Monday, July 11, 2011

Wishful thinking of the irrational

We humans tend to tone out things that induce anxiety, or basically anything that cause us to have negative feelings. It often brings us to see only what we want to see.

Last night as I was driving home from work, it was thundering and lightning. This made me think about the chances of a person to get struck by lightning. The odds are about 1 in 300,000. This led me to think about what my dad always told me when I wanted him to buy me powerball tickets at 7/11 when I was a kid. He always told me there was a greater chance of getting struck by lightning than ever winning the lottery. The odds of winning the jackpot is about 200,000,000.... That's pretty slim. So everytime I want to gamble like that I tell myself "would you place a bet with someone that you will get struck by lightning the next time it storms out?" No. Of course not, because we do not wish to get struck by lightning. It's funny how our brains work sometimes, though.

The point I am getting at with this blog is leaning towards religion. These lottery ticket junkies and christians (as well as many other groups of theists) all have the same thing in common. Wishful thinking and ignorance of rationality. They all ignore the rational side of things because they simply don't want to see the negative connotations. People are believing what they want to believe. If they were to just stop and think about how irrational they are being, think about the big picture, they would see a little more clearly. It's okay to have optimism, it's okay to have some hope and faith that things will work out in their favor, but don't these people ever consider that they are wasting their time and or money? There are many energies wasted into something that doesn't matter, there is lots of money wasted into something that doesn't matter. Instead of waiting around for something to happen that you wishfully think will happen, make your own luck. Praying when you are scared, buying a lottery ticket when you are hurting for money, it may help ease the anxiety temporarily, but what are you really gaining? What are you really learning from yourself? You are relying on something that is invisible, and may not be there. These are times when you need to learn to be strong, rise above the ashes and rely on things you can see with your own two eyes, rely on yourself, rely on your family. Make your life happen, not by wishful thinking, but using what you see right in front of you.
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