‘Waiting on the world to change’

19 Jul

This is the fifth post is a series, Project: 50 Questions, designed to take Snap, Crackle, Pop into a slightly more thoughtful (and probably long-winded, you have my apologies in advance) direction. Enjoy!

5. What is the one thing you’d most like to change about the world?

The No. 1 thing I’d change about the world is people’s ability to understand one another. Nothing in this life is black and white, and I think we wish it was. We want things to be cut and dry, to be able to easily make our point on any hot button issue (from big-picture deals like abortion to small-button complaints like parenting styles) and know that we are right, that someone who thinks or does it differently hasn’t a clue what she’s talking about.

But little in life is black and white. Things are so gray, there needs to be another color invented.

I truly believe hate is fueled from an inability — or unwillingness — to understand. In my experience, folks who think gays are going to hell, for example, have never actually had a normal conversation with a gay person. Folks who picket outside doctors’ offices where abortions are performed have never dealt with being told, “Your baby’s hormones are off. It is going to die. Would you like to wait for that to happen, or would you like us to help you now?”

I’ve never understood people’s obsession that everyone else think just like they do. I tend to assume it comes from insecurity — that they have beliefs, and those beliefs will be justified if lots and lots of people agree with them. Meanwhile, I like to seek out the other side. I think understanding others’ viewpoints helps us solidify our own. A Christian who wishes to understand Islam or atheism is not a bad Christian — I’d counter that she’s a smart one. She’s a curious one. She’s using that beautiful, God-given brain to understand her peers.

I can’t help but wonder how many atrocities could have been avoided if the power players had sat down and actually tried to understand one another’s position.

Previous entry from Project: 50 Questions:

4. When it’s all said and done, will you have said more than you’ve done?

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