February 12, 2007

An anecdote from an Advanced College Essay assignment

Keeping an open-mind is crucial to living harmoniously and growing effectively. The more limits one places on him or herself the more one is excluded from the full experience of life. Labels and prejudices hurt the self as much as they hurt other people.

Tolerance is perhaps one of the most crucial tools a person can have as they grow and become a functional citizen of the world. Lack of tolerance leads to lack of understanding which leads to divisions and polarizations which have trapped all of mankind into a cycle of war, destruction, pain, oppression, recovery, freedom, and then war again. We don’t realize that we’re more than just neighbors, we’re roommates. It is you and 5.999999 billion other people all living together. We all live interdependent of each other. It is a world where independence and interdependence exist simultaneously. No man is an island.

The world is the island which we all can share. Find beauty in that which is beautiful and also that which others say is not. Look at things from different perspectives. Strive to understand what something looks like to someone else. You'll find that no one person does anything wrong from their perspective of the world. Every person is justified, if only from their point of view.

Have faith and trust that man is inherently good. Trust in yourself and believe that you are supposed to be here – that you are valuable. Have tolerance not only for the world but for yourself. Keep an open-mind and let yourself see the world for the wonderful and beautiful place that it is.

-- Jordan

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