Get Exposed to More Awful Ideas

Tommy Leung wrote this on Aug 29, 2018
2 minute read

I read quite a bit. There’s never a time when I don’t have a book that I’m reading.

My list of books to read is so long it might as well be infinite.

I will probably never get to all of them. There’s always new books being published. New ideas being developed.

The goal is not to read every book ever published. That will never happen. Just as we won’t ever watch every show ever created.

It is not possible in the world of Netflix.

But I read what I can just as I watch what I can within the time I’ve set aside for such activities.

Consuming content is about exposing oneself to different ideas. Sometimes even ideas that directly contradict what we currently believe.

We don’t betray our beliefs when we listen to opposing views. We are made better for it.

“The less one knows, the more he thinks he knows, and the more willing he is to employ any and all measures to enforce his views upon others.”

- Paul Harris

It is ever easier to silo ourselves in our safe and comfortable bubbles. Social networks allow us to follow people like us. Our feeds become echoes of our own beliefs.

It feels nice to have our beliefs confirmed even when we created the confirmation apparatus.

It is our own Magic Mirror on the wall. Everyday we look into this mirror and it tells us what we want to hear. And we are pleased.

Until the illusion gets broken. Then our world falls apart because we’ve coddled ourselves. We’ve made ourselves fragile.

Some of us realize our past faults and proceed to make ourselves anti-fragile. Others look for ways to silence each Snow White that comes around.

The former is a better decision than the latter.

And we don’t have to wait until our world gets shattered into a thousand pieces to start. Break your world now.

Don’t wait for some event or someone to disrupt you. Disrupt yourself.

I’m not a social media junkie but I do like Twitter. And I follow people with widespread views. Often times I see awful ideas that stir an internal anger.

I believe the idea is stupid. I shake my head. And that’s it. I don’t unfollow or mute or any other such nonsense.

Their ideas might be wrong. Or maybe they are right and I’m wrong.

Often times when the student is ready, a master appears. Or the ideas are truly awful.

I can’t know which is which ahead of time. So I keep opposing views within my orbit. I will maintain my beliefs but I won’t hide from opposing ones.

“I like disagreement because it forces both sides to question their own opinions and why they feel that way.”

- Sam Hunt