Bias serves no good purpose. To be biased means to have preconceived notions, or prejudices; in essence to pre-judge someone based upon their looks, words and/or actions. Therefore, bias is the opposite of disinterestedness. We are all guilty of some degree of bias. Sometimes, to remove bias from our lives, we need to step outside of our comfort zones, and open our minds and hearts to others.
How often do you avoid talking to someone that you don’t know well, just because of their looks, assuming that you have nothing in common? Ever hear the phrase, ‘don’t judge a book by its cover?’ Well, here’s a great example of disinterestedness in action (lack of bias) as told in a short story narrated by my friend, Tony Agnesi titled, “Girls with Purple Hair.” Take a listen; it is only 3 minutes long, but filled with virtue, especially the virtue of disinterestedness.
Who would have thought that a teen with purple hair could be so caring? Bias, or prejudice, would have us think negatively of this young woman, simply because of her purple hair. Yet Tony Agnesi sees life with an open heart and mind. He saw beyond the purple hair and entered into a conversation with the young woman, curious to know more about her. He took the time to get to know this person. Needless to say, by Tony being disinterested in her hair color, and interested in her virtue, Tony got to see the light of Christ that day.
We can all take a cue from Tony. Be curious. First, open your eyes and look around you. Find that marginalized person. Open your heart and mind to him/her and enter into a conversation. You just might learn a thing or two; like you have more in common that you thought. By doing so, you will not only diminish your preconceived notions, you will grow closer to Christ. Remember, He dwells within each and every one of us; even girls with purple hair.
Do you want to go to Heaven? Then we best get acquainted with the next virtue on our list: Piety! We’ll begin discussing piety and the road to Heaven in our next reflection. Don’t miss it!