Deeper than Tolerance

Over on Shilpan’s blog, he interviewed Life Coach Tim Brownson. Tim spoke of self-limiting beliefs and the value of tolerance and respect. One commenter suggested tolerance was fine but what about abuse and so forth. Tim spoke of the challenge of seeing our negative construct to which the commenter stood firm. I made a vague comment about deeper unity to which the first commenter asked what the heck I was talking about. I explained with the following, edited for context.

In your comment, you suggest tolerance means anything goes. That is not the case. Tolerance is live and let live but does not deny ethics and law. For example, free speech. One is free to express oneself as long as it does no harm to another. So hate and libel cross a line.

I’m not sure I agree with Tim that Tolerance will bring peace. The issue with tolerance is that it is conditional. We tolerate if. The issue comes down to ego. When the mind sees self as separate, it creates constructs, a story, to explain the world. We call this our belief system. The trouble is, the foundation of that is making self right. The only way to make self right is to make other wrong.

So while we may believe we are tolerant, there is an underlying story that our position is better. Should any conflict arise, tolerance flies out the window.

Our world is a reflection of ourselves inside. This is why we observe some seeing the world as well, others as difficult, others as bad. We will not find peace out there until enough of us find peace in here. And the only way to find inner peace is to step past that story of the mind and discover who we really are. That is where we find peace, the security unthreatened by other, and the happiness we have so long sought in people and things out there.

It’s difficult to “get” as its a different kind of experience but its also very simple once you see it.

When people find that inner connection, they are no longer motivated to fear, hate, violence and all the other effects of inner lack. Their values may be different, but they will no longer be in conflict.

What is a person to do about another suffering? That would depend on the circumstance. Sometimes, just be present for them. Sometimes, stand with them. But we can never do it for them. Each of us must find our own way. It is only for us to support them.

In that place of inner peace and security, the heart is then able to open, unassailable. That is the dawning of true love and compassion, without condition. We are not just able to love, we are love.

As that connection to who we are deepens further, we discover it is the same who as that in all others. There arises a deep intimacy with all life. How then can we be against ourselves?

This is what Jesus meant to love your neighbor AS yourself. The Kingdom of Heaven is within.

This may sound like complete woo woo to you. But this is what is happening now, all over the world. It may not seem it under all the noise, but this is a quiet revolution. A revolution in awareness. This is why people like Shilpan are writing about the soul and being popular. Why Eckhart Tolle is being heard by millions. Why there is now “spiritual cinema”.

One little trick is simple observation of how you respond to things, without blame. In Tim’s response to you, he mentioned how hard it is to see your own negativity. Your response was classic discounting and worst case, a perspective you have chosen and can change with observation. And there is great value in that change. In fact, you can’t change sweat shops by being angry about them. If you understand it deeper, you will see that being against something actually feeds it. What you put your attention on grows stronger. You want to put your attention on solutions, not on what you don’t like.

You are taking a stance that gets in the way of your own happiness and your ability to do something about what concerns you. Look first within, then all else will be added unto you.
Davidya

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12 Responses to Deeper than Tolerance

  1. Laurie says:

    Wow! I’m famous!

    In Tim’s interview, I didn’t say “suffering” I said abused. If my friend, or my son, or my old mother was being assaulted, abused, tortured, etc I am supposed to stand by them and support them in their efforts to fight for their life? No, I am in their fighting with them, because I love them and will risk bodily harm to myself to lessen theirs.

    I will tolerate another’s value if it doesn’t trample my own. For example, if you valued free expression of love and wanted to have sex in my front yard, I’m not tolerating that. It is trampling on my beliefs about what sex is and where it should be expressed.

    You are right, I cannot change sweatshops by being angry about them but unless I am passionate about them being wrong, I will accept them and do nothing to close them down. Our founding fathers here in the US valued being able to govern themselves. If they had not been passionate about their value, and will to fight for it, we’d be saying “long live the queen”.

    Anger in itself is not a bad thing. How one expresses it and what one does with the anger is key. I can be perfectly happy with who I am and know who I am and express anger to some injustice in the world. Jesus did say to love your neighbor as yourself, but he was also angry at the money changers in the temple because they were using the idea of the sacrifice to make money. Anger in itself is not always bad.

