Opinion or Opinionated?
I am the sort of person that attracts a fair level of disagreement and opinion. I’m sure many of you cannot understand why with all the sound thoughts and ideas I write ;). Now let me make this clear, I appreciate those differences of opinion and other perspectives, it is discussion and reasoning together that will cause us to learn and grow and discover in this vast creative space known as thinking. Some of these people who bring a different perspective help me to see the head when I only see the tail, and that can only create a healthy forum of discussion and thought process. I love it when on a level playing field of thinking we can talk as if nobody has the full revelation and we all see in part. There is freedom to be ourselves and discover our own framework of theology and interpretation without having to yield our convictions or thought processes to anybody else. Personally my thoughts are ever evolving and shaping and I wonder if they will ever be shaped fully. I love that every day I can ponder, meditate, shift, change, and the whole process continues because every day is a new day of revelation or thought process. In fact I can get to a place where I disagree with myself and feel free and fine in that, it never shakes my faith and causes me to grow into Him daily. Every day my mind is renewed as it trails the thinking for that day. It is not about blowing with winds of doctrine, I do not hear enough preachers or read enough teaching for that to be the case, it is letting the mind run free without the constraints of being told what something says. Then when I share my thoughts I am always careful to share it as one opinion or perspective of many, and definitely not as the truth, the opinion that everyone else must hold. Now opinions I love, but shall I tell you what gets right up my nose? When opinion becomes the opinionated.
One Way Only.
These people only see things from one perspective and all other perspectives are wrong. They love to point out your error and make others see how wrong you are. They want you to give an answer to something but not to read the answer just so they can say even more and make you look even more wrong. If only they could ever say ‘this is how I see it’ but they don’t, it becomes I see it like this and so should you. I stupidly get involved sometimes but there is no point. It does not make me doubt what I see or even think about the other angle, it just makes me wound up, angry, sad. Why sad? Because for some people everything is so black and white and fully resolved and there is nowhere else to go but defend what is already known, instead of appreciating that thought could actually be evolving over time. I love it that each night while in the holy aisles I can think through all things and if I want never come to any conclusions. At the end of all these trails I may actually end up where I started but it is healthy to think. Opinionated people want to take away the thinking from you. There is an insecurity here. In fact I think the truth must be insecure if it needs that much defending. Real truth will prevail through any and every examination. People can argue new opinions against gravity but whatever I say or write gravity on earth will still be gravity. Drop this computer and it will not float. The truth is not threatened by opinion. I think the same is true for whatever is true about God. Sometimes I think we defend the truth by revealing the opposite, because truth will be truth whatever we say, it is not threatened, and nor is God by my questions. Teachers need to equip people not by giving them their version of the truth but by teaching them to think for themselves. Give them the tools and the permission to let the mind have some exercise for a change instead of feeding them your own conclusions. This is what it says, thus saith the Word of the Lord. Maybe a few more parables and stories would not go amiss when people had to find out for themselves about what all this means. Jesus spoke in parables to the people not in Scriptural exegesis. Yes He opened the Scriptures and read from them but still caused much debate even when He spoke of Himself through them, this was the Rabbinical way. I love to hear your opinion, but please do not speak to me as if I have to heed what you see or interpret because you are more immersed in something than me.
Agree to Disagree.
I do not think it is a case of agreeing to disagree. That is argument. It is a case of respect for the individual. I respect your individuality and journey enough to want to hear how you see things, what I do not respect is the desire to throw that upon my life as if my thoughts and the process of my journey mean nothing. Reason together means together we reason, not let us listen to your voice. I appreciate friends who speak into my life and hold up the danger signs by talking things through with me. Not to tell me to believe what they believe, but to show love when I wander. It is not about getting one over, but about looking out for. I am losing patience with opinionated people who only ever want to consider their side of the story. There is more than one of you so don’t get all defensive out there if you are reading this, thinking this is aimed at you. What you read on the Facebook wall is not the full story of what I have to put up with sometimes. Private messaging can be so fun sometimes. Some of you know me and have maybe even walked with me. Yet I would ask are you still walking with me to know my processes and thought patterns. I get those invites for coffee, many of them I turn down because I know it is the sprat to catch the mackerel. The concern because I need to think like this. I wonder if the Gospel writers ever got together to tell the others how wrong they were in their perspective, or whether they all appreciated seeing things from a different angle. All written for a different audience. Genesis 1 and 2, even the Bible begins with two perspectives of creation. Is it to argue and align and bring the doctrine of creation out of it, or just to see the spectrum of thought and opinion, and that maybe even truth has more than one face? Samuel, Kings and Chronicles. The prophets. Many share the same story from a fresh perspective. Not one claiming the full truth but all containing truth. To see perspective you can live with the contradictions contained there, but when the opinionated rises up all these nuances need to be explained away or at least swept under the carpet. I would rather treasure the questions. Appreciate the contradictions and hold onto the truth that is contained within. I do not scrawl all this to stop disagreements against what I am writing, if I wanted that I would stop blogging. I just wanted to say I am fed up to the back teeth of opinionated people whose thinking is such that there is no room for any other perspective or thought. Please reason with me, but be reasonable in your reason. Respect me, the journey, who I am in my world. And I will promise to respect you.
I just want to finish with something I wrote on my friends Dave Vaughan’s Facebook page this week;
“The problem is we are not allowed to think outside of the conditioning. It is like being the Borg, we have been assimilated, and when we think outside of the Hive we are a target for extermination in case we may create a rebellion against the dependence on the Hive. We say we believe in a Creator but are not allowed to let loose the creativity He has placed within our minds. Let them run wild with thoughts and ideas. His ways will always be wilder than my wildest imaginations anyway. He is not insecure enough to worry about outrageous ideas and seemingly dodgy doctrines. Time to let our minds ride with the wind and be unpredictable. The Hive cannot control us any longer.”
And then two things I wrote on my page as I disagreed with myself;
“Thinking of my last post I also have to say most of life is routine rather than adventure. The key is making the routine part of the adventure, then the whole of life can be breathtaking.”
I even reason with myself :).