Today I was reminded that understanding, not tolerance, is a two way street. I thinknit might have been my mother that shared with me many years ago that in order to understand a person and their issues you should try to walk a mile in their shoes. I was reminded of that again today during my weekly readings for grad school. I think that there is a misconception about peace, that it stems solely from tolerance. I here the term tolerance tossed around alot in the general direction of social justice and equality. However, I believe that tolerance like toliet paper runs out at some point. Understand is something that can, and should last a lifetime. You may need to be reminded of why and what you understand, but you should maintain the initial conception your entire life.
If you want understanding, you have to try to generate towards others. Please don’t confuse understanding and the acknowledgement of “otherness” as an acceptance of things you may disagree with. Understand, in my definition pertains to deep knowledge of and perspective on the topic. You can understand how and why someone may like, love, hate or loathe something or someone based upon information gleaned, but you dont have to agree. This is the paradox that critical thinking can only help you become comfortable with.