On Insensitivity

He is a good-looking, friendly guy who easily banters with sports stars–on camera. In real life, evidently another guy. A series of remarks insensitive toward other human beings have caused the CEO/face of the company to become the former CEO/face of the company.

Some people are born with the inability to be sensitive to others.

The rest of us seem to develop it. I’ve known people who seem to work on insensitivity as in sharpening a skill. Some sort of reinforcement loop of insensitivity.

John Climacus ranks insensitivity just below avarice as an “infirmity”.

Insensitivity is deadened feeling in the body and spirit, and comes from long sickness and carelessness. Lack of awareness is negligence that has become a habit.

Think of the difference between Jesus and the Pharisees.

For Pharisees, the kind at the time of Jesus and the modern kind, everything is what I call “theory.” I have a set of rules or ideas that I live by (sort of) and wish to impose on others. I don’t care, if I were a Pharisee, about the individual person. I might even despise people in general. They live in their heads and don’t care about (are insensitive to) how others feel.

Jesus looked into the heart of everyone he met. He may have used general descriptions at times. But he related to each person as an individual and sought their heart.

If we are truly trying to follow Jesus, then we are striving to be aware of the feelings, desires, needs of each individual. We develop sensitivity in body and spirit. How will God talk to us if we are insensitive to his whispering?

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