A while back, I promoted a discussion on the logic of logic and since that time have not been very present. I'd now like to return to ATS Philosophy
and bring about a new topic of badinage: opinions and facts.
My post contains two distinct sections; firstly, why do we allow a differentation between fact and opinion and secondly, how would a world 'really' be
if we did indeed all think the same? I wish to share a few 'opinions' (oh, the irony).
We develop 'opinions' as we grow up and experience the world. Over time, we gain more knowledge and respond accordingly to our environment. Such
factors have an effect on what we like and don't like in our lives and are the cause for a great many conflicts between us as humans.
In addition, we are usually directed by authority (parents/government/teachers/books) to accept and/or live by a particular opinion of others and any
challenge of this opinion does not pass without punishment. Sometimes, we develop opinions without even knowing it; in other words, we subconsciously
like or dislike something but would find it difficult to explain how such a feeling came about in our lives.
We are equally aware of 'facts' and have grown to stick to a particular fact like a supermagnet, unable to budge from its absoluteness in our lives.
Unfortunately, however, one person's fact can sometimes be another person's opinion and herein lies, in my opinion*, the root of an incredibly large
amount of negativity, distress and conflict in our lives.
(*my point being that my opinion is a fact for all, not only myself, but I hope to elaborate further before anyone comments on this one singular
Facts are also updated (that is a fact; look at history books and the development of basic scientific principles) which in itself is goes quite far in
supporting the general theme of my post. Adhering to pretty much any piece of potentially changeable/updatable piece of information comes with quite
a large percentage of uncertainty and insecurity. One example of this could be air travel. Aircraft have become progressively safer in many ways
following various accidents and incidents because what was believed to be 'factually sound' turned out to be quite the opposite (such as window
I find it discouraging that so many genuinely intelligent and/or knowledgeable people (being acutely aware that intelligence and knowledge are not the
same thing at all) make the basic human error of living their lives adhering to 'facts' which usually have the potential of changing, as well as
forming opinions which they know are not necessarily factual for all, but live as if they are. An example would be your 'favourite' something. I
like the BMW 3 series; I like it's shape, quite simply. Others enjoy hiking in mountains or laying on a tropical beach. Why can't everyone like
those things because, inherently, they are factually stimulating to any human brain (Vitamin D from the sun is good in moderation, mountain air is
very good for the lungs, etc), whether or not the consciousness of the person likes it or not!
I know a lot of readers will be saying "So you want us to like what you like". Don't be ridiculous; I want to like what you like, too! My opinion,
for example, of watching F1 racing, is that it is incredibly, mind-numbingly boring. But, I would be more than happy to learn about the 'facts' of F1
so that, in spite of my opinion, the fact of the matter is that I should indeed like it, whether I like it or not! I used to dislike snooker until I
played it, understood the difficulties and now I enjoy it greatly on TV and do not find it boring; watching players study angles and cue ball control
is fascinatingly interesting to watch, as it should be for all, because the 'fact' of the matter is that cue ball control and placement is a difficult
thing to master, as are angles, and this fact alone requires respect.
I don't think it would be so bad to live in a world where the saying "It would be boring if we all liked the same thing" existed. We only adhere to
this sentence because we don't want to be open to other 'facts' and experience new things which, factually, are indeed very
Perhaps if everybody liked everything, in moderation, we would actually have developed further as a race/species and not have so many conflicts.
This concept can be applied to:
- religion (don't only read the bible, read 5 other religious books, too)
- sports (don't only play rugby, study tennis as well)
- drink (don't say all red wine tastes like vinegar, understand the grape/climate/procedure and acknowledge a difference)
- living (don't like busy cities? don't ignore that you would meet more people, discover more things and have more opportunities to develop your life
whereas in the country you will not as much)
- music (don't like jazz? study it's background, listen to Bill Evans, don't deny that improvisation is a difficult art to master)
Again, this is not about "like what I like, or you're wrong", it's about everybody, myself included, considering that their 'opinions' may well be
wrong or unfounded and that by opening up one's mind and not being so mentally rigid, more facts can be discovered and opinions can be a little
What a wonderful world it would be if everyone liked the same things.
edit on 31-5-2013 by DB340 because: (no reason given)