This has been an incredibly difficult political season, in that it highlights the deep divisions among one another along racial, sexual, economical, and political lines....just to name a few.
And one thing I have been struggling with the most is to try and remind myself of how I talk about people that believe different than me. Because how I talk about them or their beliefs (if I do at all), will determine whether or not we can be in relationship with one another...and hopefully learn and grow from the mutual relationship.
But what happens most often is that we end up using exclusionary language (they, them, those people) that actually create more division and destroy the possibility of any relationship, rather than using inclusionary and embracing language (I, you, we, us) that pulls us closer to one another. And without the relationship, no progress can be made. It's the relationship that makes it safe for us to work through our ideas with one another, and to be challenged, and to grow. When it is unsafe, we are not able to do this, but instead withdraw and fight and name call.
I see this played out daily at a microlevel in my counseling office with couples and familes and individuals, but at the marcrolevel I am sometimes left feeling hopeless and inadequate that we can do the same.
So this is something that I need to work on myself, and I wanted to process this out loud with you in this episode.
Fair warning though, Martin Buber and Miroslav Volf were hard enough for me to read at a slow pace, so I hope I didn't totally do them injustice by drawing on their ideas and talking about them with you in this episode.
In this episode I also read two lengthy quotes form Volf's wonderful book, Exclusion and Embrace. Those are posted below so that you can read on your own as well.
Check out this episode and walk with me on this journey so that we all contribute to more positive change in our homes, neighborhoods, communities, cities, states and world...you get the idea...start with where you can directly affect change, and then go from there.
Episode 70, quote #1:
Episode 70, quote #2:
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Resources Mentioned in the Episode
Exclusion and Embrace by Miroslav Volf
I and Thou by Martin Buber