Nice counterpoint to my post. You make valid points: stupid opinions are barely tolerable; some people *do* know more than others; that some opinions *are* more worthy than others. Perhaps I need to clarify...
It’s not that I accept barely intelligible opinions as being worthy—they aren’t. It’s more that I can live with the opinion-holder having the opinion without me feeling an overwhelming need to correct them / show them (or anyone else) where they are wrong. Then again, if I critique their beliefs I will address their (to me) erroneous beliefs and not them personally.
That being said, life experience has forced me to temper my perception of other’s opinions when I know it’s true that not long ago I firmly held to—for many years—quite a few ideas that I now totally reject. If I was so wrong for so long about so many things in the past, the same error in judgment that I know exists in me could again be in effect right now or may be at some future time. With each opinion I presently hold (regardless of how strongly I hold it) I leave myself a way out. When I was a Dub I was thoroughly convinced of so many things. That list of things about which I am convinced as categorically true is comparatively short, nowadays.
I’m also much less concerned that others agree with me or that I must convince them to accept my viewpoint. If a person, say, a JW, believes something that I’m fairly convinced is absurd, I am completely willing to allow them to remain (to me) deluded. That is especially the case if they are the only ones who will suffer for their endorsement of the untruth.
This is never truer than when the topic of religion is breached. Imo, there is no other single topic currently being discussed anywhere in the world wherein so many millions are so ‘out there.’ I see it as the mis-firing of a less than fully functioning mind, beginning with the idea that there is a Loving God dutifully observing humans; that 2000 yrs ago He sent his Firstborn Son to Earth to redeem us; that prayers work; that one day He will come and fix all our problems and we’ll live out eternity in Paradise/Heaven. Tweaking these and other basic tenets to fit one’s culture, race, nationality and life experience leads to a vast assortment of wild, unprovable and unproven ideas.
Oh, I don’t mind engaging believers in a discussion, but I now have a much greater tolerance for people’s freedom to believe whatever absurdities they wish. I no longer see it as My Job to persuade a world of people (or the few I meet) that they must all see things through teejay’s still-cloudy prism. If someone wants to believe something stupid, that’s cool with me. Like JT used to say (paraphrasing), “I’ve done had my last argument about did Jesus die on a cross or stake.” Been there already and stayed way too long when I was.
Btw, sorry for reviving bad memories by my use of “abhor.” I’m not too fond of the word my own damn self. I shoulda said “really, really, really hate.” If there is a concept that I would take out and shoot in the head fifteen times, it’s one that consumed me personally for many years—the truly ugly idea that I’m right, you’re wrong, and if you disagree with me you’re really a worthless piece of dog doo doo so why don’t you just do us all a favor and kill yourself now before The Great Jehovah God Almighty does it for us REAL SOON™ because He agrees w/ me, not you.
Nice note, Six. Thank you.