Balancing Tolerance with Intolerance 

Height of Tolerance

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. – The Bible

Our Mahatma, the father of the nation also quoted it and applied it in his Nonviolence Movement which became the basis of our freedom.

Tolerance is a divine virtue. The great men and women have taught us by displaying immense amount of tolerance through their lives. But the whole week’s discussion on the topic “Tolerance Vs. Intolerance” made it very clear that we lack this virtue within us today. We are getting intolerant as the days pass by. We don’t have that patience to listen to the reason behind a harsh word of a person. We have become so impatient and intolerant that we don’t restrain ourselves to talk back or slap or fight…

We always forget that starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so it is wise to drop the matter before a dispute breaks out and destroys everything. It is to one’s honor to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to squabble.

Intolerance is not maturity because a hot-tempered or intolerant person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient and tolerant calms a fight. Unfortunately, who understands it?

There is another angle to look at this matter of being tolerant or intolerant. Sometimes there are instances when we are too tolerant for the things which we are not supposed to be tolerant.

For example, when we stay silent and get interested to hear a gossip about somebody else instead of being intolerant towards the slanderer. It is really sad when we see injustice happening in front of our own eyes yet we don’t say anything but tolerate it. It is horrible to even think that we tolerate the very sight of the poor children walk around on the streets without food and clothes. We do nothing about it. We can make a big list of such examples if we sit down to think on it a bit.

The bottom line is we are well aware of our actions which are supposed to be displayed to others. We have adequate wisdom to decide whether we should be tolerant or intolerant in a given situation or in regards to a particular person.

How good are we in balancing Tolerance with Intolerance today?

Keep reading & keep pondering…

Stay Blessed!

Author’s Bio: Chiradeep Patra is a finance man who works in a NGO at Kolkata. He is a writer, motivator & counselor.