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August 22, 2010 / Astor ICS

Tolerance is not Acceptance

We hear the word ‘tolerance’ a lot these days. It usually implies a permissive attitude of differing opinions or personal qualities like culture. But inside that word are some other meanings that have some other effects and usages.

The concept of enduring something that one doesn’t like (key word; enduring) and resisting the effect of medication are also common meanings. All three of these are built into the word tolerance. In machinery, it means a permissive range of variation.

What comes to mind is two perspectives of one thing. On the one hand, it’s quite positive, saying that we are fine with differences and even respect them. But on the other, it suggests that one has that heavy feeling inside where there is a distinct limit. As something approaches that limit, we become more and more pressured until we explode.

This is not what are goals are in working within other cultures.

We should be moving towards acceptance. Acceptance is the act of taking something offered or being well received. This seems as a logical and positive version of what people are trying to get at when they say tolerance. Think about it. We can accept people for their differences and then be open to learn and react. When we show tolerance, there is an inherent implication of a boiling or freezing point. It moves us in a direction were there is a specific end. Considering acceptance, we can freely move into agreement or disagreement without questioning the existence and rights of others.

Contact Astor ICS to discuss moving forward with your international projects to insure fast and quality results.

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