You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty. ~Mahatma Gandhi
Our Humanity puts us in touch with our empathy and compassion, which can lead us to forgiveness. Nadine Collier, the daughter of Ethel Lance, the 70-year-old victim of the Charleston shooting, spoke of her forgiveness for the shooter Dylan Roof. “I forgive you, You took something very precious from me. I will never talk to her again. I will never, ever hold her again. But I forgive you. And have mercy on your soul.”
Intolerance and prejudice stem from fear and ignorance. To heal this we need to educate our children and ourselves on the value of other cultures, beliefs and peoples. An attitude of open-mindedness and tolerance in our schools, communities and nations can bridge the differences between cultures and races. We don’t have to agree with others beliefs, only respect their right to have ones different from our own.
Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one's own beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others. ~ John F Kennedy
Even those of us who believe ourselves to be tolerant and free from prejudice may be subtly biased. Sometimes it’s important to acknowledge that there are differences. Growing up in America as a black person is not the same as growing up as a white person. In fact, practicing racial “color-blindness” may be a form of intolerance. It’s ignoring the reality that differences exist. Humanity is realizing that we share a common bond with all people, despite these differences.
Our Humanity is what connects us to one another. In a global world with warring nations, cultural differences, and racial inequities, it is of great importance to remember that there is more to each one of us than color, nationality or religion. We are all part of a global community, the humans in humanity.
How Strong is your Connection to Humanity?
You can assess your connection to Humanity by taking this quiz from the Greater Good Science Center.