It was the Texas senator, Sam Rayburn, who said, “When you’re talking you ain’t learning.” Ain’t that the Truth?

In the past week I’ve had occasion to listen to three different persons on three different subjects that appear to have totally different opinions, than I. The three subjects were, Religion, Alcoholism, and Freedom. All three sent me to the dictionary, (I think I have a dozen), and most express interpretations of words differently.

This started me thinking, one of the biggest difficulties we face in this country is a difference in the interpretation of the language, simple words. We converse and argue without agreement on the language we are speaking to each other. I personally realized a long time ago, we must agree on something, before we can intelligently disagree on anything, even if it’s an agreement that the grass is green.

I’m quite opinionated and it’s okay with me for anyone to disagree. That’s what makes horseracing.

The first person, a friend of mine, came for a visit and admitted they had a drinking problem, and attended AA meetings, then asked me if I thought they were insane. My response was, the first step in the 12-step recovery program states, “Ask God to restore me to sanity,” and right off the bat that suggest the crazies. Then the friend wanted to argue that point. Which brought on a lengthy discussion about some of the admitted actions, that were less than sane. We are still friends, but I wondered, why argue over the obvious.

My second encounter was with a friend discussing healing, which evolved into areas of modalities of Oriental methods of healing, which resulted in subsequent emails, stating Buddhism is not a religion but a philosophy and a way of living. Having lived in Japan for four years, I always viewed Buddhism as a religion, and the statement sent me to the dictionary, which stated: “Religion, the beliefs, attitudes emotions, behavior and etc., consistently man’s relationship with powers and principles of the Universe – an object of conscientious devotion.” I thought, millions of orientals flock to Buddhist temples to worship Buddha, so how can one define it as not a religion?

Then the third encounter was an email from a friend in response to an article I had written on the Philosophy of Freedom, stating my position that Freedom is learned and must be taught to be understood. But my friend stated it differently, saying: “I think humans have an inborn understanding of, and hunger for Freedom, and that it takes a lifetime of brainwashing, starting from an early age – to make them forget what they instinctively knew.”

Again I went to the dictionary, which stated: “Freedom – liberty from bondage or slavery – liberty to move or act, without outside interference, coercion or restriction, not controlled.”

I have spent a lifetime studying philosophy, religions, Freedom, and understanding alcoholism, and within a span of a few days, discovered that three different friends interpreted those three subjects quite differently than I. And I’m perfectly satisfied with the discoveries I have made about all three, and no longer search for meaning of those three subjects.

In no way, shape, form or fashion do I suggest they are wrong and I’m right, but to point out a vast difference of opinion on those three important subjects. Obviously, their belief and thinking processes are quite different from mine, and I respect the opinion of anyone to believe whatever they perceive. All three persons, living in different areas of the country, are friends and will remain so, however I was suddenly struck by such a difference in the way we perceive abstract ideas. Very fundamental differences in the way we perceive ideas, all of us encounter during our lifetime.

In my opinion, most families have degrees of alcoholism, somewhere in their background. All families have some kind of belief relative to religion, and all of us are subjected to Freedom or degrees of bondage. Accordingly, to one degree or another, our lives are impacted by these three subjects, whether we admit it or not. And I’m all for laying the cards on the table to discuss.

This great country founded upon the Principles of The Declaration of Independence, is on the verge of collapse. And in order for hopes to regain that which we once enjoyed, we are overdue to discuss, agreeing or disagreeing, areas of difference which have brought us to this brink.

We are living in an era where it is taboo to even discuss Freedom in many circles. And alcoholism is the big family secret, along with drug addiction. We have the tools in such great moral guides as the Ten Commandments and the Declaration of Independence, to guide us through the maelstrom of break-ups in families, and break-down in morality, causing so much murder, bullying in schools, and all the problems we face and hear about on the nightly news, as we sink further and further into the system of Socialism, pervasive in this Nation.

By our very nature we are a species of different values, and nothing wrong with that, however there’s a set of Universal Principles which are undeviating and immutable, and I don’t think we are born knowing them, but must be taught and discovered, in order to apply and abide by.

I’m here to learn and much I don’t know, and those with whom I disagree teach me, as well as my many mentors I do agree with. I am grateful to friends who take the time to speak up and speak out and express themselves, their ideas, opinions and beliefs, which I respect.

The great writer and economist, Thomas Sowell, stated: “The fatal attraction of government is that it allows busy-bodies to impose decisions on others without paying any price themselves. That enables them to act as if there were no price, even when there are ruinous prices – paid by others.”




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  1. Randy says:

    Wow. What a powerful observation illustrating how ignorance of the meaning of words keeps us in bondage. Your three friends can’t even understand what is clearly defined. The are in a state of denial and delusion. It’s “willful” ignorance in my opinion.

    It’s like a obese person arguing that eating isn’t a problem for them.

  2. […] recent article titled “When You’re Talking You Ain’t Learning,” How Do You Define Freedom, Issue 722, seems to have stirred the intellectual nettle of some of my readers, and any discussion about […]

  3. xiqieicae says:

    A work of a harvest,exactly because of your troublesome writing, we can feel so much blessedness, learn more our own understanding of their. The world could be so wonderful.

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