Truth is what is. Bias is how I see it.
-Me, 2020 (but probably someone else has said that before me, I dunno)
I might see something a certain way, and focus on it a certain way because of the perspective I’m viewing it with. Someone else may see it a different way, because they’re seeing it from a different perspective. The truth is, there is a thing to be seen, and it doesn’t change just because others see it differently. The thing, whatever it is, is what it is and we need self-awareness to realize that we might not be seeing it the same way as everyone else. We also need humility to say “just because I’ve always seen this from this perspective doesn’t mean it’s the only way to see it.” We should be willing to walk over to the other side and see things from their perspective, just as they should see the Truth from ours.
Now read that last sentence again, because I don’t want you misunderstanding. I’m not saying we should go to the other side and automatically agree with someone else. That would imply that the other side is truth, which is just as dangerous an assumption as saying my opinion on something is truth. No, what I said was, go over to the other side and at least SEE what the other side sees, to better understand where they’re coming from.
That’s not compromise; that’s called compassion.
Yeah before you abuse, criticize and accuse, walk a mile in my shoes
– Elvis Presley (On Stage, 1970)
Here’s an illustration I made to better explain what I’m talking about…
Now, when you look at the colorful image from the front, it’s clear that there is an equal amount of red as there is blue. Yet, depending on where you’re standing, you might see more of one color than the other. That’s called perspective. As a result of your perspective, you might come away with the idea that one color is more prominent (or even important) than the other. That’s called bias.
The TRUTH, however, is this: Both colors are equally represented. And the only way to know that is to walk around to the other person’s location and see for yourself. You can also take the other person’s word for it, but let’s not ask for miracles here. The point is, if we ONLY focus on bias and never seek truth, we’ll never grow, never improve, never better ourselves. Conflict and hate always arise as a result.
So here’s the application. Now, mind you, there are a lot of ways to apply this, both in terms of the COVID-19 situation and the racial unrest that’s still going on in the country. But it doesn’t have to be a hot button issue that you apply this principle too. For example, you can apply it to your preference for movies or books.
Just because you don’t like something doesn’t make it wrong. Right and wrong are matters of Truth. You don’t get to decide Truth. God does. When you say something is wrong that God did not, you’re judging based on your standard of righteousness, not God’s. That’s what is condemned in Mathew 7…
Do not judge, or you will be judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.
-Jesus (Mathew 7:1-2)
This happens too many times, too.
Someone doesn’t like a movie, or a book, or a song, etc, and they tell everyone “you shouldn’t listen to that, read that, or watch that!” Well…maybe YOU shouldn’t but I’m fine, thanks. And besides, do you really want to be judged on that standard you’re using against everyone else? Because there’s always going to be someone who has something they don’t like about what you watch, read, listen to, wear, say, do, etc.
Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them?
Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends.
-Gandalf the Grey (The Fellowship of the Ring; A Journey in the Dark)
End of rant.