I like the expression ‘common sense’. It says two things:
- We have it in common – it’s a shared knowing.
- It’s about sense, which is a word used for our awareness, not our head-centred ideas or rules.
What I find sad is that we’re generally not either taught or encouraged to use it or develop it.
I think the confusion and frustration about our ‘rules and guidelines’ for the pandemic illustrates this perfectly. Our common sense tells us that they don’t make sense. For example, if it’s not ok to be in our homes with more than a certain number of friends and family, why is it ok for us to be in a store with many more strangers?
There is an assumption that we don’t use our common sense written into all the guidance we’ve been given. Either they assume we have none, or they assume we won’t use it to question the rules.
And this is not the only way in which our common sense is ignored or repressed, by any stretch of the imagination. We all know we’re not robots, that we have a natural flow to our energy, and it isn’t consistent. Yet we are taught to work past this knowing and to be consistently busy and productive, resulting in burn-out for many people. (By the way, burn-out as an expression comes from machines that are pushed beyond their capacity – a telling metaphor).
Over the years, we learn how to habitually ignore our common sense. We stop listening to the inner voice that says, ‘This is not right.’ And each time we do this, we are repressing our own wisdom.
So come on, let’s start encouraging our own common sense instead. Begin to hear the ‘this is not right’, and take notice of it, act on it, whenever we feel we can. And let’s encourage others to follow this common sense as well. Talk about it. challenge the nonsense. Open the conversations about our knowing, our shared sense of right and wrong.
Maybe then we would have governments we could respect, better relationships with others, and enjoy our lives more.