Thinking and talking.
This sounds so simple.
But it is actually a little more complicated than it appears.
There is often a significant difference what you think <and saying it> and thinking about what you think <and actually saying it>.
Let’s maybe call this uninformed opinions versus informed opinions.
Let’s maybe call it lazy or shallow thinking versus invested thinking … or enlightened thinking.
This may sound crazy coming from a guy who has consistently been a proponent of thinking … any thinking … as a good thing. And a sign of progress and improvement for an individual’s mind <from which we all benefit>.
Maybe I have realized that not all opinions are created equal.
This is dangerous ground. Very dangerous ground. For what makes someone’s opinion greater than some else’s? <assuming they are both opinions>. More reflectively … what makes my opinion more valuable than yours?
I don’t think mine are … but … boy … do I love a good debate and discussion over opinions.
It’s the thinking.
Not critical thinking or adeptness at thinking <although they help> but rather the depth of the thinking.
And this gets to be REALLY dangerous ground.
Because I can guarantee you that a shallow thinker … or one who has pegged their opinion upon one , what they see to be, unequivocal fact or truth … believes they have depth behind their opinion.
Because what can be deeper than truth?
Oh. Let me be clear.
Truth is truth. Neither shallow nor deep. Even in it’s ‘wafer thin being’ it is stronger than anything else in the world. Stronger than the strongest metal in the world. Stronger than any lie <no matter how crafty that lie can be>.
However. Truths are truly hard to find.
And herein lies the trouble in dealing with a shallow thinker.
They confuse truth with what they are actually using to support their opinion.
Often they will torture numbers to make them tell the story they want to tell and extract splinters from houses of information to challenge the entire foundation.
Deep thinkers understand that truth is more often found in a compilation of learnings and the consolidation of facts.
A strong opinion is supported really only by one of two things:
- A solid foundation of a variety of learnings
Let’s assume the majority of us just aren’t smart enough to recognize real truths even if they hit us in the face. Therefore we are required to actually do some thinking … and some real enlightening type work & research to truly offer a ‘deep’ opinion.
I say this in combination with the quote because I believe far too often we offer flippant opinions.
We may not truly be lazy but we may not be working hard enough before we speak.
And I have written before … words can be weapons. But what may be worse … shallow opinions tend to have really sharp jagged edges that can tear apart even the best thoughts.
I say that because have you ever noticed how the really smartest people … those who have actually thought about their opinions … tend to keep them to themselves? I think it’s because they know that often they cannot protect their thoughts from the shallow sharp edged opinions they will inevitably be attacked with.
Shallow opinions are really really hard to defend against.
Reason seldom works <which is REALLY aggravating>.
If you really haven’t thought about what you think … don’t speak. The odds are your opinion isn’t equal to someone who has actually thought about what they think.
Don’t say anything.
Just think about it.