Saturday, February 17, 2018

Open Space: Question everything

August 10, 2016 by Jayden Grieve, contributing writer

For the sake of oneself and for the sake of society at large, it’s becoming increasingly important that we question the rationale behind everything we do.

The human brain acts as a composite of all the information it has taken in, and a great deal of that information is completely subconscious. Why do we prefer certain colours? Why do some words sound silly to us? Things like this are completely harmless, but rarely can a person explain why they have these preferences.

Consider a puddle of your cat’s vomit—you have possibly already cringed. When your furry feline friend deposits a nice helping of yesterday’s kibble onto your floor, it’s an unpleasant job to clean it up.

This story originally appeared in our August 10, 2016 issue.

This story originally appeared in our August 10, 2016 issue.

Why? The contents of your friend’s stomach are really not likely to harm you in any way. Cat vomit doesn’t even smell particularly bad. You think that it is gross because you have been told that mushy things that come out of stomachs are gross. If you can truly look at your brain and say, “Why do you think this is gross?” you may realize that, deep down, there is no reason, and that’s the first step to cleaning up vomit without cringing.

Now, some people may have a perfectly valid reason to hate cat vomit, but it’s important to question whether you have a reason.

And if anyone doubts their ability to overcome, ask someone how they’d react to having feces on them before they have a baby, and then ask them again after they’ve had a baby for a couple months.

When people are able to question the small, they are much more likely to be able to question the big: “Why do I buy certain products?” “Why do I treat women this way?” “Why do I hate certain people?”

Racism, sexism, and other prejudices are born from swallowing—consciously or subconsciously—the hatred spat from other people who themselves are likely unsure of the motives behind their bigotry.

Doing something because it’s what you’ve always done is simply unacceptable.

You have to know why you are doing it.

Knowing yourself is the first step toward bettering yourself, and if we are able to take a glance into our inner clockwork, we may be able to set ourselves on the path to becoming better people, and a better society at large.

Question everything, friends.

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