Can we create tolerance by being more tolerant?

Why are we closing ourselves off from those who think differently?

Why does our instinct to be right also often elicit the desire to prove someone else wrong? Can’t we both be right about our experiences; without it being at the expense of someone else, or without name-calling or trying to shame others for differing perspectives?

I see so much ‘outrage’ on all sides and I don’t understand what its accomplishing. The arguments don’t seem to be advancing us, I hear stories of old-friendships ending.

What if our instinct to categorize based on broad-based, artificial labels was instead replaced with a simpler approach — learning from a person who believes what they do because they are unique and are surrounded with unique circumstances?

What if the instinct to condemn, was instead replaced with the instinct to learn why?

What if fearing what’s different turns out to be the problem, and the rest of our experiences are meant to teach us this lesson?

What if we’re solely judged by how well we navigate our own journey, not based on an end-destination or what we make anyone else do?

Is my pain less real if I don’t scream? Can’t I be right if I don’t prove anyone else wrong?

Often when I engage in conversations I do so because I like solving challenging problems with people. In order to be successful, I can only be as strong as my partners’ and my willingness to actively participate, own our roles, hold ourselves & each other accountable, and solve problems together. If anyone wants to join that quest for civility and resolution, I’m always down.

I look at our country and our news and social media feeds, and I see so much anger. Can’t we heal the discord and have more civil disagreements to learn from each other? If our leaders and news media won’t do it, can we? Are there words so dangerous they can’t be spoken, and likewise openly, vigorously challenged?

Most people seek safety, liberty, and opportunity — can’t we all talk about ways to protect the whole herd and give everyone the best shot at achieving those virtues?

Wouldn’t winning together be a better goal? Always working towards the highest functioning team by recognizing everyone’s strengths and areas to improve so we can all help each other when we fall, without judgement? Just because it’s the fastest way to learn, to do better, and work towards greatness?

Dalai Lama: “In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.”

John 8:7 King James Bible: “So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone among her.”

King Solomon, Proverbs, 24:16 “A righteous man falls down seven times and gets up.”

Quran 41:34 “Good and evil are not alike. Repel evil with what is better. Then he, between whom and you there was hatred, will become as though he was a bosom friend”

Does anyone else see respect-for-differences as a desirable state to work towards?

That’s where I want to live.

And I wouldn’t mind some company to challenge me.

I hope we can all be different, and united.

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