“The Shape of Mercy” part 2

Another interesting thing I read in this book was when Lauren finally realized that no matter who you are, you think you know what other people think and feel. You think that your experiences are the same as what others experience. For Lauren, she was from a wealthy, privileged family. She was trying to fit in with those “less privileged” people around her. She wanted to make something of herself on her own. But when she interacted with those around her, she worked off of her presuppositions about how she thought people felt and acted.

I realized that I do this. I believe people who are nothing like me, who have lived much harder lives, who have had totally different experiences… I believe what I want to believe about them. I believe I know exactly what they are thinking, why they are doing what they do… But really, I don’t know that. How could I? How could I know what they have been through and how those experiences have affected their lives. So, the book has challenged me to not jump to my own conclusions, but to step back and not assume I know why people are they way they are.

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