Why is sarcasm and ridicule so difficult for the human psyche? Children around the age of junior high schooling can be particularly vulnerable.They can develop a certain herd mentality where they find it very difficult to stand alone against their peers.
A mentally and emotionally strong person is not as easily swayed by ridicule. He/she knows that truth is what is important, not popular opinion. One needs to interpret the ridicule they receive and try to understand what is behind it. Someone may be making fun of me because they think I look or dress funny, they may be jealous of me, or they may not like my religious beliefs. So I should evaluate what my be instigating the ridicule.
If I am dressing sloppy, I could change. If my nose is too long, I know that a person should not be ridiculing me for what God has given me, and I accept their ridicule as immaturity on their part. If I am being ridiculed because of my belief in God, I accept that they are wrong in their thinking and I do not take their ridicule personally.
Whenever possible I remove the ridicule from myself personally. Instead I see it as the other person’s problem–a problem of immaturity or ignorance of the truth.
Why do we see so much ridicule in politics? I think that sometimes people do not understand what a candidate or politician stands for and joins others in ridiculing that person instead of determining what the politician stands for and deciding on that basis.
The bottom line is that the strongest people know what they believe and can tolerate ridicule. Proverbs 12:23: “A fool shows his annoyance at once, but a prudent man overlooks an insult.”
I have written a book, Sacred Strands, The Story of a Redeemer Woven through History, which you can access here. Watch next week’s blog for five fascinating things about the ancient Gilgamesh.