So I’m taking this super cool, totally liberal artsy class called: Science, Skepticism and Weird Behavior. We’re supposed to learn about aliens and the existence of a supreme being and get all introspective and what not. Today, we explored what it meant to be an open-minded person.
My professor wanted us to watch a video, this video specifically, but before we did, he wanted us to jot down our understanding of what constitutes open mindedness. Here was my definition: IMO being open minded means that you are open to the ideas, beliefs, thoughts, opinions, and lifestyles of others and give them a fair chance before opening your mouth or casting judgement.
I believe in aliens, I think astrology is groovy, sure, ghosts are fair game, why not believe in reincarnation?, I’ll eat anything that didn’t have a momma. I like to think of myself as an open-minded person…Well, I liked to think of myself as one. Until today.
Being open minded is essentially having the willingness to consider new ideas. While I thought I was open-minded because I believed in the existence of things like ghosts and aliens, I thought those who believed in God and Heaven were being perfectly ignorant and close-minded. How can you believe in God if you believe in Evolution? We have proof of Evolution, but you can’t prove that God was/is real. But here’s the thing. I can’t prove that ghosts or aliens are real, and I also can’t disprove that God or Heaven aren’t real. While there may not be any tangible evidence for me to put my hands on or wrap my head around as to the existence of God, it doesn’t make the person who believes he’s real, any less right. When you label an event as “supernatural” just because it doesn’t have any explanation that’s obvious to you, you eliminate any alternative explanations and make invalid causal connections.
By blaming the things I can’t explain on something like, aliens or karma, I’m claiming that I can explain them. Which is a contradiction. On the other hand, just because someone wants evidence before changing their opinions or views on an issue, doesn’t make them a close-minded person, it just makes them a curious one.
However, my belief in veganism isn’t a close-minded one. I have evidence that animals do in fact suffer so that we may eat them. People don’t have to accept this by way of faith or simply believe. We know that we regard animals as our slaves and to try to find a way to argue around that or turn the other cheek because it brings you down is the definition of close-minded, as well as ignorant.
While this post isn’t exactly about race, gender or the media, I wanted to admit that I am/was in fact a close-minded person even while chastising those who I believed were “close-minded” because they didn’t see things as I did. I hope this post will cause you to do a little soul searching and look at the areas in your life where you may be being close-minded and learn to accept others for their beliefs even if they don’t resonate with your own.