Let's start with the most extreme opposite way people live in your community from you, the person who clicked over to read this post. Imagine telling people who are Amish about Instagram followers. Imagine what they'd think about visiting with people on Facebook instead of in person. Now imagine explaining to someone who has been rich their entire life how hard it is to come up with money for your child's graduation invitations and to pay doctor bills. Imagine explaining to someone poor that you never shop at Walmart & Save-A-Lot, drive a car or see actual poor people because you are so wealthy you have people who shop for you, drive for you and the places you go are exclusive to people who are only wealthy just like you. They do not know you can buy pants for less than $30 because they can pay $1000 for a pair and do. Imagine explaining to someone who has been famous since birth that most people go through their day with no one caring what they wear or where they vacation. Think about how hard it is to explain how important it is to be informed about world events with someone who thinks they should only be concerned with how their life is going in their own little bubble. Imagine how hard it is to explain why you no longer think that the things we all think are the absolute truth to someone who believes that life is an arrangement of decisions, skill and luck. We do not know what we do not know. We can think we do and we can imagine it in our heads but unless you have literally walked a mile in someone else's $1200 shoes you don't reallllly know.
That is where we are in this moment in time.
There are sooo many people living on this earth and living in so many different ways, with so many different ideas about how the world works based on their own life experience that it is dividing us more than we have ever been. Part of that divide comes from the fact that we have access to these different experiences through electronic media, without the actual firsthand experience to go with it. We can think we know what someone else's life is like but we cannot really know. The thing we will always lack is the experiences that come with living life every day for a lifetime. No one experiences life the same way as someone else. It doesn't even happen in families. There will always be things that happen to you on an individual basis that will impact you and the way you think. Even when someone else experiences something along with you, the way they interpret the experience will be different for the single fact that the lens they view through has been impacted by how previous life experiences have taught them to see how things are. This is why everyone thinks they are right. This is how you learn to make yourself the good guy in your version of the truth. Until we can all (me way included) learn to look at our beliefs and loosen the yoke of who we believe we are, separation will exist like it does now. Intolerance will be a way of life. I don't know about you but I'm sick of things being like that. We have to start being more accepting of others and more willing to think about the reasons we all become the people we are or the people we think we are. No one sees anything in this world without it being shaped by the way our life has unfolded. We only bear part of the responsibility for that. The rest is just circumstance and also as a matter of circumstance, we may not have the knowledge to free ourselves.
People whose parents were school teachers have all the skills in the world to become school teachers. People who have artist parents have all the skills to live that life style and to find their own creative outlet. People who have always been poor have all the skills in the world to remain poor. People who grew up in a home where drug deals went down have all the skills to become a drug dealer. Someone who was abused as a child has all the skill they'll ever need to grow up and abuse their own children. Paris Hilton is skilled at being wealthy and she actually had her own show about trying to live like poorer people that to someone who is poor, made her look ridicules at how little life experience she has.
Here's where we start. Square one is just giving a beat before we judge the person next to us. In that beat think about the road this person has been down that may have landed them right next to you. Then think about your own road and the direction it will take going forward in the next instant if you make a choice to treat that person like their life matters just as much as your own.