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Far away in a forest, a bird hatched out of its egg. For the new born bird, things were easy in life. It lived in its comfy nest. Mom bird used to fetch food for it. All it had to do was eat and sleep. Soon, the time came for its first flight. Mom bird mercilessly pushed it out of the nest! Suddenly there was no ground under its feet. It was falling all the way down. Adrenaline rushed in. It flapped its wings desperately. Soon it began to fly well above the trees! For the first time, the bird saw how wide the world was. Until then, it had thought that the nest was the world.
Everything is relative in this world. We are at the center and other things surround us. Based on our knowledge in this world, the world can either be as small a bird’s nest or as big as the universe.
Only when we know things, we can understand them. Only when we understand things, we can accept them. This lack of knowledge or understanding is the cause for most problems in the world.
One such problem is judging someone. Belittling someone just because they can’t do something which comes to us naturally is not the right way. We need to understand where they come from. No matter what their age, we should consider how long they have been doing it and how long we have been doing it. They will get better at it as time goes by. Just like how we got better at it. And if they put in the dedication and effort, they might even surpass us. Before belittling someone based on their current skill level, we should consider their circumstances. We should compare from when we were at their age/ the time passed since they began. They might even be doing better than what we did at that time! Only considering what we can do now and comparing is not wise.
Everyone has different skillsets. They may know something we know nothing about. They may know many things we know nothing about. But thinking only in one dimension and comparing and looking down on them, as a human being we cannot grow.
We must not judge people against a pre-determined set of rules because everything is relative in this world. Not everyone can fit into a small subset of skills or ideals. We must understand this and judge the person based on their overall capabilities.
Another problem is taking a joint decision. When taking a decision that may affect two people, it’s always best to bring both perspectives to the table. Taking decisions unilaterally without considering the aftermath for the other person will not get us anywhere. Here, the important thing is that both parties should communicate and understand things from both sides before taking a decision.
After the decision is taken, both parties should honor the decision. They should stick by it. If any changes are done, often changes in the opposite direction of what was decided, it should not be done by one person alone. Deciding the change and not even informing the other person and the other person only comes to know after all things have been done will cause problems. When re-taking the decision, again both parties should be involved. Both sides should be given the opportunity to state their points. Only then, the decision should be changed.
The decision which is taken may not please everybody. But as long as it is good enough for the people involved in the decision, it is fine. Again, the decision is relative to the people involved.
From the moment were born, we are gaining knowledge and beliefs, about what is right or wrong and about what is accepted and what is not. We have been doing this consciously and unconsciously. Some beliefs have been put in us by our parents or those who we grew up with. As we grow up, we become more and more associated with our beliefs. So much so that whoever or whatever seems to not conforming to our beliefs, we either ignore or exclude. We sometimes even do harm to others based on our beliefs.
What we should understand is that one man’s meat is other man’s poison. Each one of us have our own belief system. We must understand that each one of us is different.
While we must follow the common beliefs of the society, we must not force our individual beliefs onto other people. Also, people should follow their own beliefs as long as it does not affect other people. We may follow some worldly wise people’s words, especially when we don’t know about a thing. But if we do know about a thing and the other person knows it in another angle, the other person may look down on us, but we should not let that affect us. We should not be discouraged by other people’s beliefs and words. They are right from their perspective, from their belief system. We are right from ours. At the same time, we should not ignore their side of the story. We need to listen, understand and take away the good points.
The beliefs can be as simple as what flavor of ice cream you like to what your religion, race or nationality is. When we don’t like a person because they don’t like the same flavor of ice cream as we do, then that is acceptable to some extent. When we hate someone and harm them because they do not belong to our religion, race or country, then that is immoral, though many of us may not realize this. If a group of people think the same towards one person or another group of people, this is where catastrophes happen. Each person perceives the world relative to their belief system. We must understand this ourselves to avoid conflict with other people.
We must look at all the beliefs in our belief system. We must classify them into what is really important and what hinders our goals and general direction of life. We must reiterate the necessary beliefs and remove the unnecessary ones. Our belief system should strengthen us and not weaken us.
Lack of knowledge is not the only parameter in all of these situations. Emotions come into play as well. Let us take the example of two such emotions, love and hate. We almost always look at the situation or person through the tinted glass of emotions. When we choose the Glass of love, the smallest good will look like a whole lot of good. However, we may ignore their bad. When we choose the Glass of hate, no matter what they do, we will always find fault with them. We may even ignore their good.
We must look beyond the emotions to see the true colors of the other person and then judge them accordingly.
Each one of us is 100 % unique, there is no substitute for us in this world! What we think, what we believe will for sure differ from the other person. This is why we should never be quick to judge. We should not belittle someone by comparing them with ourselves as they are unique too!
Decision making involves more than one person. We need to keep that in mind and decide for the collective good and not for an individual’s good.
Each one’s opinion and judgement is based on their beliefs. People’s judgement will always be clouded by their own perception and we should not let that affect us.
It is this belief system which is responsible for us not understanding the other person. They may not conform to our beliefs so we don’t understand them. This leads to further problems. We must look beyond our beliefs and try to understand their beliefs to understand them from all perspectives.
We must not be blinded by emotions and look beyond to see the world for what it is.
In all these situations, we must think from the other person’s shoes, but mostly this is not done. Mainly because we don’t know everything about the other person. It happens, one cannot know everything about the other person. It takes knowledge, experience and empathy to know the other person completely. However, certain people can never understand some other people because their situations are polar opposite. This is perhaps why men never understand women and vice versa. In these situations, the simple solution is to ask the other person what they want, how they feel, what they want to do. Communication is the key!
Once again I iterate, everything is relative!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Subhashini Vishnu