Your Definition of Open-Minded May be Faulty



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Liberals are often considered open-minded while
Conservatives are labeled the opposite.
Let's envision an open-minded person right now. Close your eyes and think of all the things associated with a person who fits that description. What opinions do they have? How do they lean on political issues? What does their Facebook profile look like?

The Average Assumption

    These are some qualities most people think of.
    1. Has tried or still does drugs.
    2. Is Buddhist but thinks all religions are cool.
    3. Bisexual
    4. LGBTQ Supporter
    5. Liberal
    6. Artist
    7. Really appreciates flowers.
    8. Thinks rules are dumb
    9. Hates authority but supports big government programs.
    10. Wears colorful clothes and says "dude" a lot.

     Why I'm Closed-Minded According to Society

    Here is how someone actually finished an argument with me on Google Plus the other day. I was explaining that I believe in one God, and she said she believes "all religions are just different paths to the same divine light." I of course questioned what the heck a divine light was and asked how contradicting religions can simultaneously be correct.

    In the end, I was willing to have an extensive discussion yet she closed off all further comments with this:
    "Ahh another closed minded person - enjoy your life -- Many blessings to you  Love and light"

    She determined that I, a person willing to have a two-way discussion, was the closed-minded person while she, a person only willing to accept her own opinion, was the open-minded one.

    Unfortunately I've had the same problem with people in arguments about marijuana legalization. Instead of them offering good reasons, they just cut off the argument saying that I am closed minded for not thinking drugs are fantastic.

    Someone was arguing with me about transsexual people, the T in LGBT, and I asked why LGTB promotes two contradictory messages.
    • LGBs should be proud of who they are and not change a thing about themselves.
    • Ts should go ahead and change who they are.
    When I brought up the contradiction, they accused me of having a closed-mind and ended the argument.

    Another time, I was debating someone over whether or not marijuana should be legalized. My point was that marijuana could, in fact, be harmful and supporting legalization on a campaign of lies is a bad way to go.

    They, for some reason, said that I was simply not open-minded enough to see why marijuana is harmless and they could not discuss it further with me for that reason.

    What is wrong with those examples?

    By the definition of open-minded, there are no preset opinions or lifestyles that automatically make someone open-minded or closed-minded.

    While it is GREAT to take people's ideas and opinions into account, if they contradict with evidence and what you know to be true, there is NO reason to accept their argument. If they refuse to provide logic, you do not have to accept their argument. Simply having an opinion doesn't make you closed-minded. Refusing to admit you are wrong when evidence says you are wrong does.

    Open-mindedness is, by definition, a way of thinking. Not a set of opinions.

    Open-minded: willing to consider different ideas or opinions

    Notice it doesn't specify which ideas or opinions you have to accept.
    Willingness to evaluate multiple alternatives is open-minded
    Open-Mindedness is the willingness to evaluate multiple alternatives not the obligation to accept alternatives that are deemed open-minded by society.

    Stay strong in your arguments. If someone calls you closed-minded for not accepting their position, then THEY are the ones not willing to consider different ideas or opinions.

    Now give me your ideas and opinions about this post in the comments! Remember, you don't have to agree with me to still exhibit open-mindedness.