    “When people find that inner connection, they are no longer motivated to fear, hate, violence and all the other effects of inner lack. Their values may be different, but they will no longer be in conflict.” I believe there are many times when differing values lead to conflict. Isn’t that the whole idea behind all the conflict in the middle east and Israel? different religious beliefs and values?

  2. Davidya says:

    Hi Laurie
    Abuse is a form of suffering. And I did not suggest we should not act. But do you not see you are taking an extreme position? The point was how tolerance would bring more peace. There are ample examples in our history of intolerance leading to conflict unnecessarily. No abuse was required. Indeed it was often a consequence or excuse from conflict.

    Your comment goes on to illustrate exactly what i mean. Your tolerance is conditional. You also illustrate the point Tim and I both made – that you are choosing a negative position. You are welcome to whatever perspective you choose, but it’s important you see that you have chosen it and that there are better choices. The world is not what is portrayed in newspapers and on TV. They have found that what sells audience is negativity because there are many ego’s out there who are looking for examples of what’s wrong. They see the world as wrong, so look for confirmation.

    That’s a very sad way to live when we can empower ourselves with positivity. Happiness is not passive, it is energy itself, it is creativity itself. And in that you will find solutions, not in railing against people who might have sex in your yard.

    So I disagree entirely that passion arises only in anger. Certainly, that’s one way. But passion arising in happiness is much more powerful. Early US history is much more about vision than war. BTW – we also fought the British and won, but choose to still say “long live the queen” 😉

    Good and bad are purely judgments of the mind. No emotions are bad. I agree that how one responds is much more important. And anger has it’s place. But if we are ruled by anger, the servant has become the master, to the detriment of all.

    Yes, values can lead to conflict but they don’t have to. As long as we are absorbed in the need to be right and ‘win’, we will generate conflict. But if we are able to take a step back, there is always a way to resolution. I used to work for the police, so I know this.

    The problems in the middle east are because they’ve still not moved past school-yard one-up-manship and I’m the boss of you thinking. It has nothing to do with religion. If they followed their own faith, there would be no conflict.

  3. Laurie says:

    Believe it or not I am a positive person. I chose to use an extreme example to make a point. With both Tim’s and your views on tolerance, it sounded as if you are both saying “tolerance at all costs”. I don’t believe that so I showed obvious examples where one would not tolerate. While much of what others do can be tolerated, some things cannot due to the destructiveness of their actions to either people or society as a whole. There are some ideals worth fighting for. There are some challenges to truth that should be challenged. How can I value truth and tolerate lies? Live and let live? No. I realize the point was that tolerance can bring about peace but my point is to say that not all things should be tolerated. Peace at any cost leads to imprisonment.

    You say that my tolerance is conditional. Yes it is. It depends on if what you are asking me to tolerate costs too much on my part. Does it cost my freedom, my faith, my family, safety, society? These are things I value and will fight to keep.

    I am all about passion and happiness. I am about creativity, intimacy, love, adventure. My heart is full of love for my Creator and his creation. I am not a negative person. I am a passionate one.

    I didn’t say that passion can only come out of anger. I said that anger can lead to passion. I agree that passion is tied and very powerfully so, to happiness. I have recently started my own business and I am passionate about that. I am passionate about living fully alive.

    You say “Good and bad are purely judgments of the mind.” Are you talking only of emotions or behaviors as well? I don’t agree that all emotions are good. Pride is not good, jealousy is questionable. Hate? I’m ok with hate. Some things should be hated. I don’t believe there should be hate laws. I do believe you have the right to your emotions, even pride, but not all are healthy or righteous.

    If you are talking about whether actions being good or bad is just a judgement of the mind, then you are wrong. There are some absolutes here. Some things are wrong no matter how you slice them.

    The problem with the middle east has gone on for centuries. It is a bit more than a school yard fight. It has to do with differences in faith, philosophy, land rights, and values, and it seemed to all have started with Abraham being very impatient.

