Change is part of life, and what was acceptable at one point in time, is not necessarily acceptable at another. And while this can be a sign of growth, it can also be a sign that opinions have changed and therefore mean very little in terms of social evolution.
The fact that women are gradually gaining equal rights is a not only a sign of change, it also shows that growth is taking place in today’s society. Another example of change is seen in how many people have tattoos. But even though this is an example of change, it doesn’t necessarily mean that this is a sign of growth.
It could be said that it shows that people are more accepting and more open. And based on how people viewed tattoos before, this would be partly true. However, just because someone has a tattoo, it doesn’t therefore mean that they are more open minded or accepting that someone who hasn’t got any.
So while there are examples of change that show growth and examples that don’t show growth, there are also examples that can show a bit of both. This means that it will all depend on how one looks at the example. Assumptions fit into the area that is neither black nor white.
And when it comes to making assumptions, most people will have heard the quote by Oscar Wilde - “When you assume, you make an ass out of u and me’’. This quote has been given a certain amount of exposure in recent years and this has played a part in people coming to the conclusion that assumptions are ‘bad’.
Clearly this is not the only reason; with their being other factors involved. It is also not uncommon to see assumptions being labelled as ‘bad’ in the world of self development and ‘spirituality’. This outlook can also be found in some areas of the business world and so it is not limited to one area of life.
If one constantly makes assumptions in life and doesn’t allow themselves to experience something first hand, they are going to make life harder than it needs to be. And instead of one being able to embrace life, they are going to be too busy projecting their own ideas onto life.
And this is going to affect their life in all kinds of ways. It will have short terms consequences as well as long terms consequences. Let’s say that someone has a pattern of always assuming the worst; if they were to change this outlook their life is inevitably going to improve.
When it comes to making a decision in life and this could be a business decision or just relate to where one is going to go on holiday, it will be important for them to attain the right information. If one doesn’t do this, it could cause them to lose a potential client or to employ the wrong person. Or one might end up going to the wrong destination and taking the wrong clothes for instance.
So the fact that people have become more aware of how destructive assumptions can be is a sign of change and growth. And as assumptions can be dangerous, it would be easy to say that one should avoid them completely.
But while it might sound like the right thing to do, it wouldn’t be practical. It is often seen as ‘spiritual’ not to make assumptions or to judge, amongst other things. On paper this can sound like a great idea and as something that we should all aspire too.
However, while on this planet, one has a physical body that needs to be protected. And if one was to blindly follow these rules and not make assumptions or judge, they wouldn’t be alive for very long.
It as if these rules are made up without any consideration of the physical needs that human beings have and are purely focused on the part of them that is not physical and therefore doesn’t need any kind of protection.
Whether one feels the need to make an assumption or a judgement, it is coming from that part of them that is focused on their survival and nothing else. Making assumptions is then something one does as a way to ensure their survival.
If this ability was completely removed, ones time on this earth would soon come to an end. For example, if a car is driving towards someone and they assume that it is going to run them over if they don’t move over, it could be what keeps them alive. It is then not a ‘bad’ thing; it is a ‘good’ thing.
This assumption will be made without one having to think too much and in situations like these, it is not going to create problems. What will create problems is if one is always reactive and is not utilising their ability to think.
If they were to use their intellect, instead of letting their survival instincts and conditioning take over, one would be able to put their assumptions to one side and to open their mind to what is taking place.
It is then not about stopping oneself from making assumptions or labelling them as bad, it is about being aware of how this part of oneself works. And if one has a pattern of making assumptions in a certain area, it might mean that they have something that needs to be processed within them.
Because even though making assumptions is part of one’s survival instincts and therefore can’t be removed, this part can be influenced by trauma. And all the time this trauma has not been processed, one will continue to make the same assumptions.
One might need to seek the assistance of a therapist or a healer in order to let go of these assumptions.
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.