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wundayatta's avatar

How do people become more tolerant?

Asked by wundayatta (58714points) October 4th, 2011

Can tolerance be taught? Or can it only be experienced? What experiences do people need in order to become tolerant of others who are not like them? Is universal tolerance really possible?

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16 Answers

DrBill's avatar

by practicing tolerance

Blackberry's avatar

Leaving home, travelling, seeing things, meeting people etc. I also don’t think people should stay in the same small town for the majority of their lives.

ANef_is_Enuf's avatar

I think that exposure helps a great deal. People are most often intolerant of things that are unfamiliar to them.

boxer3's avatar

Having an open mind,
the willingness/desire to educate themselves-
as well as learn from others (directly and indirectly. )

Knowing that there are many ways of life,
outside of their own, and that they are different
vs. one being right over the other. If it is about specific
individuals, learning their “story” and knowing a bit
about their famiy often times sheds some light on to why
a person is the way they are. Though that doesn’t always make it right
it can often constitute more tolerance and understanding.

For me, I think it’s important to evaluate a situation at hand,
decide what’s really important- and where bias
or opinion can come into play.

Self Evaluation, IMO is also very neccessary.

SuperMouse's avatar

We could start right here on Fluther. We could put some effort in to being more accepting of the beliefs of others – even if we don’t hold them ourselves. We could avoid calling those who think differently than we do ignorant. We could disagree without being disagreeable and not think ourselves better than others because we perceive our beliefs as being more enlightened than the beliefs of others.

I believe tolerance can be taught. I think that it is incumbent upon me as a parent to begin a dialog with my children that helps them understand that no two people are the same and they cannot expect everyone to think they way they do. I have to teach them as well that different doesn’t necessarily mean wrong or ignorant.

Is universal tolerance possible? Sure, most anything is possible. Is it probable? No.

OpryLeigh's avatar

When I find myself feeling intolerant towards someone (which is quite often at times!) I try and put myself in their position. How would I feel if someone was acting intolerant towards me? I also try and remember that we all think differently so, what may make perfect sense to me won’t necessarily make perfect sense to others. I’m not saying my way is always succesful but it certainly helps me check up on myself at times.

Cruiser's avatar

When people experience loss(‘s) from making intolerant choices they can learn to be more tolerant. Some call this an experiential education. ;)

Hibernate's avatar

Because without tolerance we’ll just grew apart really fast and we’ll be really sad.

Ela's avatar

For me, tolerance is achieved through patience and perspective.
It is not so much accepting their beliefs as it simply respecting them.

dabbler's avatar

Learning to recognize intolerance as it begins to well, we can replace it with sympathetic and understanding thoughts wilfully.
Not necessarily easy depending on one’s habit. But practice makes perfect.

GabrielsLamb's avatar

By intentionally cultivating it as a means to an end with a purpose to actually achieve it.

*Some people prefer it not even exist at all because then they wouldn’t be allowed to be A-Holes. *Which is actually counterintuitive if you think about it, but whatever?

Joker94's avatar

By having some of the holes in their logic exposed, I think. Also, it always helps to see both sides of an issue or idea, especially first-hand.

GabrielsLamb's avatar

@Joker94 You mean by teaching them, with kindness and patience… Right?


“The most fatal flaw in logic is the fact that it is expressed through the human being.”


I think we can learn to be more tolerant, but intolerance will always exist as long as there are differences——between the races, the sexes, governments, religions, nations, etc. Differences breed intolerance and prejudice. It’s within our nature.

aarongmoore's avatar

I think the more we learn about the universe, the more tolerant people become of others because they realize we’re all homo-sapiens. None of us are perfect. As people become humble, they also begin to be more accepting of others who are different from themselves.

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