Tolerance is not indifference, but a generous regard and even provision for those who differ from us on points we deeply care about. To support tolerance-- which is not the same thing as lacking intolerance-- more is required than just a lack of certainty concerning differences at issue. We must also care about people. Genuine tolerance itself must be based upon assured knowledge of what is real and what is right. And it always is. It is not a "leap of faith." Tolerance is not the lack of something, but the expression of a positive vision of what is good and right, a vision taken to be solidly grounded in knowledge of how things really are. It has often been considered knowledge that all human beings are equally loved by God, and the call to tolerance was based on that knowledge. It was this type of vision, regarded as knowledge, that led to the abolition of slavery and legal segregation, for example. Such a vision, held as knowledge of how things really are, undergirds the possibility of a neighbor love that comes from the heart and reaches across all human differences. --Dallas Willard, Knowing Christ Today
I have been musing over this definition of tolerance since I first read it several weeks ago. It is a lofty one.
Do you consider yourself a tolerant person? Do you cultivate "a generous regard and even provision for those who differ from us on points we deeply care about?" Do you, really?
If-- like me-- you don't always, but wish you did, how would your speech, actions and habits of thought change?