Being Opened-Minded in the World Today

Jacob Kirsten
July 25, 2015

Being opened-minded in the world today can mean different things to some people. On one side of the spectrum, being politically correct can be considered open-minded while on the other side it can mean going against what you believe in.

In Unflattening, Nick Sousanis talks about how being open-minded is important for one's self and how it can lead to different conclusions that wouldn't have been considered before (27).

In an earlier essay I wrote "Planetary Motion," I briefly touched on a world where two things can be true in the same world (95). The concept of this is important in personal and professional lives because it promotes compromise and problem solving. If we can't consider options other than our own, how will we ever learn anything? In the professional world, it's extremely important to keep an open mind because people won't be willing to work with you if compromise isn't met.

We live in a world that is constantly changing and, with that, we need an open mind to keep up with society and technology. Keeping a closed mind in today's world means we may miss out on some incredible advancements such as television, computers, and the Internet. Consider this: someone refuses to get vaccinations because they believe the vaccination itself will give them the disease. Today's understanding of viruses and medicine prove that it actually helps your body create antibodies to defend against that virus. In the long run, being close minded in a situation like that can result in becoming extremely sick. Approaching life the same way day after day can be boring and can reduce our intellectual aptitude.

We live in a world where 84% of the population has some type of faith or deity. Sometimes respecting their religion and their beliefs can be classified as being open minded in a world that is increasingly becoming close minded while calling the politically correct answer open minded. An example of this is if a particular individual disagrees with someone's choices, they are branded as someone who is close minded.

People often mistake close-mindedness to standing up for what you believe in, rather than give into what is known today as political correctness. As a Christian, people often brand me as someone who is close-minded because I stand up for what I believe in when it's defending my own morals. Don't mistake that for someone calling another's morals or personal beliefs wrong.

As Nick Sousanis said, "such is the case with our flatlanders, trapped within the borders of their vision." (24) If we strive to be more open minded and think in a more 3-dimensional way, there will be unlimited opportunities for expanding our mind and intelligence; seeing the world not as flatland, but as an entirely unexplored world.

Photo Credit: Eddi van W.