"The unexamined life is not worth living." These words are said to have been spoken by the Greek philosopher, Socrates, at his trial for corrupting the morals of the youth of Athens for which he was sentenced to death. Socrates is said to have made this statement after he chose death rather than exile. Socrates believed that philosophy, literally the love of wisdom (philo = love, sophias = wisdom) was the most important activity in which a person could engage.
Socrates lived his belief by questioning and logical argument; by examining and thinking. His examination of life influenced countless others to heed his words and to look at why they believed what they believed which caused them to live like they lived. I know at times that people will try to divorce their beliefs from their actions, but in actuality this is not possible. We do what we do and live like we live because we believe what we believe.
I once saw a comedy bit by George Carlin which he talked about the phrases we use. His point was if we ever stopped to think about, or examine, the words we were saying, we would realize how utterly ridiculous some of them are. Phrases like, "He really takes the cake." Where? "This country is going down the tubes." What tubes? Where are theses tubes people keep talking about? What George was illustrating was that we often say and do things without ever thinking about them. Without ever examining them. Without ever giving any real thought to what we believe and more importantly, why we believe it.
Socrates lived almost 2500 years ago and what he taught is still relevant today. I believe more relevant because of all of the self-imposed distractions we place in our lives. Radios, televisions, cell phones, tablets, Facebook, Twitter, Snap-Chat and all of the forms of social media that I am not even aware of. If we wanted to, we could distract ourselves to the point that we would never have to be alone in quiet to think about what we think and what we believe. The problem with that? If we don't take time, every once in a while, in quiet reflection and examination, we are in danger of just parroting whatever our conscious and sub-conscious minds take in. As George Carlin warned, "Garbage in, garbage out."
So rather than just repeating what others say, try to take a little time today to reflect / examine, in quiet, what is most important to you. Then go a bit deeper and look at why it is most important. You will be glad your did
To Ponder: "Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth." - Marcus Aurelius