Years ago I came to a conclusion I return to often:

People tend to act reasonably in accordance with the world they’ve be presented with.

In this age of polarization and anger (and now, war), I find that phrase all the more potent.

Who is someone who is doing something you disagree with?

It’s important to remember that their worldview generally feels cohesive and sound to them according to their narrative, the things they’ve read, and the experiences they’ve lived. And that, generally speaking, the actions they are taking tend to line up really well with that worldview.

Think of a group you disagree with. They almost definitely are congregating online somewhere that you can find and access. It can be really helpful and enlightening to just go and read what they’re saying. Don’t post. Just read, watch, and learn.

See how they communicate with each other. What are their hurts? Where have they been wronged?

Empathy opens doors.

Or, at least, it can help us be more compassionate in an age that’s lacking that.