Saturday, February 28, 2009


Earlier, a fellow student in one of my classes came by to ask me what I thought of the class.  This kind of thing is always a little uncomfortable for me, and not just because it smells of politics.

I do not usually form opinions or make judgments about events and circumstances in my life.  Things happen, and I deal with them.  Forming an opinion about the situation is just a waste of brainpower.  It is a pointless exercise at best and an obstacle to good decision making at worst.

So when someone asks me what I think of something, it is always hard for me to give a good answer.  I usually end up listing facts, like "The last homework helped me learn a lot of stuff."  If pressed, I may say that I think one aspect of a thing is good while another is bad.  But I almost never form blanket judgments like "The teacher is bad."

I do have likes and dislikes.  I will form opinions about the kinds of food that I like, or the kinds of books that I like to read.  My opinions about the things I choose to consume or spend my time on are fairly strong and stable, and are not generally affected by the situation or by popular opinion.

But when it comes to things that actually affect me, I almost always have an attitude of Zen equanimity.  I accept life as it comes.  I try to avoid the intellectual arrogance that would compel me to form opinions and then act as if my opinion were a fact of nature.

Of course, the irony here is that I have just written a blog post talking about something that happened to me that I did not like, and why I did not like it...

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