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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

-The Right- Tenet 4

4. "Don't put too much stock into what people say, experience is the best teacher.”

    It's not to say there is no value to anyone's perspective than your own, in fact I am a huge supporter of “The Sciences” and all other forms of credible, transmitted wisdom. However the human capacity for language allows us to form an uncountable number of  thoughts, and express them as statements. For the most part aside from the wildly semantically indecipherable, we've all had this experience, the inability to express a thought with a satisfying level of clarity. Statements can also be context sensitive, or worst yet, completely subjective. Opinions are valid, but oftentimes only within the mind of their bearer, when called upon to justify them; it's likely we cannot at all. What passes for “wisdom", varies from one culture to the next, indeed from one -person- to the next.

    This must be accounted for.

    Instead, feel free to take the experience of others, along with their opinions, but always try to take into account how they relate to your current situation. Some of our greatest failing as a species, come from refusing to consider context while pouring over a piece of information we happen to revere. Although it should be a given, context is key, within the context of a statement lies all of its power... without its context statements are, often, quickly rendered meaningless... One should always consider the context with which a particular nugget of wisdom was formed.

    Take the experience of others; experience is just that, experience, so long as the source and information are reliable. Although people often take their opinions, dogmas, prejudices -way- too seriously, a tidbit of helpful information may be hidden within the semantic mire of any particular statement. But; always keep in mind what is best for you, those you concern yourself with, and the situation at hand. Many people will tell you to do something blindly, as divine providence, on their authority alone, or simply because they “say so”; without so much as a reason or explanation.

    The simple fact of the matter, is that human beings are opinionated... any living, thinking creature; with limited access to objective truth is... it's a simple fact of the matter. Our survival has always depended on taking the quickest route to an effective solution; and without the ability to see the whole picture, a good estimation is... good enough. This often causes people to offer help that helps them more than the person who's actually asking for the help; people almost always help themselves given the option, it's simply instinct. Obviously, if someone manages to offer a  bit of tested wisdom, and explain to you why they believe as they do; take that, learn from it, if it passes your own personal litmus test.

    However, if you take some “wisdom” into yourself, on blind faith or outside authority alone; you had best trust it's source an awful damn lot, or be prepared to be screwed, and face the consequences of your misplaced trust. Unfortunately, it's the way things are; the nature of our limited wisdom makes it so; and it happens a lot more than people realize. Both intentionally, or unintentionally; people seem to believe a lot of things they've likewise been taught, or told to believe, unconditionally.

    In the end, Dogma, Opinion, Bullshit, Superstition; they are worth no more than you allow them to be worth. Let your minds determine what is best for you; with a little bit of help from your heart, the things you know, and have come to see as true.

1 comment:

  1. If one does not learn from the wisdom of the elder, the community has no value. Without the ability to transport your situation out of its reality and into the altered state of the parable being given, you show little potential to learn from your past and the great returning sin of repeating mistakes. This is not how you 'forge forward'.