  4. Laurie says:

    PS, If they followed their own faith, there would be no conflict? Can’t be done when following their faith is to kill people who aren’t of their faith; not all subscribe to this I realize, but should those who do follow this belief, be tolerated?

  5. Shilpan | successsoul.com says:

    David – This is a fascinating conversation. I have to print this paragraph and post it on my desk.

    “Your comment goes on to illustrate exactly what i mean. Your tolerance is conditional. You also illustrate the point Tim and I both made – that you are choosing a negative position. You are welcome to whatever perspective you choose, but it’s important you see that you have chosen it and that there are better choices. The world is not what is portrayed in newspapers and on TV. They have found that what sells audience is negativity because there are many ego’s out there who are looking for examples of what’s wrong. They see the world as wrong, so look for confirmation.”

    Your wisdom is unmatched mate!

    Shilpan

  6. Davidya says:

    Hi Laurie
    We’re not quite on the same page here. I have no doubt you see yourself as a positive person. Most people do.

    No one said Tolerance at all costs. Both of us said otherwise. Indeed, I have said tolerance is conditional. Not just yours.

    But do you see how you have made this personal? That you feel you have to defend the downtrodden from abuse when all Tim was suggesting was more tolerance would be good. Not of abuse, just of each other.

    This is the story in action. When our mind is run by the ego, it sees self as separate and makes a story about everything. It then applies that story to everything it meets, looking for confirmation and discounting anything that does not meet that story.

    If you understand this, it is obvious you are doing this as your story does not match the point and you are missing the point. This is not a judgment or blame, it is simply an observation. If you can take once step back, and watch, you can see the story in action. You will see how you have not responded to what comes up, you reacted.

    This is very different. Respond means see and choose. React means automatic response, but the reaction often does not fit the circumstances properly. Then we wonder why we get an unexpected consequence.

    Those reactions always reveal what our unaddressed issues are. We do not see them as they are so close to us but again, if you understand this process, they become plain. You have stated them over and over.

    Our world is as we are and you are clearly telling us that you have a positive outlook but see the world as a threat and that you have to stand up to the abusers. You say, oh no, this was just an example. Yet it is always the same example, always the same story. How often do you tell this same story to others? Tell your friends of newspaper reports of abuse and pain?

    All of this is your sub-conscious asking to be heard. It is not hard to see what in your life you have not fully resolved. When the feeling comes up, stop and look. Where is this from? Who is experiencing this? Just this will help you see through the story and resolve what arises.

    I’ll come back to further points in a further comment.

  7. Davidya says:

    Laurie
    Some cultures eat dogs. Is that bad? Who decides? Judgment is the mind alone. It is valuable and has it’s place but if we judge from the story, we are making things wrong that don’t need to be. We may not agree, but we can allow them to live the life they choose if it does not harm. (ah, but even there we fall into gray area – what of people who think milking cows does harm?)

    Before, you quoted Love thy neighbor as thyself and now you are OK with Hate? This is a key point of the story. The story makes no sense. It is not logical. It is unconsidered, unconscious.

    All emotions are perfectly healthy if we allow the experience rather than holding them and if we see them for what they are and do not act on them insensibly.

    There are no absolutes in the world of man. It is only change. Only the mind sees black and white in a world with such a rich tapestry of colour.

    Killing is not part of any faith. That’s just egos dressing themselves as religious men, dumping their dramas on the world.

    You are welcome to hold whatever position you like. That is the nature of the world. Each of us has a unique view.

  8. Davidya says:

    Thanks Shilpan.
    Just remember that all tolerance is conditional. To find peace, we have to go deeper within. Then we will find peace outside as well.

    People do not realize how much of their lives is just the drama of the story. How dominant this is. We are so close to it, it is like its under the skin. But just seeing what comes up and choosing can begin to wind the story down. When we can connect to that peace within, we are able to take a step back from the story. Once fully seen, it dissolves like the illusion it’s always been.

    Under the story is light, happiness, peace, and security. It is quite ironic that that which we all seek is here, in our hands. The Kingdom of Heaven is within.

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