There is a chasm growing between points of view. People are being told that perspective is a binary decision: you can only be one or the other, nothing in between. That is quickly followed by don’t trust the other side, they will deceive you and fill you with bad information.
I happen to be reading Mark’s Gospel and ran across Mark 7:15-23.
There is nothing outside a person that by going into him can defile him, but the things that come out of a person are what defile him.” And when he had entered the house and left the people, his disciples asked him about the parable. And he said to them, “Then are you also without understanding? Do you not see that whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile him, since it enters not his heart but his stomach, and is expelled?” And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.
The relevance for today struck me like a hammer — granted Mark was writing about food and I’m thinking social media. People (including myself) need to be open to new information, perspectives and opinions. Listening to someone you disagree with doesn’t defile you. It really expands your perspective which can open your heart and mind. The more you understand about another person, the more likely you are to find a common solution. And the less likely you are to see them as an enemy.
Don’t be afraid of new information. Use your resources to gather information, weigh it for validity, and think for yourself. This goes for both information you strongly agree with and information that makes you really angry. Verify it as those listening to you will think it comes from your heart.