"Tolerance is the eager and glad acceptance of the way
along which others seek the truth."
Sir Walter Besant
(1836-1901) English novelist
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Reader comments about this quote:
That tolerance could be close to this quote; plus of the individual and not the harmful or otherwise destructive act.
 -- Mike, Norwalk     
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US      
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN      
    I especially like the positive conotation of tolerance as being "the eager and glad acceptance" of another's way, rather than the negative one or indifference or condescension. Very good quote.
     -- Jack, Green, OH     
    Tolerance indicates that there is a perception of right and wrong. Atheists cannot be tolerant, nor should they be tolerated-- because since they neither believe in right or wrong, but in what "works", and since what "works" is completely relative, not only is there is no room for tolerance, but tolerance itself is insignificant. Tolerance indicates an elitist sense of knowledge (right or wrong) over another; that one person thinks one way and has to respect another's thoughts or actions. But this, in itself, is futile in a god-free zone. One could say that, in an atheistic world, society determines what is right or wrong, acceptable or unacceptable, virtuous or un-virtuous; however, the problem here is that society then takes the de-facto form of God over such atheists... Instead of following the dictates of a deity, controlling, defining, and/or determining what is right and wrong, atheists have to turn to society for the exact same thing. If there is no "right or wrong", only what "works", then not only is there no room for tolerance, but rather, like Santa Clause, it simply just doesn't exist. Let's just call it as it is.
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN     
     -- Anonymous      
    I wish I could understand what all that was about, Logan. It surely doesn’t depict an atheist; having to depend on society for moral guidance because he has no diety to do it. To an atheist it is experience and observation, just as a scientist does to test a theory. And even after he has “proven” his theory, he is still open to further data to disprove it. If a person sees no evidence of a god, how could he accept the dictates of one? The atheists long ago discovered nothing works like the Golden Rule, or the Law of Universality (what if every did it?) It doesn’t take society to answer that, although the gratitude and appreciation of others, or their condemnation at times, may help. We don’t have to ask a deity, or his mediator, in the form of a cleric, to explain it. Just how does God tell you what’s right or wrong? Does he send a lightening bolt or a smack on the head, or what? I’d really like to know. I might be able to use it too and save having to think. As an atheist I wold gladly accept a deity, if I could see a shred of evidence of one.
     -- Jack, Green, OH     
    I still say tolerance is a positive thing showing more strength than weakness or submissiveness.
     -- Jack, Green, OH     
    Life is a process of awakening. To be tolerant of each person's journey is to respect that which we do not understand. Of course, humility goes hand in hand with tolerance -- it is very hard to be tolerant when one believes he is right and everyone else is wrong and needs to be fixed.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
    I don't believe tolerance of others must necessarily be eager or glad, but allowing others to choose how they seek truth is required.
     -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
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