Forgiveness does not mean ignoring what has been done or putting a false label on an evil act. It means, rather, that the evil act no longer remains as a barrier to the relationship.” MLK

You will never create a world with more peace and more tolerance if you continue to feel anger and contempt for those who disagree with you.

Loving your enemies is the hardest lesson to learn, but if you cannot find a way to be peaceful and tolerant towards those who oppose you, how deeply can you really believe in your vision of a better world? How can you preach equality and simultaneously write off millions of people as stupid and ignorant? How can you expect your enemies to listen to you if you refuse to listen to them?

There is something that feels good, righteous, powerful about being angry towards something we disagree with. Feel whatever you feel, but consider how often anger has worked to actually resolve an issue for you. Letting go of anger does not mean doing nothing. It means no matter what happens, you stand up over and again to recommit to the path of peace. The second a hateful person has power over your emotions & actions is the second hate wins. When you let love rise above in your own heart, you reinforce the idea that love can win. You are better able to show others the power of love. Outrage may seem appropriate, but ultimately it adds to the net negativity in the world. It may be good for riling people up to want change, but it needs to followed up with thought and action that address the needed change.

People who are hateful have been modeled this behavior at some point in their lives. One of the scary things about Trump is that he is modeling this bad behavior to our whole country. This is exactly why we need to be peaceful more than ever. Hating someone who is racist will not be effective in making them love people of all colors. The already know hate. Your hate will only confirm their idea that hatred is an acceptable sentiment to have towards another person.  Maybe nothing will change their mind, but being an example of love at least shows them it is possible. It forces them to confront the idea of love, even if they cannot yet accept it. Love that expects nothing in return is a most powerful force. 

It is difficult to take the high road, especially when you find your opponent's views to be backwards, illogical, disgusting.  But when you are open minded and take the time to listen, you will be able to come up with a better and more effective solution than if you just act from anger or despair. Let’s be models for peace.