Updated: Jan 6, 2019
A few weeks ago, in the middle of the hot summer, we were sitting outside under a canopy of trees drinking elderflower cordial and enjoying the fantastic company of friends, slow summer life and the cool protection from the trees. We were speaking of life and death and everything in between and landed on the topic of tolerance. The whole conversation got me thinking about what tolerance is and where does it start.
We got onto the topic following a prompt from my son. He stated that for integration to happen, refugees, need to be allowed to work. We talked about integration and how integration starts with acceptance, how acceptance begins with tolerance and we left it at that.
A seed was planted... it got me thinking... so where does tolerance start and what is intolerance really all about? The more I pondered, the more I realised that it all starts with us. With our relationship towards ourselves, our hidden ideals and fears about who and what we are and are not. Fundamentally we reject in others what they reflect about us, what we do not like about ourselves. We get irritated, upset, frustrated and are intolerant of what we do not accept about ourselves. So what if the secret to tolerance was self-acceptance and self-love?
Could it really be all that simple?
I believe it can, and I invite you to think about it. What are your real triggers of intolerance? How do these reflect your inner fears and hinder?
Based on my experience it makes sense.
At the beginning of the year, I went through the Hoffman process; an intense experience of self-development aiming at forgiving your past and finding more inner peace. It was life-changing, to say the least. Probably one of the most significant steps I have taken in the direction of self-acceptance and self-love. And to bring it back to our topic; tolerance it was impactful. I find myself more patient and accepting of others; starting with my mum and dad! I have found in me the patience to love them for who and what they are; enjoy the time we have together and look forward to it.
Now, by all means, I am not saying that I am done, that I have it all figured out. What I am saying is that if we want things to change in this world, if we want to see more tolerance and acceptance, it needs to start with each and every one of us having the courage to look into the mirror and go on the long and challenging self-development journey. The journey of self-love and self-acceptance, towards total integration, the yin coming into the yang, the yang coming into the yin and both going together as a whole; an integrated whole in delicate equilibrium. A journey of discovery of ourselves, towards the essence of who we are and connecting with our true nature, our inner light!
I do believe there is a second component to intolerance: fear. This will be the topic of my next blog.
If your are interested on starting or continuing your development journey, please contact me for a coaching programme.