The Gates of Perspective Open

How open are we to possessing a broad mind-set, even if seeing the position of another can give us discomfiture? Are we able to give wise, reasoned, and considered counsel to others?

Teach us therefore to attain a heart of wisdom.
-Psalm 90

Before we volunteer our opinion on a matter, how long do we think about it? Do we just go along for the sake of civility in our lives? How can deepening our perspective bring about our enrichment, and bring us increased compassion and understanding for the lives around us — as we consider where we stand in relationship to God and the cosmos?

Who do we admire? Why do we admire them? Can we think of someone whose opinions we trust? Why do we trust them? How do we go about forming our opinions? What do we do with our discretionary time — beyond establishing a regular discipline of reading, how can we increase our perspective as we live our lives?

Make an intentional effort to meet people whose lives are very different from yours. Volunteer to be a mentor at an organization that thrives in volunteerism — for example, deliver food to the needy, or take someone who is otherwise home bound for an appointment. Make a plan to travel somewhere that allows you to see how other people live, or closer to home, make a regular effort to speak with people who you do not know well. Keep a journal recording your gained insights. In this new year, identify a mentor with whom you would like to learn and ask them to teach you. As a mentor, be generous with your wisdom.