"An Open Mind"

To: nominal@topica.com
Subject: an open mind
From: David McDivitt <dmcdivitt@yahoo.com>
Date: Sun, 17 Mar 2002 14:50:51 -0600

What does it mean to have an open mind? Seems the best way is to have an open platform for reasoning. If there is only one set of "things which exist", and people debate definitions, it would seem closed mindedness is inevitable. This is because the initial premise is closed. Though people have differing opinions, they agree they are arguing over a singular existence, and the question is who actually describes that existence. So why the power plays? Why the attempts by one to impose opinions on another? If reality is reality, how can authoritarianism and imposition make any difference in that regard? Well, this is because authoritarianism and imposition change reality, and reality is not fixed. Pick any area of knowledge. In what way has authoritarianism affected it historically? In what way does social protocol, a type of authority, affect it today? Reality is the result of a complex dynamic involving many factors.

Taking all the knowledge we have today, and seeing changes, at what point can we rest and say existence is adequately described? Never? Why then continue with the initial premise there is only one set of "things which exist"? How is that premise proved or validated? Continuing that premise, though never realized, generates many dualisms and impediments to greater intellectualism.

It is hard to have an open mind when one feels reality is being properly delineated and spoken. Much of it goes back to religion, in my opinion. God and spiritual forces were seen to have authority, and culturally we are still predisposed to think in terms of authority. This is born out by knowledge systems we set up which revolve around some authoritative holy core. The only official and ordained cosmological theory we have follows the same pattern and is known as the Big Bang, where all matter and energy emanate from a single point, and everything that exists can be followed back deterministically to a single event. How convenient. One might as well say God.

How can a person feel something is known for a certainty, but still question it at the same time? By continuing the idea there is only one set of "things which exist", people are forced to entreat this dualism. Resolving the dilemma merely involves throwing out the unsupportable premise. Our world has meaning because intellectualism has evolved under the guidance of pragmatism, and not because we have ever come to properly explain any set of "things which exist".

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