The significant element of common good is respect. Talking with Trees[1] simplifies this concept for children as “1) How you feel about someone and 2) how you treat her/him.” This is basic for ensuring the common good. It is difficult to improve on this. Unless respect is a priority in life, it will interfere with creating an atmosphere of common good. This does not mean that you have to agree with everyone. You simply have to acknowledge that opinions, beliefs, and ideas are as numerous as individuals. You need not respect the idea, but you must respect the person’s right to have their ideas. Ultimately, ignoring their reality will achieve nothing.

Your challenge is to gain empathy, which will change how you feel about someone. When you change how you feel about someone, you will treat him or her differently. You cannot achieve the common good without this concept of respect.

[1] http://talkingtreebooks.com/what_is_respect.html