I admit it. I am intolerant of raw stupidity, stupidity fueled by emotional reactions to issues that require intellect for understanding. Were I more understanding, I might grasp that emotional responses are the only ones available to some people; I might understand that some people do not have the intellectual capacity to comprehend the issues confronting them, so they turn to emotion, the only tool available to them.

Perhaps, though, I might have the capacity to be more understanding but simply choose the non-empathic road, allowing myself to coldly judge on the basis of intellectual inadequacy. That gets to the heart of my intolerance, I think. I have the ability to be tolerant, but I choose to overlook that ability in favor of the ability to judge.

There is a vast difference between ignorance and stupidity. Ignorance is the absence of knowledge; I am willing to tolerate ignorance, up to a point. I define stupidity, though, as willful ignorance, ignorance built upon refusal to allow knowledge to replace emptiness.

I will look back at this post and be upset with myself for having written it. But it is best, I think, to record such moods and attitudes so I can, later, successfully assign those attributes to characters about whom I am writing. Today, though, I am writing simply to vent a little steam.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
This entry was posted in Emotion, Empathy, Intellect, Rant. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Steam

  1. Juan, what’s working here is Trish’s overactive, ego-driven imagination. It seems, from what she wrote here, that she assumes everything that’s written is about her. The history: She made some B.S. comments on Facebook about a PBS video I posted (about Ajijic/Chapala as a retirement haven) and I challenged her. She reacted the way she seems to react to anyone who disagrees with her. I thought the issue was dead, after I attempted to mend fences and said we would just have to agree that we have different perspectives. But I woke up this morning to find this incoherent screed.

    Trish, if you read this comment, know this: this post had absolutely nothing to do with you; it was written in response to an interaction I had with an idiot locally. That having been said, after reading your rant this morning, it might well apply to you.

  2. jserolf says:

    “Vaya, vaya”…what’s the goss here? Are there secret references working in here? 😉

  3. Trisha says:

    Oh, by the way, John. If anyone had to let off steam it would have been me!!!

  4. Trisha says:

    John, I’ve thought over this post since you wrote it here. I know this was the aftermath of your post of U.S:A retires going off to Mexico, for their golden years. It always makes me sad when someone thinks there’s right, just because I wrote a rebuttal to their post. Why wouldn’t my response be “riddled”, as you say in response. But riddled with what? Did you forget the subject that was at hand, and what you posted was the real message? And yet perhaps this post appeared one day after that discussion. I KNOW that you speak of me here. And, yes I can piss off people. I’m so sorry that my answers to your post were not expected, nor well received by you. But, others happened to agree with my comments…some very well traveled. Well, I’m not mistaken in what I tried my best to express on your post, Everything about that video put me off. And because of it, and my opinion of what I’ve lived for only living after 30 years enters to the realms of your steam. As we say here “vaya, vaya”….my, my (and shake the head in question:) This post made me feel bad, for as you wrote, you could not at least here on your blog, assign those attributes to characters about whom I am writing. I know I was one of those “characters” was me. Sorry you feel this way, John.

  5. Juan says:

    Agreed. There are moments/times/instances when I have judged over something I thought was some idiotic, self centered move, because to my way of thinking, idiocy comes when we become so centered upon ourselves that stretching out to understand someone else becomes something we overlook, i.e. the guy texting when he should be watching the road; the woman whose parked her trolley in the middle of grocery store aisle; the person who parks his “wonderful” in such a way that it takes two parking spaces; the self-centeredness of the idiot who commits murder.

    Not that I am without fault:

    So, one time last year I am doing some Sunday work at Metro Ministries serving food to the homeless. One of the homeless there ordered eggs, bacon and pancakes. When served to him, he complains to send it back because he wanted scrambled and not over-easy.

    Hence, my hot, immediate reaction was to say, “You take what we give you.” But I cooled down and I thought about, and I thought how I was wrong, and that any man or woman — homeless or not — deserves some respect.

    I salute your definition. Willful ignorance!

    So, like you, I too am troubled by stupidity; my blood pressure rises because of it, and while it may be argued that any of us may have passed judgment unfairly, we are still — on occasion — called to do this task based on what is before us. And, I am most certainly not some motley, passive cow, mooooving through life without a test.

    Even Jesus vented over willful ignorance.

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