In the gray cloudy Saturday morning, I sit down with Elliot Ng, and other friends in Meeting Place: Starbucks at Jinyan Road, Pudong for some free chat. For some reason, we talked about contrast of people’s belief and the reality of this world.
“We Can Change”
To better understand the different, I found by adding “We Think …” to whatever statement twist the meaning a lot. Even more interestingly, adding “We thought …” to any statement is even more clear about the difference.
We talked about Obama’s slogan: “We can Change.” By adding “We Think”, it becomes
We think we can Change
By adding “We thought”, it becomes
We thought we can change
(No offense at all. I am not joking about the slogan itself at all. Using it is just because it is so famous and widely spread out.)
The idea is, by adding something like that helps us to really understand the difference between what we believe and the reality, and face the fact that we don’t want to admit: What we think is not always what the reality is.
“Is this what they told you?”
Another interesting story is about how to distinguish what we were told and the reality.
Long time ago, when our close friend Clair left Shanghai for a small town in France to join the nuclear power station, we had a dinner to say good bye to her. Naturally, we worried about the safety to work in a nuclear station.
We asked: “Is it safe there?”
Clair answered with full confidence: “No worry at all. The radiation level in the nuclear plant is less than 1% of a normal X-ray check. Blah blah…”
Someone looked at her with full sympathy and asked: “Is this what they told you?”
Pretty embarrassingly, Clair admitted that this was what she was told…
I am not saying nuclear plant is not safe at all. The point is, sometimes, by asking “Is this what we were told?” to many questions helps us to understand the difference between the information we get, and the difference of the reality. Although many times, the two fit each other, most of the time, they don’t, at least not in full.
Be Sensitive to What We Think, and What We Were Told
What we think comes from what we see, and what we were told. What we see or touch or smell is also just what we were shown (by people. or by the nature). Be careful to use our perception and the reality.