18. Bad Tribalism

Bad Tribalism is the idea that our lack of experience of others prevents us from emapthising with them. A study of brain activity where participants witnessed different colour hands were pricked with a needle to cause pain. The more similar skin colour illicited more empathy. Difference less empathy. Empathy is biased.

Definitions differ but the outcome of empathy is always where we act more kindly towards the person.
As ever empathy is learnt at an early age, set down in family and childhood. So our own personal empathy has to be challenged. To be empathetic we have to be open to others’ experience however different from our own.

Emotions can be overwhelming and dominate us. Men are conditioned not to have emotions. So empathy is avoided. Bad Tribalism is allowed to grow. We have to appreciate what other peoples’ lives involve. What are their struggles? What is their pain? If our paths never cross this means that there is no shared experience or understanding.
Being empathetic takes effort.

Copyright Adrian Scott North London Counsellor Blog 2019
All rights reserved
Disclaimer: This weblog is the view of the writer and for general information only
This article is designed to provoke argument and critique


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