Richard Dawkins may be the most articulate nutjob of our generation <by the way … simply being a nutjob doesn’t mean you cannot be brilliantly smart>.
This is an awesome thoughtful non-nutjob quote.
I believe the entire discussion of close minded versus open minded is a great one.
I believe we all know that being close minded is not a good thing but the whole idea of being open minded as being a bad thing is a really enlightening thought.
Open or closed … once again, as with most things in life, it is about balance. To me it is about leaving enough open in your mind to absorb additional information and leaving enough opening to let out <throw out the useless garbage> the ‘unnecessary’ or maybe better said ‘the information that has now become obsolete’ as you gain new knowledge.
All at the same time keeping your mind closed enough that all that knowledge <your brains as Richard so aptly calls it> don’t fall out.
In other words … don’t lose your perspective just because you received some new, hopefully good, information and knowledge.
This whole topic brought to mind another relevant quote:
“We are not retreating – we are advancing in another Direction.” - General Douglas MacArthur
We all gather information.
Okay. Only <regretfully> some people do.
And we also tend to redirect, or advance in another direction, given what we have learned. Or maybe you don’t even have to redirect because you can stay on the same path but maybe slow down a little or speed up a little.
But not everyone does, or can, do this.
I tend to believe no one actually wants to be close minded … they possibly just find it more comfortable. I also tend to believe not everyone knows HOW to be open minded.
Well. Maybe not effectively open minded.
You can try and listen. And try and be open minded. But it all really comes down to WHAT you do with having been open minded.
I say that because maybe, me being an asshole <on occasion>, tend to want to say “so frickin’ what?” when someone says “I will be open minded.”
Who cares? Because people who actually have to say those words tend to be the least open minded people. Sorry folks … while that is a generalization I will take that bet every time <and become a rich man>. Yup. Trust me on this … the kiss of death in a business discussion is .. “okay, I will be open minded.” <translation: ‘you talk, I will pretend to listen, nod on occasion, and then we will do what I said we would do.”>
What really matters is the eventual action not the self proclamation.
In other words … what do you actually DO with the information you gained by being ‘open minded.’
- Did your brains spill out and you vapidly followed the new information ? <which shows a lack of fortitude with regard to the initial preferred point of view/opinion/direction>
- Did you simply nod and move on as if you didn’t hear a frickin’ think? <which shows lack of integrity/sincerity by claiming to be open minded and yet you didn’t>
Being open minded is a skill. A skill to absorb … and the skill to not always open so far your brains spill out.