Common Ground

A dear friend recently sent me an advertisement from the Danish government that challenged people to step outside their defining boxes of us/them.
I found it very intriguing so I thought I would pass this article on to our Kehilla.

As we know it is sometimes very difficult to find things that we, as human beings, have in common. Even though we profess, as Jews, that we are all made in God’s image, we often struggle applying this concept to people we dislike, distrust, are different from us, we are afraid of, or disagree with.
The exercise they show in the video makes it clear to people of very different social and economic strata and politics to see and acknowledge their commonalities rather than their differences.

It starts with a large group of Danes who have different opinions on immigration, religion, those they trust, those they avoid, and those they think they share nothing in common with. Everyone is in their box with a big gap in the center. Starting with questions like, Who of you were a class clown in school? Who is a stepparent? Who was bullied or bullied others? Who works in life saving profession? Teachers? Who is madly in love? Who is lonely? Who is bisexual? And who was lucky enough to have sex last week? Slowly everyone stepped out of their box and everyone was standing in the middle. People were laughing and talking to each other. It seemed liked people realized how similar they are.

This exercise certainly made me think how easily I judge a person and I hope that I can stop and listen to someone else that I disagree with and find common ground. Certainly in these times when the us/them narrative has become mainstream we can try and not get caught up in the things that divide us and notice the many things that bind us as human beings.

I know this isn’t the regular message from Social Action but it is about Tikun Olam, repairing the world.
We will be serving dinner at The Palms on Wednesday, March 18.