same sledge. Not every guard can be knocked out with the same barstool. Not every tunnel can be dug with the same spoon. However, similar bricks and similar bars can often be broken or removed in similar ways. We are not all the same, but the similarities mean that we can learn from each other. If the guy in the cell next door finds a way to break his "conservative politics" bar, you may be able to learn from that when wriggling your 'liberal politics' bar loose. When someone knocks loose the brick made of 'betrayed love', you might gain some insight on how to dislodge that same brick from your wall.
We are all unique. Uniqueness allows us to put information together in new ways, it allows us to stumble on new ideas and it provides us with an experience that will never be duplicated. Yet, we can say the same about that pig who died for your bacon, that tree that died for your hickory smoke and that kitten you gave half of your breakfast to. Not so special now, is it? Everything that lives and dies is unique and will have a unique set of experiences... whoopie.
We are all similar. Similarities allow us to communicate. Similarities allow us to have compassion, empathy and the similarities allow us to learn from the similar experiences of others. The uniqueness is not so special, however being able to share, analyze and act on the similarities, THAT is some pretty special stuff.