So. What Do You Think?

Thinking DummyA chain of serendipitous occurrences, all those probable and deliciously improbable events, lead us here. To this very moment. And, in this moment, in this life, I find myself grateful to have been bestowed with the indulgence of an agile and malleable imagination.

As a child I remained positively jubilant left to my own devices, often with no more than a cardboard box or a humble stick to entertain myself, in fact I actually spent a fair few months wearing a plant pot as my favorite hat. Yes, I did indeed look rather dapper.

As I’ve grow older and begun to rot I no longer wear plant pots (normally).

I think. I think a lot. I think about serious things, about random things, about stupid things and about very, very funny things (well, at least I think so).

Over the years I’ve lived a somewhat adventurous, diverse and, at times, an ever so slightly hedonistic life. I’ve been in some fascinating situations, I’ve questioned everything I have seen, all I have be told and all I have known. However, there are a few peculiarities in life which managed to escape the inquisition, to even avert detection entirely?

These colloquial elements so familiar, so vehemently blatant and obvious to us are entwined, unconditionally and totally, into that which we experience, believe and expect.

These illusive subjects? Well, the first one at least, is Identity.

I do not refer to those little plastic cards you have about your person nor to that artifact so often pilfered by internet so-and-sos. What I mean is You. Or rather “I”. Where does this overwhelmingly and reassuringly constant feeling of individuality and unique singularity come from?

As a wee child there is precious little awareness of these other worlds, these subjective sudo-realities. Usually, developmental studies show this starts to develop by the age of four. Realisation that there are various opinions, beliefs and desires which may compliment or oppose your own. But why? Why do you think the way you do. Why do you like fuchsia, adore pizza yet despise tomatos, traffic jams and distrust people called George?

More importantly still what kind of person are you? Are you a caring, ready-to-help-anyone person or a short tempered places-to-go-things-to-do person?

The commonly held belief seems to be that you are A person. You have AN identity. That identity is YOU.

Phenomenally the liberating consequence of studying a subject in depth is that you tend to find out that the general beliefs are, at best simplified, at worse plain wrong.

I hope in the following posts to illuminate, if only a little, some areas including identity, subjectivity, perception and consciousness.

A few references to start with would be:

Questioning Identity: Gender, Class, Ethnicity (Understanding Social Change)

The Natural and the Social: Uncertainty, Risk and Change (Introduction to the Social Sciences)

Ordering Lives: Family, Work and Welfare (Understanding Social Change)

The Psychology Of Perception


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