​Everyone Is An Idiot And You Can Be One, Too
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Politics and Activism

​Everyone Is An Idiot And You Can Be One, Too

If you want to do something incredible, then why are you doing what everyone else is?

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​Everyone Is An Idiot And You Can Be One, Too
Flickr/Dvpfagan

The president is an idiot… er, not just that one. Obama, too. Lincoln, Washington, Hoover, definitely Taft, and don't forget Roosevelt. Your parents? Idiots! You, too, are an idiot! Your lovely grandmother (rest her soul)? I’ll give you three guesses.

As much as we pretend not to be, we’re all just a bunch of idiots. We run around in the dark, searching desperately for a light switch that doesn’t exist. We are born clueless and for a couple decades or so afterward, we begin pretending that we no longer are. What have we done? A few books down, a classroom or two, even that one essay that got an A+. Have you figured out the world? Does the vast expanse of society, build from nothing more than bloody collisions and half-broken agreements, make sense to you?

We can’t begin to understand everything around us. There isn’t nearly enough time. We do our best - making educated guesses or blaming those around us. Worst of all, we find ourselves deferring to those people who have it all figured out. Politicians, elite business people, even that guy in class who just talks loud.

“They must know what’s right. Their judgment is better than mine. They understand what I don’t. They’re smarter, stronger, quicker, more creative, BETTER.”

Shut up, idiot. Accept that the world is a complicated mess that is ultimately unknowable. Find yourself seeing the places where we fill in the gaps. They’re usually called laws, morals, careers, universities, relationships, or entertainment. They float around you, always. These are the things that ground us. They make the world digestible and familiar. It is soothing to the stomach when we pretend that they are innate or natural. ‘Just the way it is,’ is a personal favorite.

You constantly subscribe to a litany of systems created by people pretending that they have the answers. This is no philippic against religion, government, and colleges. It’s only a suggestion that you appreciate that institutions, which feel deeply ingrained in the fabric of our world, are little more than fragile looking glasses which rest on the end of your nose. They sum to form your perspective; they are everything that you know. Perhaps you could feel them creep into your subconscious as you’re weaned off of your curious innocence. ‘What if’ is replaced by ‘what is.’

Ask a class of kindergarteners if anyone is an artist and you’ll be treated to a roomful of hands. Ask a thousand people on the street and you may be lucky enough to hear about that smelly guy’s podcast discussing the French New Wave.

We put our faith in systems made up of people as clueless as us. We allow ourselves to become acculturated to these systems: governments, businesses, every part of the life we expect to live. The knowledge that those preconceived notions aren’t preconceived at all is itchy. They are learned. Our world was built by idiots and it is taught to us by idiots. Everyone is just trying to figure it out. We like to forget that fact; it feels nice when you do.

Don’t feel nice. That is the sickening creep of normality. That lack of anxiety is the feeling as you drop deeper into the quicksand, blindly accepting the choices of others… others who do not know you, who do not understand you, and who are just as blind as you are.

Choose. Bend these systems to your will. Understand that you live your life dancing to the tune of songwriters... who are idiots! Step away from the music. Don’t stop being an idiot. Embrace your confusion! No one can figure out what the hell to do on this little blue rock in space. Spend your life discovering your definition of fulfillment, not anyone else’s.

Thrive in chaos. Wink and smile when you see people feigning confidence; they are too afraid to even admit their fear. Keep your eyes peeled for the structures you live in and when you find that they’ve become your prison, break down the walls. Don’t tell anyone, but the truth is that those walls were never truly there in the first place.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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