This is one sentence which appeared over and over again in my text books while at school. I must say though I had gotten quite tired of it by the time my school life came to an end. But man a social animal, dependent on his
fellow beings in more ways than one, was a fact taught, discussed and, in a way, hammered into us. And why only in books, through the social fabric too the same was propagated. While I’d like to believe, and mostly it’s
true, that my survival as an individual is not at all contingent on being
surrounded by people at all times, I do know there are exceptions to this rule. Whether I
like it or not, there is a direct bearing of what my near and dear ones think of
me on my state of mind.
I need to believe and know that my family and friends accept me the way I
am for me to carry on living peacefully. And that’s alright as well but what
bothers me at times is that the perception of people outside my inner circle affects me too, sometimes more than it really should. I attribute this behavior
of mine to the very first sentence in this post. In fact, I’d actually like to add to
that. Man is not just a social animal but a social animal desiring acceptance. However, how far we accept and are accepted is a matter of choice, habit, upbringing and certainly something debatable.
As human beings you and I have this innate fear of the unknown, whether we acknowledge it or not. It is something that has defined our behavior over ages. History has borne witness to wars arising out of this intolerance for anything alien to our line of thinking. We all know what happened when Galileo proclaimed that the earth goes round the sun and not the other way round. Acceptance and therefore tolerance doesn't come easy to us. Of course, today as a society we are much better placed but you and I both know there's still a long way to go. But why am I talking about acceptance today? Well, perhaps these few points below would clarify that.
Peer pressure. You would have certainly been privy to this phenomenon at some point or other in your life. But why does this come into the picture in the first place? The need for acceptance, the need to be understood, that's why. You and I both know the horrors this unwelcome guest has often resulted in the lives of many over the years.
Acceptance into the family of the man or woman you love. So many fights, so many issues could be avoided if it came easier to all. The approval of our loved ones, no one is immune to that need.
Hate crimes stemming out of a chauvinistic mindsets. Race, language, religion or region, you name it, why do you think it still raises it's head and causes so much damage all around the world? The lack of tolerance of anything and anyone different.
It could also simply be embracing the tragedies in life and moving on instead of stagnating. Fighting for survival or happiness,all of it begins with the acknowledgment and acceptance of the need to do something.
Most important of all thought is the acceptance of yourself in your own eyes. After all, if you don;t love, respect and like yourself for who you are no one else will.
So, to end the day, let's promise to work on acceptance in place of intolerance for a change and take it from there. How does that sound? I leave you to think about it.