The Evolution of Ideas, Part 5: Conclusion



In the opening of this piece, I described the way in which we perceive reality as a collection of often unconsciously accepted beliefs, upon which we flesh out a view of the world. I have, I hope, gone some way to show how I examine those beliefs I detect in myself as being fundamental to my perception of reality, and how I challenge them. It may very briefly serve to ask why we should do such a thing.


The world grows smaller by the day. The invention of the internet and of cheap and easy air travel has made distant lands and cultures instantly accessible, and consequently we have emerged as a species into a truly global age.


Slavishly adhering to one view of the world and committing oneself to it with fundamentalist fervour is a recipe for disaster – other reality tunnels are too close; if we take ourselves too seriously, we’ll spend all our time fighting for things that, upon deeper examination, we may reject without cause for concern.


This short essay does not claim to hold any answers. I am, emphatically, a layman. However, one thing of which I am sure is this: we need not examine our beliefs in depth, but the generations that follow us are bound to. The fewer incidents of slavery, stupidity and brutality we can leave them as a legacy, the kinder history will look upon us.


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