Daily Nugget of Gold 617
Thought versus Entertainment
In one of his many books, The Science of Being Great, Wallace Wattles points out that we have invented a great many escapes from the task of thinking. We’ll do almost anything to entertain ourselves rather than spend our time in thought. We’ve invented games, we read novels, we find hobbies, watch plays, and much more- and Wattles made these observations over 100 years ago. Nowadays we can add television as the granddaddy of them all for entertainment, as well as passing the time on social networking sites, listening to music, and many more modern day dodges. The truth of Wattle’s observations remain the same, we will do almost anything to avoid thinking. Here we have the most unbelievably fantastic gift and it’s on the shelf, collecting dust as we pass the time away. Are you feeling a little uncomfortable in your chair right now? That’s probably a good thing.
We can be given the world’s fastest and best race horse but if we don’t ever do anything except let it stand in the pasture and eat hay, we’re never going to reap the benefits bestowed upon us by the receipt of that gift, will we? You’ve heard of the term, “use it or lose it” and most people lose it completely over their lifetime and look back with regret if they even have a clue what they lost. Some people never know what could have been because they remained blissfully ignorant of it all until they depart.
We have an entire educational system devoted to ignoring how to cultivate a generation of thinkers and instead we go for memorization of useless facts, as if there was no place to find them when we need to. What good is an encyclopedic memory if you aren’t on Jeopardy or playing Trivial Pursuit? The name of the latter ought to give us a clue about how important knowing a bunch of random facts is in life. Thinkers are another breed, however. Thinkers find ways to solve things. Thinkers concern themselves with greater questions than which channel has something on that interests them right now. Here’s the catch, however- thinking is work. It’s wonderfully well paid work, if you do it often enough, but it IS work!
If you’ve “thought about” doing something significant with your life, if you’ve been inclined to want to make something happen other than what we see everyone else around us doing, then we want to really grab hold of this wonderful gift and use it as it was intended to be used. We want to set aside some uninterrupted time to engage in thinking and the best way to free up some time is to take a long, hard look at where we waste time. Perhaps we should start the day a little earlier instead of waiting to become like a zombie at night flipping past channel after channel of reruns and junk food for our minds. Perhaps when we get our next book, maybe something more along the lines of “thought provoking” rather than entertainment would be in order.
You can make this change if you really want to, and you know, you’ll feel so much better about yourself if you do and stick with it. Don’t you think?
Question of the Day to Ask Ourselves
“What can I do today to pass up some junk food for the mind in order to take time to think?”
Copyright 2009-2012 Kevin Littleton, all rights reserved.