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Sunday, May 12, 2013

Race, Language, Debates and Tolerance!

Hey There,

Obviously by now, few people are purely one of these
Race relations are a very tricky territory to navigate because there are subtle nuances that offend others  intentionally or unintentionally, and at most times, they do not fall under the rational side of the spectrum. Our differing shades of skin, our differing land of origin, our differing religions and differing accents can be a source of incredible disputes. There are things that people will do with an innocent heart and with good intentions, which do not get received with pleasure. The cause of this is simply due to not understanding the other person. That is all. That can be fixed through discussion, but discussions are a rare pleasure. Discussions are rare because people choose to argue and defend themselves from seemingly being attacked when they have not been attacked but merely criticized constructively. Of course, some people will attack and not criticize constructively, but anyone with a thirst for growth and knowledge doesn't have time to attack people.

Regardless of your appearance, we have the same DNA
Is it necessary to fight over our differences? No, it is not necessary at all, but fights seem to be the easiest catalysts to humans understanding each other and communicating. This is why I don't fear arguments and debates, because they truly allow those who can not communicate effectively, a way to express their thoughts. Arguing  and debating is a good way to exchange ideas, but only if the parties involved are all committed to the goal of creating a resolution and reaching reconciliation. Well, at least if one of the parties involved is seeking knowledge, and not seeking to win.

Debates are often useless when people are attacking one another, calling each other names, and not concentrating on the matter at hand. Unfortunately, many people's egos are so wrapped up and intertwined with their ideas that, it is impossible to have a civilized conversation with them because they take criticism to their words and actions as an attack to their core self. Although it is something that people should eventually outgrow, this is the norm. It is normal for people to identify personally with their ideas that they think that their ideas are WHO THEY ARE.Idea are our creations. They are not WHO WE ARE.  This is when people make a debate counter-productive and try to deplete people's esteem instead of resolving an issue. Otherwise, if the parties involved in the debate can address the points presented to them, removed from the issue at hand and viewing it objectively, debates can actually be a source for growth and wisdom.
If one of these a missing, a misunderstanding can occur

Our differences in culture, language and general upbringing are a cause of a lot of disputes because people are generally not cognisant of how subjective life is. People grow up in their homes and their communities or in their heads, where everyone is similar to them culturally, and when thrust into the global world, they forget that they are no longer dealing with their familiar audience.  Then people say things, and do things that offend others, simply because it had never offended anyone before. What was once harmless then becomes a weapon. Where calling black people "monkeys" was funny, it ceases to be amusing and starts becoming offensive. The intention behind calling black people monkeys might be innocent, I mean, your childhood friend and dearest friend was black and didn't mind being called that, but now, it is suddenly an issue. Then a person feels attacked for doing nothing at all.

Instead of asking why it is an issue so that one can understand why something as innocent as calling another human a monkey can be a cause of great anger, one becomes defensive instead, and starts defending the act of calling people monkeys. And that's where the ego plays a role because the simple, least egotistical thing, and most tolerant thing to do is to stop the act that caused offence, apologise for causing harm unintentionally, and then ASK HOW YOU CAUSED OFFENCE so that you don't do it again. This is not about YOU, or even about the person who is offended, really. It is about gaining wisdom and understanding for your fellow human being.

Then once you understand that your innocent actions can cause harm on others, you can be more mindful next time, and most importantly, you would be better suited to navigate the world, because tolerance, understanding of others, and self-evaluation are the keys to unlocking a better quality of life.

We are One, just from different towns. 
When someone is offended by what you have said, you have two choices, really. The first choice is to perpetuate the anger and deepen the person's wound. The second choice is to help the other heal their wound. How you do that differs from misunderstanding to misunderstanding. Sometimes a simple apology can sooth frazzled hearts. Sometimes clarifying your intention and showing the other person that you meant no harm is needed. Sometimes it takes changing your behaviour slightly, compromising where you can. Oh, there is another choice. You can do nothing. This slows our evolution, but it doesn't stop it therefore it is perfectly fine to let offended people to their own devices. Of course, you don't have to heal other people's wounds. It is all a choice. The point is that, when a person is offended by a careless or even intentional word or act of yours, an opportunity arises for you to define yourself as someone who is supportive and compassionate, or as someone egotistical and self-obsessed, or someone who is not helpful.

Also, keep in mind that, for a person to even share that they are hurt by your actions is a big act of trust towards you. That is why you find that people don't argue with people they don't care about, or at least like. In fact, if a person doesn't trust that you are capable of better, if a person thinks little of you and finds you too primitive to evolve to a level where you can engage with them intellectually (or emotionally), a person usually doesn't say anything to you, but instead, they mumble curses at you, or complain about you to other people. For a person to challenge your thinking, it means that they have some investment in your thinking, for better or for worse. They care. Otherwise, they would leave you to your idiocy and let you remain in your ignorance of being inappropriate and self-defeating.

Use these tools before attacking or feeling attacked.
And remember, people are not looking to change your mind when they challenge your thoughts. They are merely asking for you to understand their perspective. If they are trying to change your mind, that too is also quite primitive. We give people information (how we feel) and let them choose what to do with it. We do not   indoctrinate(impose ourselves on
) people.

With Love,

Me

X


2 comments:

AbsintheDragonfly said...

I find when things are one sided, it's hard to stay objective. It can be easy to also slide into using ego with our speech.

As always, I enjoyed your thoughts :)

Absy

Veronnica Wolpendz said...

Manda Bear!!!

Thanks for your comment. I know... humans act irrationally most times... :)

xoxo