Thursday, 30 April 2015

Tame the prejudice in your mind

I see your racist transphobic homophobic sexist extremist behaviour rather the same way I see babies who are scared of eating greens. Pushing it away simply because it is.
You are just untrained. In your infancy. Underdeveloped. Primitive.
You have a chance, not many, but a chance to change your mind and be kind.

Being different challenges you. The same way any small animal hides behind its parents legs when it is unsure of something it has never seen before.
You hide behind ignorance and aggression.
Its fight or flight. And you are in fight mode because you hold prejudice against anything not being like you. 
But that’s not how life works. 
You must think you are unique in your own way? 
And you are. 
So why cant you see that everyone is unique in their own way.

Basically you are being childish, because you are scared of the unknown.
Everybody starts out this way. We are born this way to protect us from putting poisonous things in our mouths, letting predators near us or falling off the edge of cliffs. But we no longer need to live like the Neanderthal man, which is what you are being.
You need exposure. You need to understand.
That although things may be different, unusual and even challenge the order of the world in your head and your head only, you must accept that being different is OK.
It is you not being ok with it, that is not OK.

 Most people are as harmless as a brussel sprout, that green vegetable that as a kid, you swear you hate. After all green is a weird colour to be eating right? But, once you get to know it, to understand it and even to try it a bit for yourself. You soon learn it is ok.
Like training your taste buds. Which can be done by the way. We develop a taste for food when we are young by trial taste repeat, and it is how we continue to extend our palette as adults. 

Ever heard the theory to try something 14 times and by the end you will like it? 
Well it is true. 
I’m not the only one to try this. But I can assure you it works. Just one little mouthful, every time you can handle it. Eventually, through exposure, through being willing to try because you want to like something, you find your palette gets used to it and you eventually want to eat it.

Understanding diversity is a little bit like trying your vegetables.
Its all about exposure in bite size chunks until you get it. In most cases you will accept that actually, it is ok, and in the best cases you love it.

Now I’m not saying, to accept all people you should try being like them, but do read about them, try to understand them, be kind to them because you want to like them. 
It is a great start. Eventually through exposure to something new and through exposing yourself to the truth and not believing the fears in your head, you will be accepting of it.

Fear is built on thoughts. Thoughts are not actions. Thoughts can be ignored, changed or unvoiced. You don’t have to carry out your thoughts. It is your actions that count.

So if you find yourself repulsed by something, or insulted by people being unusual, or even scared that someone means you harm just by being different. Then don’t worry. You have discovered something new to you and this initial feeling is natural. Even more exciting…You can change. Just
keep your bad behaviour to yourself, sit and consider your thoughts and educate yourself. Next thing you know, you will realise that we are all just simple humans.

Most humans mean you no harm, they are all incredibly unique, beautiful spinning collections of the same matter as you. And if you understood anything about the planet you live on, you would know that all people are you, they were you, and when you are dead you will be them.

So do yourself a favour. Learn to eat your greens. Tame the prejudice in your mind. Turn fear into openness and learn to love your own species. Accept that people are different. And marvellous in their true identity. Revel in the marvel of the different colours of our skin. The tribal talents and tongues we can hear. The cultures and creations we can share. The incredible fact that for every weird and wonderful human being there is another perfectly matched weirdly wonderful soul to love them.

And by accepting all people. All those people love you.

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