We all have them and if you claim you are sacred cow free, then most likely, we just stumbled upon your favorite bovine. Welcome to the barnyard, shake your boots off and let's have some fun. Vegan or carnivore? Build a wall or amnesty? Democrat, Republican or Independent? Christian or Muslim? Northern or Southern Africa? Pro-life or Pro-choice? Mac or Windows? You can spend the next couple minutes justifying your position and how everyone else that sees the world different is an idiot or we can take a humble moment to chat. Excellent, thanks for taking a moment to consider the cows for what they are; thoughts and beliefs that have made us the people we are today. This inquiry is about identifying the sacred cows, not confronting or tearing them down.
Clearly identifying those topics that are too sensitive to approach is helpful in knowing ourselves. Time has granted me the gift of patience and a willingness to listen, a bit. I don't write as someone free from the barnyard. I am still convinced that many of my cows are justifiably sacred. I believe that I am a bit more approachable and willing to listen and talk about my cows, even if they remain sacred to me. We must be able to discuss why we have the thoughts and beliefs that have shaped us.
Engaging in thoughtful discourse allows for maturation of our perspective. The opportunity to hear the opposing perspective must never be feared and allows for the nuances to be appreciated. This gift allows for engagement with another human being. Soon enough we will be bones in the grave swaddled in our precious beliefs. Now is the time to listen, engage, laugh, appreciate and learn. This life is too precious to push others away because there is a different brand on their bovine.
Going Further: What are the sacred cows your willing to discuss today that was met with a visceral response previously? What positions have solidified over the years? Can you engage in friendly discourse across these topics? How do you appreciate the opposing perspective, even if you don't agree?