“Those who never retract their opinions love themselves more than they love truth.”
Joseph Joubert tweet
I sat down this afternoon to watch the sunset and my thoughts soon had me turning over some conversations and experiences from the first months of this year. Many people I’ve spoken to recently have been questioning some of their beliefs, which is pretty common as we get older. It got me wondering about some of the things where my opinion has changed, so here is a short list of things I no longer believe in.
Work As A Chore – when I hear people complain about it being Monday or listen to the famous cry, Thank God it’s Friday, I feel sad. These sentiments say nothing profound about work itself, they merely reflect poor life choices, or the consequences of limited options. Work is noble, work shapes and civilises us, work is, as Kahil Gibran said, “love made visible.”
Community – I believe in family, in friends, even in civil society, but I don’t believe in community. I understand and remember the camaraderie that comes with striving to a shared purpose, in a team, club, workplace or church group, but I don’t believe in community. Interestingly, some of the people I know who are really successful online and in social media are also skeptical about the idea of community.
Being Discovered – there is no more stupid, disenabling and enfeebling idea living parasitically in the minds of artists and especially musicians, than the notion of getting discovered. We’ve even carried it into the digital age, which makes no sense, since in every way it is now harder, not easier to discover creative work that is not being constantly pushed to the front of the avalanche of stuff we see every day.
Lifestyle – I’m always more than a little confused when I hear people talk about their “lifestyle.” I struggle to believe I once dropped this pointless term into conversations. Lifestyle seems to mean how impressive, expensive and envy-inducing your leisure time is, or sometimes it means personal moral choices which shouldn’t need to be justified or explained. Neither of which is a fertile ground for interesting conversation or thought.
The Power Of Ideas – I love ideas, but we live in a post-ideas age. Knowledge is no longer power in an age where access to information is ubiquitous. I grew up having to derive solutions from a limited pool of information I could access, but children today can google anything. Who even needs to take notes?