Define Ignorance: Reducing Our Ignorance, Step By Step
All of us, to a certain degree, are guilty of ignorance, or rather, of being unaware.
This is ignorance that is perhaps more forgivable than most.
For instance, it is more than possible that we could have all spent half an hour each evening reading up on the life experiences of others, asking them questions, and learning about the histories of cultures.
Some do. Many don’t. Does this mean that you are racially ignorant in a negative context?
Not necessarily. We simply cannot know everything, nor can we presume to know what other people live through simply because of what is written down.
This was beautifully articulated in Robin William’s Oscar-winning movie scene.
Yet it can also be very important to take steps to reduce our ignorance each day, at least to the extent we are able.
It seems as though in modern times, people either live in fear of being called obnoxious or xenophobic or rather find time to label others this way.
But what if these people, on both sides of the aisle, dropped the rhetoric and actually decided to learn something? Well, surely that would make for a healthier society.
Here’s how you can perform this most needed of tasks as an individual.
Think Before You Speak
Thinking before we speak can be a great life lesson to learn no matter the context, but it can very much matter in today’s world.
Online platforms such as Twitter give us the chance to attack or pile on to someone we do not know in a matter of seconds or allows us to post our opinion without regard.
But it can be nice to simply think before we speak and to always double-check what we are about to type or say, or put out there into the world. Is it truly a reflection of your ideas?
Are you educated enough to make that statement with confidence? What might be the cost of your words? If everyone thought this, you can be sure the world would be a significantly less toxic place.
Define Ignorance: Seek To Learn More
Always strive to learn more about certain topics we may have become introduced to.
For instance, you might wish to understand how a deaf person communicates now that you have someone in your class which requires you to interact with them in this way, or you may simply wish to study history before you invoke it with confidence to win an argument.
Remember, it’s best to be quiet and considered a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.
Never Make Assumptions
Never make assumptions about someone’s lived experience. In order to defend someone, or belittle them, it’s so easy to think that we know it all. But do we?
Do we even know it all about our own experience? Humility is perhaps one of the most precious and needed commodities on the Earth right now, and so we’d invite you to just see how it can soften you with care.
None of this is intended to be seen as patronizing. We can all fall into these traps.
But with the prior advice, we hope you can reduce whatever sureties you have in the face of being unaware.