The Role of the Human Mind
How does the human mind perceive things? And how does it work? What makes us so different when it comes to attitude, assessments, and beliefs? With a little bit of reflection, I found a clue.
Imagine if the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) announced one day that their astronauts had reached the planet Saturn, where they found creatures that looked like humans, yet made sounds like animals. Would you confirm or deny the news?
Of course not. You have never been to Saturn, so you cannot confirm if this news is true or false. If you trust NASA then you will believe them, but your brain is not capable of evaluating their claim because we cannot evaluate what is unseen to us.
In that sense, we cannot confirm or deny the existence of angels, devils, afterlife, or any teachings that have been revealed to us through religion.
But what if the very same space agency declares that its astronauts have reached Saturn, and then says they have never reached Saturn, what would your reaction be?
Of course, you will not accept their claim. And here comes the significant fact regarding the human mind when it is introduced to new information – the human mind does not accept contradictions.
Indeed, this is how Prophet Abraham recognized God, as I have learned since my childhood. He simply excluded contradictions. In his quest to find God, he excluded the stars, the moon, and the sun because they shrink and vanish and it is impossible for the One who is dominant in heaven and on earth to be absent even for a while.
When Subjectivity Takes the Lead
Contradictions may come in several forms; if you tend to reject any information that contradicts what you believe, no matter how logical the information seems, then you have a subjective personality. That is why we find, with no assessments whatsoever, many people blindly follow different creeds that are not based on sound logic. I, for example, consider atheism as an illogical creed. Atheists are not bound to a certain religion or revelation, yet they follow the quotes of others or books which lead them to believe that information embedded in genes comes from nothing or is produced from mud!! This is a natural human attitude; we tend to inherit and sometimes borrow creeds, irrespective of their authenticity unless we are fully aware of the importance of objectivity in assessing what resides in our hearts.
The Worst Consequence of Subjectivity
It is generally agreed that subjective assessment is not suited to sound decision making in business or politics, yet “clever” politicians know when to use it. Subjective judgments give dictators the opportunity to rule with arrogance, discrimination, and inequality, as they insist on appearing to be heroes in the eyes of their people and discrediting their opponents by propagating false patriotic stories and lies.
In spite of the fact that many of these false stories contradict themselves, facts or history, people still willingly hold them in their hearts because it matches what they have been taught since their childhood in schools and/or through the media, and over time illusions become a creed, and so they embrace it. That is how leaders move their people like herds and make them blindly support their unjust decisions and actions.
Unfortunately, I have experienced a time when people were blind enough to cheer for the genocide of their fellow citizens, including the elderly, women and children, and give ridiculous excuses for the massacres, just as long as it was carried out by their so-called “brave and noble” leader! It was a kind of strong awakening for me that drove me to stop, reflect and take myself out of the masses. I then started my quest to find an explanation for what was going on around me. What made these people prefer being “brainwashed” and spending their whole lives as slaves to their leader? “Love your country”, “Support your army” are lofty slogans that shut down the ability of the mind to realize that the actions of their leaders are contradicting what they say. It shuts up any call for justice, like a tasty piece of cheese that causes a mouse to be trapped.
When Objectivity Takes the Lead
On the other hand, if you reject information that contradicts itself, logic and/or facts, even if it is supported by your old opinions or beliefs, then you are an objective person. You are mature enough to choose the right path and to support justice, help the innocent and embrace unconditional love.
Being objective doesn’t mean that you have to abandon your personal opinions or ignore your emotions, after all we are humans, and it is very natural to have some preferences of our own. However, those preferences should not make us deviate from following the call of truth; for example, we should not support the unjust no matter how dear they are to us.
Being objective is not easy, and training and effort are necessary to gain this fabulous skill.
It also needs extensive research to know the true history and re-evaluate what we have been taught.
Furthermore, it needs courage, as many times you will find yourself among the minority or even alone in the face of many. You may feel alienated from others; and you will need perseverance to remain steady. You may even give up some of the beliefs you were fed, or lose some of your family members and close friends. Sometimes you may lose your freedom! History reveals that people lost their lives just because they insisted that the earth revolved around the sun! However, on the bright side, no one loses their dignity or consistency when following the logical path. Instead, they live for thousands of years in the minds of new generations to come, as it is these people that make the world a better place.
The human mind is the most precious gift that God has bestowed on us. Certainly, it is one of the main things that differentiate us from other creatures in the animal kingdom, and using this gift in a proper way makes us true humans in our actions and in what we say; what a beautiful blessing this can be!