Tuesday, 7 June 2011
A core step to finding joy is connecting with other people. This can often involve bridging differences, with our partners, close friends, family, community, even other cultures. Most of us know how satisfying it can be when someone says, "You're right." And there is nothing wrong with that.
But when we get invested in proving that we are right and others are wrong, we break the web that connects us as humans.
When we take the stance that our way is the only way , we end up alone on a perch looking down on others. Sometimes, others who believe just as we do join us on the perch, but when we surround ourselves with people just like ourselves we don't grow or expand.
The dance of life involves learning to hang on to your heartfelt beliefs. It's fine to respectfully disagree without trying to change the other person. That way, everyone wins.
When people want to argue with the goal of proving you wrong you may start to feel trapped and invaded. I certainly do. I've learned to say, "I don't want to argue with you." If the person goads you to engage in n argument, you can simply say, "I prefer not to debate the subject. Let's just respectfully disagree."
There is an Indian saying, "Don't judge a person until you have walked a mile in their moccasins." It is a freeing experience to suspend your judgement, let go of demands, and imagine in the shoes of another. It expands our understanding, leads to compassion, and helps us become closer to one another.