Hell…think about what you’re thinking!
I was just browsing Instagram and found the following:
“The moment you doubt whether you can
fly, you cease forever to be able to do it.”
I see this kind of New Agey stuff frequently. It’s indicative of the lack of attention we give to the things we post and the messages we send. I’m sure that the woman who posted it saw the aphorism someplace and thought “Oh, inspiring,” then posted it without further thought.
But what is the underlying message? If you get discouraged, quit; it isn’t going to happen. If we applied that philosophy to life most of us addicts would be dead now (or wish we were) and very little would get accomplished in general.
We–all of us–need to be mindful of the messages that we send to others by our posts, the things we say, and the ways we behave, even when we’re just fooling around. I don’t mean we shouldn’t share things we find inspirational, nor have bumper stickers that reflect our real feelings, nor goof on stuff and have a little fun, but merely that we should look deeply at why these things appeal to us and consider what impressions, perhaps even impact, they might have on others.
I don’t believe the example above is going to destroy anyone’s life, but it doesn’t say a lot about the deep thinking of whoever originated the phrase and it’s a perfect example of the stuff we see on the Web. We’re inundated with posts that the perpetrator failed to think about or check out before laying them on people who might not bother to either. Like sheep, they re-post and thus pass on the deception or misunderstanding to others. Much of the damage done by this sort of thoughtless posting and reposting is directly reflected by the dissonance of our current national discourse. Facebook isn’t responsible for our unwillingness to think critically; we are.
We human beings believe what makes us comfortable and rarely bother to check out things that seem to agree with what we think we know. Unfortunately, that makes us easy to lead around by our feelings instead of our intellects. We need to be mindful of the difference between opinions and facts.
As JFK memorably said:
“Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion
without the discomfort of thought.”