Written June 6, 2017
“Listen with ears of tolerance! See through the eyes of compassion! Speak with the language of love” ~Rumi
“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” ~ Dr Martin Luther King Jr
(Be sure to share this with the caption # Tolerance. Let’s spread the word that intolerance hurts us all in the end.)
“When you practice tolerance, you accept another’s ideas and beliefs. If you respect someone’s opinions – even if you disagree or find them nonsensical – you display tolerance.”(vocabulary.com)
There are two words in those definitions that sticks out. Respect and Accept(tance). When we tolerate another person who we don’t like or we disagree with, we need to respect them. We are not necessarily agreeing with them. We simply respect and accept that they are entitled to their own opinions, thoughts, and feelings just as we are respectfully entitled to our opinions, thoughts and feelings. Tolerance is one of many Spiritual Principles that we should live by. Honesty, open-mindedness, acceptance, unconditional love, patience, faith, hope, surrender, love, humility, and caring are just to name a few.
For some reason, the way things are today, we do not seem to be tolerating, let alone respecting each other. So much of the discourse we see today is political in nature. And as a reminder, this all began way before President Trump even announced he was running.
In a spirited debate, 2 people discuss, even argue their position on a subject. Often some sort of proof is sited depending on if you’re for or against the particular subject. Each person should respectfully listen to the other without endlessly debating on the issue(aka filibustering) or shouting down the other person. When we agree to disagree we are accepting the other person’s position on the subject. How can we hear what we’re saying to each other when we shout each other down? When we do this we are not only intolerant and disrespectful but we are also taking away that person’s Freedom of Speech.
We are supposed to use reasoning to debate instead of using force and violence to make someone obey. Many of our political leaders and mainstream media may not have started this trend but I believe they have fueled the flames of intolerance. Especially when they don’t denounce the violence that has erupted. Political parties supposed to conduct politics w/o bloodshed. When these political parties endorse, celebrate, embrace, condone or fantasize about violence they become militias. Imagine how different life would be if we’d been like this 50, 100 or more years ago.
Another way we are intolerant of each other is not including others because they have opposing viewpoints despite any similarities or similar viewpoints but obvious differences. Examples of this are recent African American marches not including white people who support their cause but their skin color is white and also a woman’s marched that excluded pro life advocates. Does this sound like accept(tance) to you? This doesn’t sound like tolerant left being intolerant.
I wrote a piece a while back on modern day civil war. If we don’t find our way back from all this fighting with each other, we will find ourselves in another actual civil war. I don’t think anyone wants that to happen. I for one know how some people are harder to tolerate than others but if we are to have any semblance of peace in this country and across the world, we need to begin by tolerating and respecting each other’s ideas, thoughts and feelings.
Remember, Respect is earned, not just given.
Thought for the day: Be sure to share this with the caption # Tolerance. Let’s spread the word that intolerance hurts us all in the end. “It all starts with you. “ ~ Trent Shelton
***Please be sure to read more of my posts