On the Importance of Seeing the Best in Others

No More Divisiveness. Or at least, Less Divisiveness.

“If we take man as he really is, we make him worse. But if we overestimate him … we promote him to what he really can be. So we have to be idealists, in a way — because then we wind up as the true, the real realists.”

People’s behaviors mirror the expectations that they either rise, or fall, to meet. Give people a higher standard to live up to and they’ll often surprise you by living up to it. We see this everyday when people choose to look for opportunities to lead and be positive role models in the world.

“My experience is what I agree to attend to. Only those items which I notice shape my mind.”

I’m not advocating wide-eyed optimism. Blindly hoping that everyone will get together and starting singing Kumbaya isn’t a solution. It’s a naïve delusion and nothing more. In this way, optimism is no more helpful than the cynicism we’re trying to counter.

“We must mend what has been torn apart, make justice imaginable again in a world so obviously unjust, give happiness a meaning once more to peoples poisoned by the misery of the century. Naturally, it is a superhuman task. But superhuman is the term for tasks [we] take a long time to accomplish, that’s all.”

The job of unifying this country belongs to all of us. The choice to see the best in others and promote unity may not be a natural one. But if we expect to meet the challenges ahead of us, it is a necessary one.

Enemy of the Status Quo.

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