The biblical prophet Isaiah has a splendid little line that makes it into an old spiritual, “I ain’t a gonna study war no more.” Isaiah famously says, “[Many peoples] will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.” (Isaiah 2.4)
In American culture, we’ve trained for our culture wars for so long that the ways of that war are instinctive to us — emphasizing our differences rather than our commonalities, oversimplifying the nation into two sides rather than a wide multiplicity, waxing certain about things that are far from sure, dismissing someone and stomping away from conversation after seven words if we disagree with what we hear, and characterizing our opponents by their most extreme voices. It’s time to stop training for war. In this piece Ron Blankenhorn helps us train for unity instead. Do you have the 7 Habits of Highly Depolarizing People?