Are You Perfect? … August 27, 2013

Perspectives are generated by one’s own mental faculties. They are formed and come into being as a product of past observations and derivations based on even older observations and derivations. That is the way the brain works when encountering new objects or concepts, it compares to past observations and conclusions.

Mental faculties are shaped by one’s environment. This is inclusive of one’s parents, siblings, and surroundings. When ideas and concepts are imprinted upon an individual’s memory, especially from a very young age, these ideas and concepts are difficult to change.

When your parents are bigots, and racists, and homophobes, you are likely to grow up thinking such behavior is normal and correct. Evolution insured our survival by this means. A child naturally trusts and learns from his/her parents. If your parents are religious you grow up thinking this is the only way you can be as well. Once you are grown you will likely be just like your parents.

As some people reach an adult age they become enlightened to ideals which conflict with perspectives held since childhood. While the majority continue on, dismissing conflicts with tightly held ideals, some see the reasoning, the logic, of new concepts, new ways of thinking, and begin a difficult journey down the road of self-change.

Like some newborn creature they begin to walk down a new path. Like many newborns, missteps naturally occur. Old ways still prevail despite resistance causing some social  faux pas. Change is difficult in a brain wired in old ways. It is found that conscious thought must be maintained to prevent the emergence of communication based on old ways of thinking. Thinking before speaking, before voicing that question or that remark, becomes a necessary rule. Though with time this habit may become second nature, when first embarking on personal change, missteps must be expected.

There is another social faux pas, committed not by the person attempting to change, but by those around that person. Assumptions made about an individuals point in their journey, assuming that their thinking has reached the pinnacle of their goals, assuming that they have corrected all the errors programmed from youth, should not be made. Taking offense at some remark made by those undergoing change assumes two things. One, that the person making the remark has reached the final goal of personal change desired. The other, that your own point in your journey is your final goal, the perfect goal from which to measure the other person’s remark. The final goal, I should think, would include an admonishment that others may not have yet completed their journey and that some measure of tolerance is in order. Knee-jerk reactions and assumptions are not helpful in the creation of social harmony. Quiet discussion and airing of grievances teach a better lesson than hasty judgment. Education should be a life-long endeavor. If there should be even one assumption let it be that no one has reached their pinnacle, everyone must continue to learn, and strive to reach their ultimate goals despite the fact that by that assumption those goals are always just out of reach.

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