A Jewish joke goes thus - Moshe, an old Jewish man is reading an Arab newspaper on a New York subway.
His friend on the same commute approaches him: "Moshe, why on Earth are you reading an Arab newspaper?"
Moshe sighs and says: "You see Benyamin, I used to read Jewish papers. But everyday I read that Jews are hated, people don't want Israel to exist, our children are leaving the faith, everything is going downhill.
"And then I came across an Arab newspaper and it said that Jews have all the money, Jews control the world, Jews are very powerful, and I thought, hey, this is better to read!"
This comic illustration of confirmation bias exemplifies the tone and content of post-Brexit discussions in the UK.
Since no-one knows what will happen, the future not being a fact, everyone can read in the runes whatever they believed before they cast their vote.
Each side accuses the other of lying, manipulating facts, playing on fear, demagoguery, personal ambition, disregard for democracy and, most unfortunately, malevolence.
It is as if disagreeing is devilry - not only do I not agree with you, the fact that you disagree with me is proof that you must be driven by wickedness. I am driven by good intentions, you are driven by malice.
My choices are based on dispassionate analysis of facts, you are either stupid or evil to have made the opposite choice.
A cacophony of abuse drowns any sensible discussion on why this happened and what to do next.
For the past 16 years, I have run a home-based service for young people who are developing a serious mental illness.
We assess everyone at home where we provide all treatments - medicines, psychological interventions, social recovery and family therapy.
I must have visited over 2,000 families in this time.
Rich families in mansions with heated indoor pools and saunas, families living in utter squalor, single-parent families, large families where no-one has worked for three decades, families who live by the Sharia code, families whose sense of normality is completely shaken by the bewilderment of mental illness in a child, abusive families, broken families, loving families, cruel families, families trying their best, families indifferent to chaos within, white, black, Asian, east European, Far Eastern families and everything in between.
I have been with them through their struggles and pains. I have seen them at their most vulnerable, callous, hurt and hurting.
Among the many things I have learnt, the most surprising is how little different parts of Britain know or understand each other.
When I first arrived, Britain seemed strangely homogeneous in contrast to the dizzying diversity of India.
I now realise that there are thousands of version of Britain - islands within an island where people living a few miles apart might as well be inhabiting different social and political universes.
The biggest driver of this seemingly unbridgeable divide is our tendency to confirmation bias.
Left-leaning people read the Guardian and the Mirror; right-leaning ones the Daily Mail and Telegraph. Few are interested in understanding what the 'other side' thinks.
Both believe that Britain is run by self-obsessed elite who control the media, especially the BBC, and that honesty, concern for others and good intentions are only on their side.
And therein lies the difficulty in understanding that others may have chosen to vote differently for perfectly rational reasons, driven by the same human concerns that drive us.
Daniel Kahneman has described the phenomenon of 'what you see is all there is' (WYSIATI) in his book Thinking Fast and Slow.
It is our tendency, when presented with complex information, to jump to quick conclusions that confirm the coherence of our existing world view. It is a universal human tendency.
Deliberating slowly and carefully about a complex problem requires effort and accepting the possibility that our initial impressions, and even long-held and cherished views, may be wrong.
This is both intellectually and emotionally difficult. In psychological experiments, participants who see only one-sided evidence are more confident about their judgements than those who see both sides.
Certitude is preferable to careful and critical scrutiny. On any particular subject, the amount of information available to us individually is only a small part of all possible information about that subject.
We think and feel within ourselves very strongly that we are acting on the basis of facts. Actually, we act on the basis of only a limited amount of information. On most complex issues, most of us are relatively ignorant.
In February 1991, I was a trainee psychiatrist and worked for a time in Boston, a sleepy farming town. I was one of the few non-white people around, and certainly the only one wearing a turban.
I experienced, in decreasing order of frequency, polite indifference, friendliness, genuine curiosity and outright hostility.
An old newsagent who had served alongside Sikh soldiers in Colonial India made me most welcome.
He would regale me with daredevil tales of soldiers, their camaraderie and his open and complete admiration for the Sikhs. For a while, he was my best friend.
In 2016, Boston is the most segregated town in England, with the highest proportion of Leave voters.
It has seen a relatively large influx of eastern Europeans, 15 per cent of the total population in a brief period of time, leading to a profound sense of dislocation, change and loss among its native population.
When I was in Boston, most people I met were decent folk, who had not travelled widely, did not necessarily enjoy exotic food, loved their family, community and country.
They did not hate foreigners, they were simply more comfortable with their own kind. None of this made them lesser beings.
When English politicians mock the flying of the English flag in these communities, they reveal a deep disdain for those who do not share the value of the urban intelligentsia.
But these very 'multicultural' urban intellectuals would baulk at the idea of living in Boston.
They like diversity, but only of their kind. In their contempt for those who do not share their values, they reveal themselves to be as prejudiced as they accuse others of being.
It would be extremely unfortunate if the Brexit vote led to the unleashing of furies. The Remain side is hurting and is more vocal.
It portrays the leavers as small minded, xenophobic, thick, racist 'little Englanders'.
After each terrorist attack, we rightly remind ourselves that the perpetrator being a Muslim does not mean that all Muslims are terrorists.
By the same logic, why assume that everyone who voted Leave must have been driven by bigotry and racism? Newspapers are reporting a rise in racist attacks. This is extremely worrying.
But, even in this a sense, of balance and proportion would help. A 100 per cent rise in attacks may mean that attacks have increased from 50 to a 100 - the absolute number is still small.
Britain's population is 65 million. A single person can distribute a thousand racist leaflets. We can consider this a single racist incident or a thousand, depending upon what we want to convey.
Of course, we must take all necessary actions to prevent a rise in hatred. But we must be mindful that we do not add to a febrile atmosphere by hating those who voted to leave.
Personally, I do not believe that Britain has overnight become a fascist state. If this is a crisis, then frenzied embellishment of its negative aspects won't help.
If it is not a crisis, then talking of it as such won't help. Undoubtedly, some unsavoury elements within society will feel ennobled to articulate or act upon their latent prejudices.
This is true of the left as it is of the right.
JK Rowling recently tweeted a photograph of a left wing activist wearing a T-shirt that stated Eradicate the Right Wing Blairite Vermin, soon after Jo Cox's death.
Such sentiments demean us all. Hatred is not a problem of the right or the whites, it is a universal human affliction.
The extreme right is well known for it but the left also has its own 'other' to hate and despise, it is just blinded to its prejudices by its self-righteousness.
Britain, France, Germany and other western European countries are mature democracies. Despite the initial atavistic and primeval reactions to what is certainly a momentous decision, wiser counsel must and will prevail.
Some things might get better, others worse. We will find our economic, social, cultural and political balance and are unlikely to descend into major conflict, unless of course we can't or won't pull back from this state of emotional hyper-arousal.
This need not be a fresh wound in danger of getting infected and poisoning the body politic. We could treat it as the much-needed lancing of a boil, with toxins being released and the beginning of healing.
Mahatma Gandhi said that the future depended upon what we did in the present. The only way to shape the future is by acting sensibly in this tumultuous present.
Swaran Singh is a professor of mental health and wellbeing at the University of Warwick