BWA co-organized a workshop with BFRCD (Bahrain Foundation for Reconciliation and Civil Dialogue) on tolerance titled “We tolerate to ’ for young adult females and males. The workshop was held on Saturday, January 14th, 2017, at Swiss Bill hotel at Seef district. Men and women young adults from different sectors of Bahrain society attended the workshop, wherein they stressed the importance of this subject especially with the societal and the world terrible conditions, and said that we all need to get trained on how to practice the culture of tolerance to reduce and limit the disagreements and conflicts, and to promote the culture of dialogue to accept the differences as a universal norm. The workshop aimed to spread the culture of tolerance, to discuss ways to practice tolerance in our daily lives, and to study the reasons hindering people from communicating and converging with others who are different.
At the beginning of the session, the trainers mentioned the misconception of tolerance meaning in the society, as it is used as a synonymous with forgiveness or amnesty, while they have two different meaning from ‘tolerance’ which means “Allow others to express their opinions, respect those views no matter how seemingly contrary to what we see and believe. The cornerstone is the existence of different and contradictory opinions, and therefore we need to respect the expression of contradicting ideas to ours. As for any profound idea, there is another profound idea on the other end, and so on.”
A number of motivational activities were included to highlight the importance of differences, diversity, and variances in society. The training workshop emphasized on delivering this concept: “Our lives thrive with diversity and variety of colors, hence becomes more beautiful, but it loses its shine and beauty when it is one color, since different views and ideas on various issues is due to individual differences, cultural backgrounds and experiences, not necessarily they are correct or complete, and hence we have to allow others to express their opinions and listen to them.”
The training workshop participants discussed obstacles deterring tolerance and the reasons behind refusing the different ‘other’, those obstacles include prejudice, extremism, bias, and nescience to the different other. Real-life examples were presented to illustrate those obstacles. The training workshop concluded by stressing the necessity to knowing the different other and focusing on the human commonalities between different views and sects and build on them to enforce communication and convergence with the other.