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10 March, 2009

Beliefs: The Unusual

Q: Tell me about a belief, idea, or position that you think of as being either unique to you, or not held by many people.

I suspected that there are a lot of things that many people believe. Of course, these would be categorized into buckets according to certain classifications: religious versus non-religious, democrat versus republican, male versus female, etc. So, I thought it might be interesting to find out what beliefs are outside the norm. The goal was to get people challenging themselves to tell you something that they think is unique to them. The problem with such a question is that I pretty much opened myself wide to mockery and silliness.

The responses were, at best, cryptic:

"Economics and romance are intimately related"

"Consciousness moves through the universe like radio waves... if I ever existed, I always exist"

"There are purple slugs on Pluto"

"Costco is the devil"

"Prostitution should be legalized" (written by a woman)

I think the responses may reflect a few things. It might be difficult for some people to identify those beliefs that are unique. They are probably subtle things that govern how people navigate their day-to-day activities, and they might even be things that people are not particularly comfortable discussing. I was hoping to get people to reveal things that they would not normally reveal to others. But it was a bit absurd of me (perhaps one of my unique beliefs!) to think that people are generally happy to talk about their sensitive beliefs and ideas.

The general themes could be whittled down to:  "The taboo", "The surreal", "The absurd".

I don't know that this handful of responses really reflects the population, or that they were particularly deeply thought out (with a couple of exceptions). The thing I wonder is do we all have beliefs that are somewhat unique to us? Or do we need to really scrape to think of something, and probably pick something a little bit silly, and not essential or core to our daily actions? Or am I being judgmental? Maybe these items were core to the day-to-day actions of those who wrote them. Or is my sample just too small?

I am not sure if this was a good question or not, because I don't know that people will tell Mick Feeble what they believe that nobody else believes.

It occurs to me, when this is all done, that I will have to go back and answer all of these questions for you, my readers. Because it only seems fair.

And I believe you will listen...

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