Thursday, June 21, 2012

Belief of Action

An idea is not important because you think it; an idea is only important because you make the world think it.

There is an egotism in the world today that is responsible for the decline of political activism, and that egotism is from the misconception that all our ideas and beliefs are of equal value because we are equal. And while we may be, our beliefs are not.

The beliefs of the protester outside an international summit are more important than the beliefs of an observer who does nothing. The beliefs of the volunteer who gets people to support his or her party are more important than the beliefs of the volunteer who only argues policy. The beliefs of the candidate who convinces a public crowd to support him or her are more important than the beliefs of the candidate who can only convince a crowd of members.

It is self-centered to think our beliefs are important merely because they reside in us. Beliefs that do not motivate us to act cannot be ascribed value by anyone, including ourselves.

This egotism that our beliefs have merit regardless of whether we act on them is derived from the belief we are all equal and that our capacities have equal standing and merit. But beliefs can only be evaluated by their consequences. The merit of beliefs is not owed to the equality of people, but the actions of each person.

The decline in political activism has been caused by more and more people thinking that their beliefs have merit simply because they have them and not what they do because of them. That their pro-choice belief has validity by itself and does not require to be acted on by sending emails, voting, or protesting. That their belief this government spends too much is right merely because they believe it and its force does not depend on going to meetings, talking, and running in an election.

The misconception that the merit of our beliefs is not dependent on the actions we take is responsible for the lack of political activism in our country.

We all have beliefs, but having them does not make them important, acting on them does.

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