Thursday, September 03, 2015

Shells




Every human being is linked to every other human being by DNA and a myriad of complex commonalities  that define us as human. Yet, ultimately, despite all of these links, each of us is on our own when it comes to dealing with the intimidating complexities of life surrounding us. In that regard, each of us is not unlike a single Hermit crab on a vast beach, seeking some a “just ours” shelter into which we can retreat for comfort and security. 

My own little protective shell is composed, not of calcium carbonate as are most seashells, but of logic. Logic is the tether that anchors my view of the world and, in fact, my sanity. 

However, as strongly as I rely on logic to protect me, far too much of my life is spent in frustration which at times verges on being debilitating. It is difficult to cling to one's beliefs and Illogic, clearly demonstrating that logic is utterly worthless when dealing with the real world. I simply cannot comprehend how things which are, to me, so quintessentially logical, are so easily ignored or dismissed out of hand by what seems at times to be the majority of my fellow human beings. The current state of our political system is perhaps the strongest single example of how little power logic has in our world. I firmly believe that those people in and out of Congress who swear allegiance to the Tea Party are far more closely aligned to Lewis Carol than to Boston.

To me, logic is the mind's salvation, just as hope is the soul's. However, to be continually shown irrefutable evidence that what is so vital to me is held in such disregard--and viewed with such disdain and contempt by so many--is truly disheartening. I simply, sincerely cannot understand how otherwise rational, intelligent people can be so totally unconcerned by not only the neglect of logic but its downright rejection. How can the most egregiously illogical precepts/ideas/theories be foisted upon us as gospel and, incomprehensibly, almost universally accepted without question?

It is when I find myself personally abandoned by logic that I am most exposed and vulnerable, and this happens most often when it comes to issues of consistency. Consistency is logical. If I do something in a certain way 99 times and get the same results all 99 times, should I not be able to safely assume that doing the same thing exactly the same way as I've done it 99 times before will produce the same result? Alas, the answer is no. I can never be sure that doing the same thing the same way will produce the same results as the last time I did it.

I've always found my reliance on logic at odds with my refusal to accept reality. Logic is, after all, the ultimate reality. But like most humans, I am quite good at making my own accommodations between the two.

I'm fully aware that my sincere belief in the basic goodness of our species flies in the face of both logic and reality, and marks me as incredibly naive. But it is because I so sincerely believe in the goodness and honesty of others that every single instance of outrageous, blatant dishonesty upsets me so. I walk around like an exposed nerve end.

I simply cannot understand how people cannot be more kind to one another, or more considerate, or how or at what point the Golden Rule metastasized from, "Do unto others as you would have done unto you," to "Do unto others as you would have done unto them."

And yet, in spite of it all, I still find comfort and safety within my increasingly thin little shell of logic, and try to ignore the storms that rage outside.

Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home.

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3 comments:

Kage Alan said...

Politics, like most films, require a strong suspension of disbelief. I wonder sometimes if that in itself is a shell since we absorb, and accept or reject that which is determined to come in.

Just a thought.

Puzz TM said...

"logic is the mind's salvation, just as hope is the soul's"
I was reading this statement and part of my mind was willing to accept it as consistent truth, but the other part raised a warning flag and challenged my fact oriented engineering thinking: "it doesn't feel quite right".
For Logic is nothing but a tool. It helps keeping oneself in control, composed, poised and confident, but one could use this tool to do good or evil upon their choosing.
On one hand it made me smile, maybe that's the reason I like so much solving puzzles, but on the other hand Logic would have had me killed several times in my life. I believe it was Hope that kept me alive, and knowing that my actions were honest and feeling that I was doing the right thing, it pushed me to do things that didn't seem achievable at the time... Hope and desire to have good things happening to me and to people around me.

Individual's effort to develop values keeps a mind balanced and positive. A consistent investment in developing individuals' values through the educational systems could help mankind improve its mental health.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

Dorien Grey said...

Very interesting and valid points, Puzz...thanks for taking the time to share them!