Most humans are banal in their everyday thinking. They lack originality and complexity required to understand the world.
The world is a big word. Let us just say, the everyday social and political issues.
For most of them, coming out of their rigid and singular frames is a process, and a difficult one indeed.
They do not appreciate when told that their ideas are base: based on passion and emotion rather than reason and experience, as the famous French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre describes in Anti-Semite and Jew.
Theorists Kay Whitlock and Michael Bronski define frame as a “conceptual path shaping how people understand an issue and what ought to be done about it.”
Psychologists say it is primordial for humans to crave certainty or singular articulations. It is convenient for them to see the world into rigid categories and understand it as such.
Geography, race, ethnicity, religion and politics further embolden these categories. Hence, what are fundamentally social constructions become social realities.
For the individual to deconstruct and reconstruct these realities, alternative imaginations are needed.
The alternative imaginations come from a number of channels. Social and cultural interactions are one.
The most attainable and instrumental way to challenge the all too common perceptual rigidity is reading and critical thinking.
Most people have access to books in the world today. Some more so than others. But generally, books are available to many.
Reading has for good reasons changed my worldview. As a voracious reader and a thinking freak, I am still mazed but the experience is nonetheless liberating.
I feel confused and challenged but belonged to the larger world without boundaries.
I hope this post inspires you to do your bit in adding more meaning and clarity to the world ridden with tensions.
Defusing tensions are possible when we all disrupt our biased frames and connect with others through authenticity, empathy and dispassionate understanding.