It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. — Aristotle.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who has noticed that the freedom movement is quickly becoming just as polarized and divided as the mainstream political circles that are presented in the media. While it is absolutely important that we stay true to our individual principles, that doesn’t mean that it is productive for us to immediately disregard anyone who doesn’t see the world exactly as we see it. Likewise, this especially does not give us the right to belittle or ridicule those who have different ideas than we do.
The truth is that we all have blind spots in our thinking, and we all have things to learn from other people. It is possible to have a friendly conversation with someone who sees the world completely different from you, without sacrificing your beliefs and without expecting them to sacrifice theirs.
That’s not to say that there are no right or wrong answers, because in many cases there are things which can be verified and proven, but standing on opposing ends of an issue and shoving ideas down one another’s throats as fast as possible is how the republicrats communicate, it is not how we should be communicating in the freedom movement.
For those of us standing outside of the left/right political paradigm we can see the stagnation and inefficiency that is caused by this sort of divisive approach at communication and problem solving. Debates in political circles are always centered more around scoring points and showing off, instead of being focused on actually solving the problems at hand, which is one of the many reasons why there are never any real “political” solutions to any of the world’s problems.
With that being said there is a growing number of people throughout the world who are really becoming disgusted with the violence and subjugation that has become commonplace in all of our societies. These people all come from very different backgrounds, they have led different lives, had different experiences and each have taken in a wide variety of contrasting information about the world that we live in. Due to that fact all of these people have entered the freedom movement, or the resistance, or the revolution, or whatever you want to call it . . . all of these people have entered this movement with different preconceived notions about why we are in the mess we are in and how to get out.
This may seem like a dangerous and volatile situation because we are so used to seeing people who think differently tear each other apart, but in reality this is a beautiful gift that we should all embrace and attempt to learn from as much as we possibly can.
If we think of the global situation as a giant puzzle, we can describe all of these different people with different viewpoints as each being a unique piece in that puzzle that is essential for its completion.
Some us may be voluntarists or libertarians, some of us may be constitutionalists and Ron Paul supporters, some of us may be socialists or futurists, and we may all disagree on a whole lot of things, but the bottom line is that we all have a great deal to learn from one another and there is no way we are going to fight the mercantilist monster that stands before us if we don’t respect one another’s opinions and we refuse to entertain the possibility that someone with a different opinion has the potential to teach us something.
As free thinkers we should celebrate the moment that we learn new information, even if that information may cause us to change our minds and feel differently about certain things. In fact, I would say that the ability to overcome one’s own ego and change their minds when presented with new information is one of the fundamental characteristics of a “free thinker”. Now, again, I want to be clear that this doesn’t mean that you have to go around agreeing with what everyone says, or that you can’t be firm in your convictions, but it is just important to remember that we are in this fight to solve problems and reduce the level of violence that we see around us; we are not here to score debate points and form cliques.
Today, almost every economy in the world is totally dictated by the ideas of two long-dead aristocrats. Karl Marx on one end representing communism, and Adam Smith on the other end representing capitalism. Our whole way of doing business on this planet has changed very little since the time that these two characters were alive, and that right there is the root of our problem.
Imagine if a few people in every city across the world wrote their own economic manifestos and got together to respectfully discuss their ideas. We refuse to accept yesterday’s television shows, iPods and PlayStations, but without thinking we have accepted ways of living that are centuries old. It’s time for us to work together to create strategies where everyone can meet their needs without violating the rights of others.
This article originally appeared at Alchemy of the Modern Renaissance
J.G. Vibes is an author, and artist — with an established record label. In addition to featuring a wide variety of activist information, his company Good Vibes Promotions hosts politically charged electronic dance music events. You can keep up with him and his new book Alchemy of the Modern Renaissance, at his website www.aotmr.com.