I would rather be known in life as an honest sinner, than a lying hypocrite”-Unknown
I was on my way to the airport the other day and the cab driver was listening to some talk radio. They were ranting about how hypocritical it was of Leonardo DiCaprio to be this huge environmentalist now yet he was part of the movie ‘The Beach”, in which the filming of caused so devastation to the beach in the Phi Phi islands that they shot it on. They also mentioned actors like Russel Brand and a few others, who are also activists for change, and pointed to the fact that they were all hypocrites because they make money and are well off.
I think that it’s all too easy to dig up someone’s past, or even present, and point out all of their faults and say, “See, look, they’re a hypocrites. You can’t listen to them”. How easy it is to forget that we are all sinners and could surely be viewed as hypocritical on numerous topics we stand on now.
Yes, we can point out this one thing, regarding DiCaprio, but should that completely negate the fact that he has dedicated so much of his life to change? Should we not listen to people because they were once the ones that they are now speaking out on? Should someone’s past dictate whether they should be allowed to see the light?
I for one would much rather listen to someone who has actual lived on the other side and turned their life around than to someone that has only viewed these things from their very biased, uneducated, inexperienced perspective.
I find this to be one of the biggest reasons for the misunderstandings, which leads to fear, which leads to hate, which leads to suffering, that we have in this world. We think we know a person, religion, nation, etc., from some limited experience, or for the most part, none, and have them all figured out. Most of us get our “education” from what see, or should I say, what we are fed on television.
There is a great quote in the movie ‘Leap of Faith’:
“If you want to give up the bottle, who you gona talk to, someone who’s never touched a drop? And if you wana give up womanizing who you gona talk to, some pale skinned virgin priest? If you wana give up sin, and I believe everyone here tonight wants to give up sin, who can lead you off that crooked road? You need a real sinner people.”
I would rather listen to people that I know have struggled with the same things that I have tell me how they persevered than to someone who has only read about it in a text book or learned about it from watching TV. How could that individual possibly even speak my language? This is a big reason I try to be as vocal as I can be about the struggles that I have faced in my own life. That way those individuals who are in the midst of something similar can look at me and find some hope.
We must all remember this; regardless of which side you are on, or what you believe, everyone thinks that their point of view is the ‘right’ one. That’s the issue with beliefs, who’s to say what is right and what is wrong, that’s really just a matter of perspective. Sure, there are some universal truths, but even those are really still just perspectives when it comes down to it.
I guess what I’m trying to say is the more we can understand that we are all a lot more alike than different, the more we will be able to come to understand one another, even if we don’t agree, and hopefully slowly bring this world closer together. We are either going to move forward together or we will all perish apart.