Opinion: a view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge.
I have a lot of opinions. On lots of topics. Politics, religion, climate change, NSA, gun violence, racism, the Middle East, poverty, and on and on and on. But I’ve decided I don’t really need opinions. But is it possible to NOT have opinions. More on that in a moment.
What are my opinions based on (if not fact or knowledge)? Views expressed by family and friends (as a child and throughout life); personal experience; reading; media. What am I overlooking?
Does it even make sense to ask how “accurate” my opinions are? Can opinions be “valid?” I really don’t see how. Too fluid. I might be big on gun control today and change my mind after someone breaks into my home.
When do I NEED opinions? In the voting booth? Discussions in the coffee shop? Does my having an opinion on any of the topics above make a real difference? I don’t think so. Actions make a difference but not opinions. Do you have to have an opinion before you act? Perhaps.
I’ve concluded opinions have NO real value or use. But is not having an opinion even an option? Can I function without having opinions? Are opinions so much a part of the fabric of who we are we can’t help but have and express them? Is it possible to “catch” myself having an opinion… and then deciding NOT to?
Opinions seem like dead weight to me. Like lugging around a backpack full of rocks. What would it feel like to set that backpack down?
I’m going to write each of my cherished opinions on a rock, put it in a backpack, and carry that backpack around for a week. When I hear myself expressing an opinion (verbally or mentally) I’m going to open the backpack and find that opinion/rock and hold it until I’m done.
You’re just kidding yourself, Mays. You might not EXPRESS your opinions but you still HAVE them. True. But for starters, I’d settle for not spraying my opinions on others. And just being aware of when I’m under the influence of an opinion.
I’ll let you know how this little experiment goes.