There was a time I thought that I was weak for not forming opinions..well not not forming opinions, but not forming these die-hard, immovable, stringent points of view on random matters that the world concerned themselves with. What kind of person doesn’t care to declare or refute a God, doesn’t pay much attention to defending or criticizing eating meat, and simply doesn’t have the mental energy to debate abortion, feminism, racism, classism…make that all the “isms”.
The greatest deception men suffer is from their own opinions – Leonardo da Vinci
Especially during my time at University, with all this “intellectual thought” floating around I felt overwhelmingly inadequate for the sole reason that I didn’t feel this burning desire to participate in discussions I felt I had no expertise in, nor did I have the need to prove my point of view. Left, right and center, my classmates were catching a case of enlightenment, and all too suddenly forming “positions” and “perspectives” about things. Even more alarming to me was the unfortunate side-effect of this head-cold (see what I did there?): an overwhelming obligation of those infected to voice said opinions. My remedy? *walks away slowly*
To tell you the truth, what opinions I did have, I didn’t feel needed proving to anyone, or more so, I didn’t feel that my thoughts needed anyone else’s acceptance or veto. And of course with that mind set came a stream of comments about not having a “backbone”, not being properly informed about whatever topic was being debated at the time, and the all too well known “living in ignorance” statements from my peers.
Regardless of all this however my demeanor didn’t change. It’s not so much that I didn’t have opinions, but rather that I preferred to not take myself so seriously as to think that the people around me had no choice but to listen to them. Opinions change like everyone else and while according to some I took the “coward’s way out” by not shouting them to the hills, I just think maybe people ought to give themselves a break and not feel obligated to form immovable stances on issues. There are many different sides to any debate, and I don’t feel the need to fall in any one category. Actually most days I don’t even feel to fall in any category. I just think that maybe we should look to prove less, and do more.
If you believe something then show the world by living consistently with your belief rather than just aiming to win an argument. For me, it’s as simple as that. We can convince ourselves of any opinion or stance, if we but say it enough times.
According to my Granny, Practice doesn’t make Perfect. Practice makes Permanent…
The spoken debate is over and won, the mission to prove that our lives and actions are in line with our words has just begun. Will the story of our lives shine as brightly or sound as eloquently as those opinions that we so dearly cling to?
In my opinion that’s where the real quandary lies.