How good are you at hearing things you don't want to hear? I bet your first reaction to the title of this post was to say: "he's an idiot and doesn't know what he's talking about". Sounds to me like thou doth protest too much, even if you may be right. ;) It's all fine and dandy when it's something stupid like that which usually comes from my mouth. How about when you and your significant other "need to talk"? Nobody wants to hear that, though in that situation they may be more inclined to resign themselves to whatever is coming, even if that means reacting explosively.
What then when they are things that effect the world in a much more tangible way (understanding that relationship-related stuff feels like it effects your whole world)? In my experience, the most common reaction is to get defensive. To close your ears to what you are hearing. Believe it or not, this came up in a conversation over a relaxed outdoor dinner. Donating blood (as a subject of conversation) moved to donating organs to organ harvesting particularly as it relates to Falun Gong/Dafa followers in China. A report by two "prominent Canadian lawyers" was released this week about the (alleged) practice of harvesting some 40,000+ organs for transplant from unwilling Falun Gong/Dafa followers leading to their deaths. Who wants to hear that? Really? Nobody. But there are those that don't want to hear it such that they will automatically denounce it (ie. get defensive). Others are likely "only" to be sickened by the thought. I'd personally like to be amongst the latter group. I want my mind to be open. I like to think that's why I often play the "devil's advocate" coming back with a "yes, but what about...?" That could just be me candy-coating my unwillingness to hear and believe something. Avoiding the knee-jerk response to those things is still something I need to work on. Maybe, just maybe, we'll all work on it and become a little more understanding in the process.