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The Joy Of Intolerance Essay

4692 words - 19 pages

I assume that the feeling of evil is more widespread than the feeling of good. That is why intolerance as an attitude appears to be even more common than tolerance. This thesis is justified by psychological and sociological theories which, by analyzing the psyches of humans as individuals and of societies, explain why intolerance, destruction and aggressiveness control our actions so frequently. Therefore, in spite of positive intentions inherent in every person who dreams about being the best and living as decently as possible, an honest picture of our time evokes a rather pessimistic disposition. Although a lot has been done to implement a principle of ethical minimalism in society, at the same time there is also a moral approval — though with no one willing to admit it! — for integration mechanisms based on xenophobia.

Tolerance and its contradiction - intolerance constitute centuries-old problems of human existence. We have been disturbed by them over and over again. This is connected with man's constant longing for the paradise lost which is unattainable because of man's ill will. It is a consequence of the fact that each of us creates an ideal image of himself and a place in which he lives. We dream of a flourishing and cultivated garden-like city. Civitas humanitas can spread over the whole Earth and we do not lose hope in it. The only thing we do not know is who will be capable of building this civitas. (1)

Charles Peguy, whose style was described by Andre Gide as a style of the advancing wave which consequently moves back in order to mark even wider curve on the sand, created a vision of a paradise city almost a century ago. He wrote: "All people of all families, all people of all the lands which are distant to us and the lands which are close to us, all people of all professions, craftsmen and intellectuals, all people of all settlements, all villages and all towns, all people of all countries, poor countries and rich countries, uninhabited countries and populated countries, all people of all races, the Hellenic people and the Barbarians, the Jews and the Aryans, the Latin people, the Germans, the Slavs, all people of all languages, all people of all feelings, all people of all cultures, all people of all spiritual lives, all people of all beliefs, all religions, all philosophies, all people of all nations, all people of all states, all people of all nations, all people of all countries became citizens of a harmonious city, since it is not allowed for any of these people to be ruled out of this citizenship." (2)

It is a definition of intolerance. A miraculous, utopian vision, in which all people are given ability to co-ordinate their opinions and aspirations with one another. A beautiful dream, deriving an ideal organisation of society not from a critical approach towards the already existing here and now but 'searching for good models in the non-historical cosmos'. (3)

What does this withdrawn from the real world image...

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