Lurking Sacred Cows
Have you an open mind? Invariably the answer to this query is “of course.” Often
however it is not the case. To have an open mind requires work and diligence. On
any issue which interests us we must spend time studying all aspects dispassionately,
to the point where we could intelligently discuss all aspects, not just the
parts we agree with. If we choose not to do this our point of view is skewed,
for it lacks any systematic or logical course of study, becoming emotion based
versus fact based. To wit:
In the 1970’s I was a member of the Futurist Society. Futurists make predictions based on what is deemed the best verifiable evidence extrapolated logically. I accepted their pronouncements at face value (blind trust), since they had studied and researched the issues (I believed at the time) systematically at depth. I looked forward to the arrival of each issue for one particular writer whose articles were always well written and interesting. The new issue arrived, and I attempted to read some of the other articles first, a little delayed gratification, but soon turned to my favorite author. With a smile on my face I began reading. When finished I felt unsettled. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but something was lurking in the back of my mind. So after about a week of ruminating I went to the library to do some research. Firing up the microfiche (remember microfiche and cabinets filled with microfilm) I located the statistics I was looking for and there was the problem. The author had reversed the stats that supported his position! I felt relieved and a little proud. I reasoned that some underling had provided the stats to the author incorrectly and a correction would be forth coming. The next issue arrived however, and nothing was mentioned. I surmised that by the time he became aware it was too late for this issue but would certainly be in the next. Well, he did address it in the next issue. The response was one of the most over the top, vitriolic pieces of junk I, to this day, have ever read. Not only did he defend his position and facts, anyone who disagreed with him was an idiot! I was left stunned and breathless. I rechecked the stats to see if I misread them. Nope. A sacred cow died that day.
Spiritually, sacred cows are everywhere. Many are inherited, some have quietly strolled in and we have not bothered to do the work to turn them out, usually because if we do we are afraid of what we will find when they are gone, for like all cows, sacred cows are notoriously poor house keepers. Living on the Spiritual Basis we must not be afraid to ask questions and seek the truth, since: the truth will set you free. Trust, but verify.
I didn’t renew my membership in the Futurists Society. Beware sacred cows.
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