In today’s article, we touch upon a radical problem of ‘Intolerance and narrow-mindedness’ that prevails in a lot of our countries in this world, and which is dividing one human being from the other.

Countries that are overwhelmed with the idea that ‘their belief, religion, their colour, their nation is the only correct one in the world’, are unable to accept views, beliefs, or behaviour that differ from theirs. Media contributes its own share of conservative views and consequently,a large part of the population ends up developing intolerance that drags themselves into enslaving or even killing of humanity;and walking over the fundamental laws of love, live, let live, and coexist with everyone.

In such a scenario, our crucial objective becomes that of saving the budding generation from this menace...

How do we teach our child, living in a homogeneous society, to be tolerant towards all forms of diversity that exist in the world?– turns out to be our prime challenge in today’s times!...

In a homogenous society there is a strong sense of the ‘us’ and ‘them’ divide in the minds of the people. And our objective is to take our child to the level where the “us” in his mind means to include every living being irrespective of the belief one holds; and the “them” refers to the internal enemies that invade his love for his fellow-beings.

This challenge requires a level of cognitive development that many adults, included well-educated ones, have not yet achieved. So let us try adopting simple, scientific and spiritual approach to meet the challenge-at-hand and see…

What do we want from our child is a behaviour, a way of acting, right?
But a little reflection on this point reveals, that we want something more than the behaviour. We wantthe behaviour to be an outcome of his genuine inner feelings towards others. And where do these feelings come from? They come from the way he understands what the world is all about, from the way he gets to knowwhat the real truth of the matter is.

So, in order to change the feelings, and the behaviour they cause, the understandingof the child needs to change; his consciousness needs to change from that of an egocentric (me and them) to the world centric (all of us).

1.Vital Role of a Parent
Every young adult has the potential power to help the entire world; he just needs the right guidance and support. Without such guidance, the youth has turned selfish and has adopted a very self-centred view of life. This guidance is best given by parents having right understanding.

Kids closely observe their parent’s attitude. Therefore parents who want to help their children value the diversity, must first themselves demonstrate that attitude of respect for every living being and change their own consciousness from an egocentric to the worldcentric one.

2.Right Understanding leads to Permanent Happiness
Do you know that we do not know our Self as yet?
Yes, that’s a fact. The answer to ‘Who am I’ is still a mystery!
Currently your child believes “I am this body or this name.” And therefore, if someone attacks him or his beliefs, or acts against his wish, he cannot tolerate it.

But what if he gets the right understanding of his Self?
He will experience nothing but permanent happiness because that’s an inherent property of his true Self, and he will realize that the happiness attained with his body or name were temporary.

So, getting the right understanding, at an experiential level, of:
•‘Who am I’ and
•‘Who is the doer of everything that happens in this world’
Is the effort that one must indulge into, at the earliest.After Self Realization, he will experience his life to be very different from what it was before. Teaching tolerance is not required anymore.

Depending on what degree of the circle one is seated, he / she can see the truth through that perspective and viewpoint, isn’t it? But can we call it the final truth? No, the ultimate truth is at the centre, from where one can see and understand each and every angle clearly.

Similarly, every religion has its own viewpoint and it is correct by that viewpoint. One who comes to the centre is able to see the complete truth, and therefore has no prejudice,notbiased towards any religion. He will never tell anyone that your religion,your faith or your belief is wrong for he very well knows that every religion or belief is correct from its individual viewpoint.

We can gently and impartially explain to someone that ‘this is not good’, but we cannot object if they still want to continue doing it. That is what is meant by not hurting the foundation. In order to get there, we must teach our child to pray,
“Oh Lord, please give me the infinite inner strength to not hurt the slightest, nor cause someone to hurt, nor encourage anyone to hurt the foundation of any religion. Give me the strength to conduct my speech, thoughts, and actions in a manner that is accepted by all and everyone.”

When our words, thoughts and actions become free of negative opinions and hurtful intentions, whatever we say shall be heard and accepted by all, regardless of their religious beliefs. There is no question of tolerance then coz everyone will be at peace with each other.

