Never Believe What You Think

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Never believe what you think.

Just because there is an idea in your head doesn’t make it real. That goes double for what other people think, and what they want you to believe, because people always want you to believe what they do. It reinforces the certainty of their mental world – which is, of course, not real.

Finally, never believe what social media and media tells you to believe. If you beleive the media then your worldview is that there are rapes, murders and riots on every street corner, and hate groups infesting every back ally. Meanwhile, when we walk out onto the street we typically see none of these things. Many of us go through our lives without ever witnessing even one such incident. It’s a bizarre discrepancy. All these things do exist. They just don’t happen very often.

I had a Muslim friend in Hong Kong who was convinced America is trying to destroy Islam. Every morning he and his friends opened their social media feed to share any story which confirmed this belief. Then he would say to me, “Did you hear about the Americans… etc etc etc?” One day I pointed out to him that Islamic immigrants were emigrating to the US at a rate greater than any other religion. I asked him why a country which was trying to destroy a religion was welcoming them through its borders. My friend just smiled sheepishly.

What you focus upon expands. When we look at the moon on the horizon, it seems huge. But if we take a photo of it, it appears tiny. The photo tells you the truth. The mind presents the distortion. Such is the nature of perception.

Never believe what you think.

Marcus

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