Certain first principles define what it is like to be human. They are what define consciousness, the way we think, and the way that we interpret the world. I cannot put my finger on all of them, but I know that language is one of them. Language is a tool for communication. The better we have a mastery of language and communication, the better we can get our points across. Another problem is that this is only half of the equation. There is the listening aspect to language as well. We need to understand the nature of language in so far as it is limiting the other person. We need to understand the level of mastery that the other person has of the language to assess their meaning and their intentions with what they are communicating.
One assumption that I am making is that the goal of language is communicating and that the goal of communicating is understanding. With understanding there can be many things. Of particular interest to our society is collaboration. Other things might be debate and disagreement to try to find a more appropriate model of truth. However, once we have gotten to the point of finding understanding, we need to come to a few things. Do we agree on the assessment of the assumptions? Are we clear on what all of the terms mean and how we are using them? Do we agree on the conclusions that are drawn? If we don’t agree, on what point does the disagreement hinge? If we do agree on the conclusion, how important is this issue? What do we do next? Where does this rank on our personal priority list? There are many points where shit can hit the fan, but this is where the dung is flung.
How do we construct priority? It is based on our values. It is based on what matters most to us. Why do we need to make this distinction? TIME>>> Time is the killer. Time is what makes conflict. It is what sends people off in a bunch of different directions trying to sort out what it is that they should be dedicating their life to. Without time, everything just would BE. We would be in a place with no conflict. We would be in a place where all options have been played out and all meaning and value and the things that we are so wrapped up in this existence would be meaningless. We would be able to just focus on the infinite.
The problem is that we are stuck in time, and we cannot get to a place without time except perhaps through death, maybe. So, in the interim, we are forced to align values and seek to do the best we can with our time based on what we deem most important. What our society needs, and what we need is to find understanding of others. To have conversations and to seek to align values through understanding. We can disagree about what people value, and that is fine, but we must remember that what they value is at some level understandable. Their unique life experience, what they have seen, the people they have interacted with, and the ideas that they have encountered have all shaped their worldview… and most likely it will be different from our own. But isn’t this the best opportunity to encounter new ideas, shake up our own worldviews, put our precepts through trial by fire, and remember that we are all people, all trying to manage the crazy effect that time has on us, and can’t you imagine that through understanding each other, we would be able to find a better path forward, together?
This is not to say that all ideas are created equal. There is definitely a hierarchy of ideas. Some are good, and some are bad. Determining the absolute yardstick for this, in my opinion, is that the best ideas are the ideas that maximize the well-being of all living creatures and the environment. There are definitely destructive ideas out there, and those are the ideas that we need to be able to rid ourselves of. We all hold destructive ideas. We all hold noble ideas but act in destructive ways. We could all do with having more empathy for those that hold destructive ideas and practice destructive ways. They obviously have not sufficiently encountered good ideas and constructive ways of living that bring about well-being.