4.Adjust Everywhere
There are different belief systems, faiths and religions in this world; and to adjust with them is ‘our’ religion. We suffer because of our opinions, which do not let us adjust. If we rise above all opinions - good or bad, right or wrong –we automatically become tolerant to people’s beliefs.

When we adjust to the other person in every situation, life becomes so beautiful. After all, what will we take with us when we die?So, incorporate the phrase ‘Adjust Everywhere’ in your life and peace will take a permanent hold within you. You don’t have to be tolerant then...

Developyour child’s potential to be able to listen to any viewor discuss about any belief,with an open mind. Open mind means when he understands both negative and positive, and thus remains in the positiveso that negative won’t arise. A person with a narrow mind would say, ‘I understand,’ but in reality, he does not understand. One can give a correct opinion only if he has an open mind.The broader the mind, the greater is the freedom one experiences.

Distractive forces that create disturbances in keeping an open mindexist in everyone. But make your child so strong that he has the power to quieten these forces withinand maintain an open mind.Mind becomes open when he learns to avoid clashes, and closes when he expresses intolerance or gets into conflicts. Why do we want to spoil everything through conflicts?...

6.Nurture human values in him:
Teach him by various means, that when the human qualities of kind-heartedness, fellow-feeling, understanding, consideration for each other, tolerance, gentleness, tenderness, benevolence, generosity and magnanimity manifest as virtues in our worldly interactions, these virtues first gives us peace and thereafter spread love and peace to everyone around.

7.Repent for the wrong deeds:
Part of the solution is to help your child “see” the problems. Ask your child if he thinks it is right to exclude someone because of the color of their skin or because of the belief they nurture. Ask him how he feels when this is done to him.Try to make him understand that the opponent is hurt by this behaviour of his, and therefore he must seek forgiveness from God for his mistake. Inspite of this, your child’s behaviour of intolerance may continue for some time, but each time, teach him to repent for his mistakes and thus correct his inner intent.

8.Freedom from Contempt:
One can never be free as long as he has any kind of contempt. Educate him that ‘contempt towards anyone results in that person harbouring revenge towards you.Owing to contempt, we hurt someone’s ego, we become harsh in our behaviour, become rude in our speech, and criticize unnecessarily,...’

The solution is to pray,‘Oh Lord, please give me the infinite inner strength so that I...
•Do not hurt anyone’s slightest of the ego by my speech, action and thoughts, nor do I cause someone or encourage anyone to hurt the ego of any living being at all.
•Donot to criticize, offend, or insult any living monk, nun, preacher, or religious head.
•do not, nor cause or encourage anyone to, dislike or hate any living being,
•Donot speak, nor cause or encourage someone to speak any harsh or hurtful language towards any living beings, even to the slightest extent.If someone speaks in harsh and hurtful language, please give me the strength to speak softly and kindly in response.
•Donot, nor cause to nor encourage anyone to criticize, offend, or insult any being; present or not present, living or dead.
•Become a useful instrument on the path of salvation of the world.”

These prayers are most important,in order to teach tolerance to our child.It will bring about a miraculous effect, when done regularly. However, they are meant to be done heartily.

Do not bother if your child cannot act according to the prayers. All he has to do is ask for strength, and the strength will start accumulating within him.
The work will then get done automatically and will result in the desired change in his behaviour.

Know more about tolerance by clicking on this link

Author's Bio: 

Ambalal M. Patel was a civil contractor by profession. In June 1958, spontaneous Self-Realization occurred within Ambalal M. Patel. From this point on, Ambalal became a Gnani Purush, and the Lord that manifest within him became known as Dada Bhagwan. A Gnani Purush is One who has realized the Self and is able help others do the same. Param Pujya Dada Bhagwan used to go from town to town and country-to-country to give satsang (spiritual discourse) and impart the knowledge of the Self, as well as knowledge of harmonious worldly interactions to everyone who came to meet him. This spiritual science, known as Akram Vignan, is the step-less path to Self-realization