Gransnet forums

Other subjects

Is tolerance a weakness or a virtue?

(26 Posts)
DaisyL Mon 25-Jan-21 11:25:22

Sometimes I agree with people just because I don't want to argue with them and sometimes it is because I genuinely try to see both sides of an argument. I had an argument with someone the other day about families travelling to the countryside from the city to give their children fresh air. Of course it is wrong but a friend of mine in London tells me that it is impossible to social distance in any London park. It must be so difficult so I have sympathy and have no idea what I would do in the circumstances but is it worth arguing about or do you just nod in agreement?

GagaJo Mon 25-Jan-21 11:28:40

Depends if I feel up to an argument or not. Although I think holding your tongue all the time leads to blow ups. Well, it does with me. So if the people I am with are TOO contentious, at times I avoid them to avoid a disagreement.

lovebeigecardigans1955 Mon 25-Jan-21 11:29:57

I tend to nod in agreement as I prefer to keep the peace but I might try to point out gently that there could be reasons unknown to us for behaviour which seems wrong on the surface.

I think tolerance is a virtue but it can be seen as a weakness by those who take advantage of it. It depends on the situation, doesn't it?

3nanny6 Mon 25-Jan-21 11:39:29

I like to be tolerant as sometimes I do not feel like having an argument and pointing out what I think is a problem.

I am feeling somewhat annoyed right now as my Catholic church is closed due to lockdown. I have said nothing to anyone but it is annoying to still see two of the local mosques
conducting Friday prayers. I am tolerant to any faith or religion but aren't we all in this lockdown together and what is good for one is good for the other.
Rant over .

Jaxjacky Mon 25-Jan-21 12:04:23

I’ll take a ‘discussion’ so far, it also depends who it is, often I just state ‘we’ll have to agree to differ’ and refuse further chat.

eazybee Mon 25-Jan-21 12:10:38

Tolerance is not 'agreeing with people because I don't want to argue with them'; it means accepting that there are differing points of view about the same subject and it isn't necessary to argue about them.

Doodledog Mon 25-Jan-21 13:55:13

eazybee

Tolerance is not 'agreeing with people because I don't want to argue with them'; it means accepting that there are differing points of view about the same subject and it isn't necessary to argue about them.

I agree with this.

I think that seeing both sides of an argument is a good thing, and without at least trying to understand where the other 'side' is coming from, you can't really make a coherent argument for your own case. There are times when I can see exactly why someone is doing something, but I happen to think that they are wrong to do it, and other times when I agree that something is right for the person doing it, but wouldn't suit me. Tolerance is about acknowledging that one size does not fit all.

I'm not sure what the example in the OP is meant to illustrate, however. If you sympathise and can see it must be difficult, then why argue the opposite?

BlueBelle Mon 25-Jan-21 14:03:13

But I don’t connect toerence with arguing surely that’s a difference of opinion and can be quite entertaining
Tolerance is about acceptance of differences, not necessarily opinions surely it’s much bigger than just arguing

Madgran77 Mon 25-Jan-21 14:11:42

I'm also don't think that "tolerance" equates with "not saying anything". They are 2 very different and unrelated concepts

DaisyL Mon 25-Jan-21 14:57:02

Perhaps I've expressed it badly in my example - what I meant was that I am tolerant of people's different ways of behaving (ie parents driving children for exercise) but in order not to provoke an argument just agree with friend who thinks it is terrible. You can agree with me or not about that - not the point - what I am trying to say is that people who always appear to understand another's point of view may not in fact be tolerant of this but just don't want to argue!

Madgran77 Mon 25-Jan-21 15:30:33

what I am trying to say is that people who always appear to understand another's point of view may not in fact be tolerant of this but just don't want to argue!

Yes I agree with that Daisy

M0nica Mon 25-Jan-21 15:34:32

Depends how much I care about the issue involved.

grandtanteJE65 Sun 31-Jan-21 10:25:07

To me this would depend on the seriousness of the subject.

If something is morally indefensible or illegal, I would not just let it go, whereas if it was a small thing, I probably would feel it wasn't worth arguing about.

Smileless2012 Sun 31-Jan-21 10:34:17

I think you'll find it was your church's decision to close for services 3nanny. Our PCC voted 2 weeks ago to close because too many were not following the guidelines when leaving once the service was over.

As others have said it depends on the subject, there's often a place for agreeing to disagree, but not always.

biba70 Sun 31-Jan-21 10:37:04

Just depends- tolerance about what? As grandetante says.

Chewbacca Sun 31-Jan-21 10:41:52

Just depends- tolerance about what? As grandetante says. confused

It was explained in the original OP!

rosie1959 Sun 31-Jan-21 10:51:54

To be it's pointless having an argument about something you have no control over especially when it's not actually your business.
We do not have to assume we are right we have no idea of other peoples circumstances.

henetha Sun 31-Jan-21 10:59:27

The world needs more tolerance. But sometimes we have to stand up and say what we think. It depends what it's about.
In the OP's case, that was quite a dilemma really.

Granelly Sun 31-Jan-21 11:13:54

I try really hard to see the alternate point of view, even when I totally disagree, I still try to see their point. I have been SO tolerant all my life, and at times, I have put up with things that have caused me to lose sleep, not eat, over eat, cry, swear, you name it! The line between tolerance and weakness has been very skewed for me. My tolerance/weakness has made me put up with things that I should have kicked off about a long time ago. As I get older I now find that I am far more likely to just shrug and say 'whatever you want' and refuse to enter into dialogue, unless I'm pushed, and then I tend to bluntly say what I think, and finish it with 'and that's the end of it!'
I am turning into my Mother! smile

crazyH Sun 31-Jan-21 11:14:45

3nanny6, our Catholic Church is also closed but our Parish Priest livestreams Mass, not daily ofcourse. Check this on your church’s website . Last Thursday I followed Mass on Livestream.

Puzzler61 Sun 31-Jan-21 11:19:02

Tolerance is acceptance - not a weakness.
It reminds me of the prayer ....
“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference”.

rosie1959 Sun 31-Jan-21 11:31:02

Puzzler61- very wise prayer I use very often
Very poignant to friends of Bill W

Esspee Sun 31-Jan-21 11:51:25

I am happy to “beg to differ” with others and consider myself as extremely tolerant BUT I do draw the line with people like covidiots, conspiracy theorists and the like.

Cabbie21 Sun 31-Jan-21 12:23:02

I try not to be judgmental as I am not walking in another person’s shoes, but there are some issues on which I might speak out, preferably trying not to make it too personal, more a matter of principle. Not sure if this is the same as tolerance. I tolerate people’s foibles, even if I disagree with them.

Nemesia Sun 31-Jan-21 12:59:56

sometimes it is because I genuinely try to see both sides of an argument
The ability to see both sides is hopefully something we acquire with age and experience. Life is rarely “black and white” -with obvious exceptions.
Sometimes I think I envy the single-minded passion of youth when we “knew” we were right (?) but really I envy the wisdom of those who have lived, have experienced the good and the bad life throws at us and can stick to their principles without being self-righteous or judgemental.