What many feel is uncomfortable, when faced with someone who’s different from who they are. This could be a visible minority with a polar ethnic background, displaying cultural divergence. We avoid someone who happens to be “book smart” and not “street smart.” The opposite sex can be puzzling.
We’re somewhat mystified by this diversity, so we often choose to avoid people like them. We ridicule others for their spiritual beliefs, the way they look, how they talk.
Everybody however wants to be liked, be accepted, and it hurts emotionally once we’re rejected.
What’s not granted is the opportunity to justify oneself, to explain our beliefs, or why we dress a certain way. The first judgment is often fatal.
Teach The World To Love
Almost everyone at one time or another, has been rejected by someone and the sting is felt.
This solely because of their religious beliefs, their body size, skin colour, ethnic background, their beauty, before a word is spoken.
Over time, what these experiences forces us is to question our own self-worth.
What are reasons why one individual is intolerant towards another. There are certain dynamics which are constantly in play, and swirling beneath the surface.
Fear Of The Unknown
Everyone is fearful of what they don’t know, especially once someone has no personal experience with others from a different background, culture, ethnicity, custom, or social class.
We all default into creating stereotypes. What stereotype is defined as is “A previous fixed or conventional notion or conception.”
What we’ve been taught somewhere, somehow, is to believe certain things regarding certain types of people, usually from our parents.
If you see a group of young ethnic kids who appears to be up to no good, wearing the same colours, you would assume they are headed for trouble, there could be violence.
If you were to encounter them alone at a bus stop nearing midnight, you would most likely feel scared, and wonder if they’ll cause you harm.
Who they actually are is a group of kids that’s part of a church choir, but what you defaulted to was systemic profiling.
Once you cross paths, you’d probably assume they’re about to create a crime or violate you.
Not only because they’re nearing, but because you’ve heard in the media of these types of “gangs.”
What we fear is what we don’t know or understand.
Feel The Threat
Another reason why we fear others who are different, is because we’re opposed by them. If they claim their religious beliefs are right, then ours must be wrong.
If someone dresses in a particular way and it’s trendy, and we don’t happen to dress the same way ourselves, we become an outcast, and not part of the crowd.
We should be driving the right type of car or own the latest smartphone, move and behave within the right social circles.
This is known as “Competitive Thinking.”
For us to be right, then someone must be wrong. For us to be accepted, we need to reject those who are different than us.
The Plight Of The Insecure
We are insecure about ourselves or certain aspects of ourselves. We attempt to compensate by acting cool, cocky, over-confident, to hide our insecurity from others.
In our overly competitive society, what showing weakness of any kind is a kiss of death.
We then feel the need to tear others down on social media, only to build ourselves up. We’ve become cowards hiding behind a monitor.
We do so by trolling those we don’t like or agree with, just to fortify our ego. All we’re doing is just diminishing our own image.
Most won’t sense you as a winner, but more of a cyber bully with a fake avatar.
They may not usually verbalize it, because you might turn your anger on them, but they will think it.
You’re not a self-confident person, but instead someone who’s arrogant in the simulation world we now live in.
Those Who Are Confident
Someone who has an aura of self-confidence has no need to tear others down, or reject or ridicule them.
Instead, what they’ll do is build them up, because they know doing so builds themselves up.
A self-confident person isn’t threatened by someone who’s different. They’re instead interested in learning from them.
They want to know someone who has a different perspective, a different viewpoint from them. They see value in sharing each others experiences.
We Are One Of The Same
Regardless of how different we may appear to be from one other, we have a lot more in common than you think. We’re all connected on a spiritual level.
There’s a reason why you meet and connect with certain people in your life, who stand out from the billions of other people out there.
Often, we’ll suddenly make eye contact with someone we don’t know in a crowd of people, and suddenly exchange a genuine glance or a smile with them.
This could be at a crowded fitness gym, a busy sidewalk, on a transit bus or at a party.
For a split second there’s deja-vu, where you know that person somehow, somewhere, even if you’ve never met them before.
There’s an exchange of energy that takes place, while you both acknowledge one other.
On a physical level, we as humans are very much alike, this in the vein we’re all wanting to be loved and be accepted.
We want to provide security and safety for our family. We all want to live productive, happy lives. At our basic core level, we are more alike than we are different.
Lets Find The Common Ground
Yet, we instead strive to focus on things we don’t have in common with others in this vast world.
Regardless of how different someone may appear, instead how finding things that are similar, we search for things that are different.
Diversity is a wonderful thing and a gift of the universe. The world would be an extremely boring existence if we were all exactly alike.
There’s a popular Sanskrit word, “Namaste,” which means “What the divine in me recognizes and bows to, is the divine in you.”
The journey becomes recognizing then grasping the diversity of originality in each of us.
This is what we need to strive for in our daily lives, in the uncertain turbulent times we currently live in.