For the longest time, humans have been trying to come up with simple phrases to accurately encapsulate what life actually is. In other words, something like “Life is.....
My contribution to this quest is to suggest that life - and how we develop as human beings - comes down impressions and responses. And for better or for worse, life seems destined to revolve around opinions, rather than facts.
We all have opinions, formed in the wake of our responses to what we experience and what we choose to believe in along the way. That’s just the way we roll. I don’t think we set out to embrace particular beliefs, opinions or ethea - it just kind of happens to us as we grow up, depending on which impressions we find agreeable in our particular situations at any given time. And for most of us, those beliefs and opinions are constantly evolving - consciously and subconsciously.
Politically I lean toward the left; although when I was growing up in Australia - in fact until I was about 30 - I was right wing/conservative, as were my parents. What I find curious is that most of my American friends (whom I consider to be good, intelligent people) are basically Republicans rather than Democrats. One or two are Donald Trump supporters. Given my utter (and - to me - overwhelmingly logical) distaste for Trump, this would seem incongruous. But what I’ve learned is that everyone has their own impression and response process... and this is why some won’t always subscribe to the same “logic” as others.
Acceptance of this means we can successfully agree to disagree on whether Trump is a complete and utter dickhead etc., but still get on very well. I personally have no interest in organised religion, either. But that doesn’t mean I can’t get along with people who do.
It’s a bit like musical taste. We’re all wired differently and whilst we might share common ground with our friends on most artists/bands/genres/composers etc., there will occasionally be "aberrations" which to the other person will seem utterly inexplicable.
“PERSONAL TRUTHS” VS. FACTS
Someone once told me at a gig that a particular artist’s music was “shit”, as a statement of fact. Of course, it isn’t fact - it’s opinion - and I think more people need to start seeing the difference. Others will hang doggedly on to a blind hatred for something they know nothing about and have had no experience with, with the excuse that it’s their democratic right to do so. Go figure.
There are, of course, limits to accepting “personal truths”. I for one will NEVER tolerate the apologetics/point of view of
nazis, racists, bullies, child abusers, holocaust deniers, hate mongers or men who beat women. Nope. Not ever.
Anyway - it seems that there’s a lot to be said for trying to keeping an open and flexible mind, whilst keeping an eye on the facts at hand. It’s not always easy, but as they say - the brain is a muscle. If you don’t use it, you lose it.