The best class of human societies is those of the ladies and gentlemen – in the precise sense of those words. These are the guardians of all civilized societies. They mend the cracks and holes caused to the fabrics of the society by the ‘ruffians’ with their gentle disposition and sweet temperance. The best part of their force that helps mend and build a civilized society lies in their meekness and goodwill towards those that seek to tear down the fabrics of the society. In other words, the good manners that form the pearls of a civilized society proceed from their tolerance.
Perception and Tolerance
Our perception determines our level of tolerance.
Our perception determines our level of tolerance. There are direct consequences to the way we view the world, which also determines how we treat others. Perception is the kaleidoscope by which we color the universe we live in. It is the reality of an individual’s life experience, and determines how a person relates to the world. In essence, our perception determines the way we see things, their proportions and relations to one another.
We are either enslaved by our points of view and the choices we made, or liberated by them. Perceptions are amenable to reason, logic, truth, reality, facts and experience. They are always free to acquire but the consequences that proceeds from them are in invaluable – for good or bad.
Positive Attitude and Harmony
Approaching matters with an open mind is vital to having a richer life experience and forming healthier relationships
One does not have to adopt a specific doctrine and understanding to things for mere survival, but approaching matters with an open mind is vital to having a richer life experience and forming healthier relationships. Having a positive attitude or a point of view that is rooted in optimism is indispensable to having a tranquil life, harmonious business relationships, and is critical in pursuit of many worthy endeavors. In any case, if your point of view, central philosophy doesn’t improve your physical and mental wellbeing, and be an aid to your progress in life, then consider fleeing from it.
Points of view aren’t always static; our attitude on a particular thing can morph from being an asset into becoming a liability, or change from a liability into an asset by a simple switch in perception. If the point of view is base and always set in the negative, the person is probably setting self up for pain, struggle and failure. If a person have a pessimistic view of the world; looking at all that’s wrong with the world – that person will likely experience the world as painful and a miserable as imagined.
On the other hand, if you approach life with a sense of optimism, you will see your trials, challenges and temporal defeats as an opportunity to learn and grow. This will strengthen your resolve and enable you to plant new seeds of opportunities from every misfortune. In the life of an optimist; behind every closing door, a new door opens.
If you have a positive and optimistic point of view to life, it would automatically extent to the ways you deal with people. You’ll see the good in all; you’ll see new opportunities in all failures; and new possibilities rising from bad times. The attitude of optimism transcends our lives and goes to help us in becoming more tolerant in the society at large. To the contrary, if a person is a pessimist; such a person might only see difficulties and how ‘impossible’ it will be to carry on after any temporary setbacks. This attitude will also permeate into our relationship with others – making one more suspicious of others, and less tolerant in dealing with them.
Flexibility, which is an attribute of tolerance, is also one of the most valuable personal qualities in the modern world.
Flexibility, which is an attribute of tolerance, is also one of the most valuable personal qualities in the modern world. We live in a fast changing world where lack of flexibility and equipoise is a huge liability. A ‘closed mind’ would likely fail in places he could otherwise easily succeed, because his intolerance inherently places him at a disadvantage. In a world that is constantly evolving, the need to continuously acquire new knowledge, new concepts, and come to informed and unbiased conclusions is indispensable. To be in that attitude of reception to the ‘new’, and evolving with time, one has to be flexible and tolerant.
We should not always expect others to share our point of view because we think it is noble and has worked well for us. We should also not be contemptuous towards people that have a different point of view because we deemed their views to be beneath us. And we should not seek to impose our views on others with petulance. The best way to influence others is not always with facts, statistics or a mechanical display of superiority. Instead, show a man a point of view that commands his own by living it with humility and gentleness. By thus doing, people will see the truth that you know with clear demonstration and reason – without suffering platitudes.
Facts, statistics and other mechanical estimates aren’t always the best instruments to change perception or reform a person. People are more receptive to an idea when the source of that idea is sympathetic to their old views even if they oppose it. This gives one a greater opportunity to more effectively present new ideas by humbly personifying it. People are generally repulsive to arrogance or condescending behavior but receptive to humility and good manners.
We have an inseparable bond as humans. People of all nationalities, ethnicities, belief systems, abilities, disabilities and colors – are all brethren. Race or ethnicity has no real significance; it only helps to negatively compartmentalize our very humanity if we pay too much attention to it. If we step away from our old prejudices and false ideas of self-importance that rises from ignorance; this will serve us much better in forming a better perception regardless of our various racial or tribal backgrounds. This awareness will help us more readily extend our love to all – regardless of backgrounds.
Tolerance is also not a mutual agreement to commit suicide; it is unwise to accept prejudice, racism and belligerence of others like you would with point of views on other rudimentary matters. Society thrives on justice and stern support for the good. We should always take a stand against any form of injustice. We should also keep in mind that the base perceptions we despised of a person, is that person’s honest reflection of his reality. So they should be confronted with tact and gentle disposition, but also with firmness on principle.
Racism, wherever it exists, is a huge hindrance to tolerance. It is a standing threat to civility in any diverse society. On the other hand, societies are quickly becoming more and more diverse. One would think in the 21st century, the equality of all races would be common knowledge and a mute point to contest. Unfortunately, racism and other types of superiority complex still persist subtly in the greater society, and now thriving more openly in the fringes.
In the greater society, racism is more subtle but far more damaging and harder to confront. From the fringes, the basic tenets that embrace equality and the common origin of all people continue to be assailed and assaulted by false conspiracies and blatant lies. The root of racism is fear and ignorance, and can therefore be dispelled when met with the light of knowledge and a sense of common hopes and aspirations.
We should acknowledge and celebrate diversity in the high circumstances, but not for the lower impulses that seeks to divide us. In other words, we should refrain from obsessing over the superficial differences in appearance and embrace the great commonalities of human nature and the common interests we all share.
One must protect the sanctity of the mind and occupy own space in terms of thoughts and actions that directly affect ones own life. Such self-reliance is a spiritual element and should be carried out with calm prudence and good manners. Tolerance is always elegant and it’s best demonstrated through good manners. And good manners are always fashionable. It is the stream that facilitates the serene flow of tolerance.
By: Jamal Drammeh