Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Extending an Olive Branch

Recently I was thinking about arguments, disagreements and grudges both new and old.  In some cases, either the injured party or the one causing the problem makes some kind of gesture to clear the air.  Or, more often than not, ignore the problem and just move on.

This had me thinking about the expression “Extending an Olive Branch.”  It is a very old expression coming from the Roman times.  The Olive Branch is actually quite fragile.  Easily broken, and yet its meaning is one of strength and repair.

It is very easy to get one’s feelings hurt.  It is very easy to blame another person for a situation gone badly.  And, it is very easy to come to conclusions that validate our own view and dismiss someone else’s.

What is not easy is admitting we might be wrong.  What is not easy is to get out of our own head to look at the situation from the other person’s point of view.

Perhaps if we stopped caring about who is ‘offering the olive branch’, and just agree to call a truce, or perhaps if we stopped getting stuck on who did what to whom, we would get along better in a world that has enough tension in it without our adding to it.

Really, is the fight, disagreement, or misunderstanding truly more important to you than the person is?

Think about it?