Want To Help End Global Divisiveness?

Doug Sandlin
Sep 5, 2019 · 5 min read

Stop Fighting The Ideas In Your Own Mind. The Results May Surprise You.

It All Starts With You

This “it’s all about them!” (any them) business has gotten way out of hand. There isn’t any them, outside of your own imaginings about them (any them).

Not only is it not actually about them, but the them in question, is just an idea in your mind; it doesn’t actually involve other people, at all.

So the first step to healing — to making whole — yourself and the world around you, is to recognize this, and to realize that you can change those ideas in your own mind, by no longer giving them any attention.

This can be hard to do, because some people spend a lot of money to try to manipulate you into thinking that they are the problem — whether that false story is about immigrants, conservatives, liberals, socialists, Muslims, Christians, Jews. atheists, the LGBTQ community, or any other group with a population of millions to billions of people.

Globalized Negative Stereotyping, aka Bigotry, Is Never True

The idea that anyone other than you is the problem, especially on a massive scale, is a misplaced idea in your own mind. The reality is that almost everyone, in any given group, is probably someone you’d get along with fine, if you knew them personally. Everyone is a person, who has arrived at this moment in their lives with a vast set of individual conditioning, which precludes any ability to accurately stereotype them.

And anyone you evaluate by any single label has a large number of other labels that apply to them, whether it’s gender, religion or lack thereof, race, sexual identity, political inclinations, profession, or any number of other qualities to which labels can be applied.

This is especially true, currently, in the political arena in the United States, but it applies globally, both in terms of geography, and in terms of the globalized prejudices people have — many subconsciously.

Many of us hear or read “Liberals are …” or “Conservatives are …”, followed by the fabricated, untrue statement du jour, which can never be true- on a daily basis. That’s because any label that you can apply to some conservatives or liberals, if it’s true at all, only applies to a tiny percentage of the whole.

It’s Not About You

Wait, what? But above you just read the opposite, right? Not exactly. It all starts with you, but it’s not about you. That’s because conditioning has nearly everyone’s mind filled with untrue ideas not only about others, but about ourselves, as well.

Our own ideas that cause us to fear others, or to wrongly imagine superiority over others, cause divisiveness within ourselves as much as those false ideas about others do.

The Cure

All divisiveness arises from misperception of self and others.

The cure is to stop paying attention to such vain, conditioned imaginings, and to be here now, whether you are by yourself, or with others.

Photo by Thiago Barletta on Unsplash

Connecting With People Is The Key

Changing ideas in our own minds can be hard. Especially deeply embedded prejudices or self-referential fears, all of which are aided and abetted in a major way by our emotions, and biological reactions to perceived threats.

So how do we cease perceiving them as a threat? It’s very simple: get to know them — any them, by connecting with and helping others.

Everyone is just a person, and most people are fairly easy to get along with.

And so, I’d challenge you to take the action step of meeting and connecting with at least one person from a group you fear — or doing so as well, if you fear connecting with people. Or both.

The reason for this is that it’s a very rare thing for someone to get to know someone they have prejudice toward, to be able to maintain that prejudice after getting to know people from the feared group. And connecting with people is always a great way to overcome any self-referential fears, as well.

Try it — you’ll see — because it’s essentially impossible not to. Humans are hard-wired to connect with and help others — and the key to ending divisiveness is to stop seeing them, and to start seeing people as they actually are — as people, just like you, or at least far more like you than they are different.

And if that’s a tough idea for you to drop, well, connecting with people works just as well for getting rid of that false idea, too.

How To Connect With People

Volunteer a bit of your time each week, based on an interest you have, or, if you’re really up for a challenge, based on a fear you have.

You’ll meet and connect with people who are different enough from yourself that you’ll have a much easier time seeing that any and all divisive ideas you have are simply not true.

And that’s the first step to letting them go, for good.

Almost everyone feels disconnected from at least some others, and from their own authentic happiness — and giving by volunteering a bit of your time each week helps to release the false ideas that cause that sense of disconnection, and by extent, the illusion of divisiveness that prevents so many of us from creating a better world.


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