I came across an interesting article the other day about five things that children say often and we, as adults, don’t say often enough. They are: “I love you”, “You’re the best”, “Will you play with me”, “Why”, “I want to help you”, and “Are we done yet.” While all five are very important, tonight I want focus on just one. That word is “Why”.
As children, we use the word “why” relentlessly. We drive everyone around us nuts with the constant use of the word “why.” But then something very sad begins to happen. Over time we begin to lose our wonder of the world. We stop challenging and fall into a basic routine–a routine that we don’t question (or at least the majority of us don’t)–a routine we follow right into our graves.
So tonight, we are going to talk about the question. Yes, that’s right; we are going to talk about not stopping the use of the word “why”, but expanding it. We need to begin testing everything, including our beliefs, both inner and outer–our likes, prejudices, habits, customs and even the thought processes that make up who we are.
Let’s start with our routines. We all have them. We drive to work using the same route, have lunch (typically) at the same place and usually with the same people. We come home, sit down in front of the television and watch the same inane sitcom we’ve been watching forever. At this point we have few remaining brain waves that dare to slither across our mind’s blurry screen. Look at this scenario like this; when we proceed through life in one way, you can safely say you have experienced life. Now, if we repeat that same routine on the second day, you have really only lived life one day – the first. There are millions of people who live their lives this way. So, what do you do to change? Question your habits and eliminate the ones that are reducing you into the slavery of sameness.
Many of us are enslaved by the economic and social classes we reside in. But, think about this–the wealthy man rarely has lunch with his plumber. The surgeon dismisses the Chinese herbalists. The psychologist or priest does not think to ask a shaman about our relationship to each other or to the earth. Most of us are trapped by our education and by our limited experience. Although the freed individual is the source of all knowledge, most of us are imprisoned in a false sense of who we are. This false sense, or authority, comes from little more than transplanted prejudice and half-truths. Nothing serves us so handily, so frequently and as well as our own ignorance.
Our system of likes/dislikes renders us as predictable as clockwork and reduces us to machinery just waiting to be manipulated by our masters. Question your likes/dislikes and view your dislikes with an extra piece of scrutiny.
Today, unfortunately, we have the broom handle of political correctness shoved up our backside. What is deemed politically correct by our handlers is likely to enslave us via our prejudices. Political correctness stops us, or at least tries to stop us, from freely discussing the differences between men and women, between black and white, between Jew and gentile, or between gay and straight. The beauty and wonder of this world are its differences, but political correctness functions to silence you. It eliminates our ability to think about the issues of today that are important to our lives. But, more importantly, it earnestly tries to stop us from thinking for ourselves. In a defined free society, political correctness is the cop, the censor of the master, when it comes to free expression of thoughts and ideas. Question political correctness, challenge it and never let it do your thinking for you.
I hope you now see how important it is to bring back our childlike desire to question, to ask “why?” It is the only weapon we truly have against slavery. By what rights do our parents, teachers, professors, the media, the government program, the church dictate to us? Question every word, every phrase of every alleged truth that is told to you. Propaganda and myth are what is fed to you every waking minute of your day. This is done to anesthetize your mind and leave you lifeless and easily manipulated. Skepticism is the father of freedom. It is what holds the door open and allows freedom to occasionally slip in. The masters cannot bear the glare of a question–so question everything.
Questioning means becoming a child again. It is the way of innocence, of rebirth, and wisdom. It allows us to return to that exciting adventure of re-discovering ourselves and the world around us. The mind sets the boundaries of the cave, but the mind can also throw open the doors to permit the caged spirit to once more roam free.
Further information can be found in Gerry Spence book, “Seven simple steps to Personal Freedom”.