Ending Divisions: Learn to Surrender to One Another


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Studio Shot of a Large Mixed Age, Multiethnic Group of Smiling Men and Women

Nicole Seemann, Editor In Chief

The ongoing recent events—the health crisis which has led to a fiscal crisis, the civil unrest, and the faith in our democracy being put to the test—provides us all with an important lesson. A lesson our parents have tried to instill upon us over the generations, but clearly we hadn’t listened. And that lesson is: we need to listen. 

Regardless of which team we are rooting for, the takeaway is this country was given a choice of two polar opposite views and paths for our future. And yet, except for a few votes here or there, we are split down the middle.

Our generation, one that does not yet have a voice, wonders how we got here. Our generation, who can take no action, is concerned for our future because if we can’t learn from our parents on how to listen to each other then how can we learn to accept—and dare we say—appreciate our differences. 

For everyone has both strengths and weaknesses, gifts to teach us or lessons we need to learn. It doesn’t matter what you believe or follow, but respecting people’s differences is at the core of every religion, every philosophy and our democracy. 

Every relationship is based on communication. Whether trying to cohabitate in a family dynamic or as a nation of equals, we must first learn to listen to the other’s perspective with the weight and respect it deserves.

So how can we get there? 

It’s in the DNA of all living things that self preservation should be top priority. To achieve this in both the animal kingdom and for mankind, individuals sought out strength in numbers. This perpetuates the misbelief that we are at our best only when we surround ourselves with like-minded people. The inherent flaw in this logic is it fosters stagnation. 

We all come into this world as a baby, perceiving all that is around us through the innocence of a child. As we are raised and influenced by our immediate and global environments, we grow a pair of glasses. Each person then defines themselves and their values through the filter of their glasses. This is our ego. As we mature, we tend to only see those things that prove to ourselves that we are correct. The more we invest in our own egos, the more we become divided as a people. The answer to inclusion over seclusion is simple. We need only to trade our glasses. 

After all, without opposing viewpoints to expand our perspectives, how could we ever grow? To achieve an openness to others we each must surrender our basic instinct of self importance, we each must surrender our egos, and recognize that we are each one in a world of many.