I recently just watched Beyond Our Differences, a documentary about human beings coming together to celebrate their common humanity. It’s discusses setting aside our differences – especially religious differences, which are some of the most common sources of hatred, hostility, and violence in this world. This film takes examples from all the world’s major religions – Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Confucianism – and shows us that at the core we all essentially practice the same values of love, respect, and peace and want what’s best for all of our human brothers and sisters.
Why then do we as humans always insist on focusing on what tears us apart? Does this help us progress in any way? Of course not! Instead for every step forward that we take in coming together as one, we take two or more steps backwards. We all hate being wrong and will do almost anything to prove that what we think or believe is right, even if that’s at the expense of others. We’ve seen this throughout history, and people from every religion have been guilty of this – no exceptions. Millions of people have died because of our differences, and yet if we simply focused on what we have in common most of these lives would have been saved. Can you even imagine this?
When I see people so closed off to another way of thinking that they don’t even want to listen or respect what someone else has to say it both angers and saddens me. So many people don’t even want to take the time to understand where another person is coming from. Instead they simply cast them off as being wrong because it’s not what they think or believe. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that I am perfect and not guilty of this too because I no doubt am. It’s hard to get past this wall in our minds because we all truly want to believe that we are right. I know I don’t like admitting I’m wrong any more than the next person! Admitting we are wrong about something can bring our whole world crashing down, and that’s a scary thought. It is something I’m trying to work on, and though I am a Catholic and believe that Catholicism offers the fullness of the truth, I know that there is some measure of truth in all religions and want to be open and accepting of others and their beliefs.
In the end it all comes down to this: LOVE. If we truly love each other as we are all called to do by our respective religions and beliefs, then we will be able to be more accepting of others as well. Then peace will rule our world.
Check out the film here at Beyond Our Differences.
UNTIL NEXT TIME…