How to Raise Your Ideas Above Society
The great minds of the past were able to elevate their ideas above society to bring about more knowledge. Find out two traits that can help you do this.
Knowledge is the most scarce good, and in a world where it is easily accessible, it is even worse. It sounds counterintuitive, but it is true.
I am sure we have all used Google as our doctor at one point. We may have been experiencing a bit of pain or found a weird rash on our skin. However, instead of going straight to the doctor, we want to self diagnose. The problem is, we have access to too much of it.
After doing a short search on Google, you will get a tonne of articles and “doctors” telling you what your problem is. They will even take you through step-by-step guides to get you feeling well again. Before you know it, you will have to sift through all of this “knowledge” to get to the right one.
True knowledge is becoming hard to come by. And in an age that promotes sharing beliefs and opinions, it is even harder to determine the facts.
If you feel the call to write and share your ideas with the masses, you should treat it as a privilege. Writers that came before us saw their writing as a means to educate society.
So, how did the great writers in the past influence so many through their ideas? In this article, I seek to explore two reasons as to how they were able to elevate their ideas above the rest. After all, it is through the elevation of our ideas that we can find new knowledge.
They Valued Questions Over Answers
The great writer and philosopher Voltaire is quoted saying:
“Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers.”
In this short quote, we see the idea that questions are more valuable than the answers we find. Of course, knowledge is the answer to our questions, but questions are the opportunity to expand our knowledge.
We have become accustomed to absorbing tonnes of information without a second thought. Our devices help us sift through a tonne of information through their algorithms. In the space of 15 minutes, you could have consumed a tonne of knowledge without ever questioning it.
I have always found it interesting to ask someone what further questions they have after reading a book. They tend to stare at me and fumble over their words as they try to answer. Unfortunately, many are happy to read and consume without ever trying to elevate their knowledge past what they have seen.
It is more comfortable to accept what someone else is telling you without asking anything. We even see it in schools as many teachers struggle to engage their students. People are more than happy to sit down and consume rather than question and elevate.
To elevate your ideas above society, you must value questions over answers. In doing so, two things happen. The first is that you pay more attention to the information being fed to you. If you are concerned with asking questions, you will need to understand the knowledge being presented. By doing this, you are developing your listening and critical thinking skills.
The second is that you stretch yourself to explore things people do not have the answers to. Through this, you journey your own path and build a set of unique ideas.
So, whether you are a writer, businessman or teacher, begin valuing questions. It is here great ideas will be found.
They Are Concerned About Ultimate Ends
One of the things that are often overlooked is their passion for ultimate ends. By ultimate ends, I mean the final goal or destination of something.
An example of this is a piece of clothing. When manufactured, many would argue that the end of that clothing is to be worn by someone. If it were not, then it would go to waste. However, it can also be argued that the end of the clothing is the waste bin.
After all, the person who brought it may grow out of it or never wear it after a certain amount of time. It is through being concerned with the ultimate ends of things that force us to think outside the box for solutions.
One of my favourite quotes is in the book the body politic by Jean-Jacques Rousseau. It is here he states:
“Man is born free, but everywhere he is in chains.”
What a stunning conclusion that is. But it is through the desire to find the ultimate end of government and politics that he comes to such a radical idea.
In the very same book, he states:
“No true Democracy has ever existed, nor ever will exist.”
These ideas do not just pop into people’s heads. Instead, it is through dedication and persistence to produce ideas that are concerned with the ultimate end of things.
So, whatever field you find yourself in, always question the ultimate end of your goals. Think about what value it brings to society and how the problem you are trying to tackle will benefit the future generation. It is through being concerned with this you will find that your ideas become more meaningful and impactful.
Elevating your ideas above the rest is difficult, and that is why only a few can do it. However, by using these two techniques, you can get a little closer to doing it.
By questioning things and being concerned with the ultimate, you can find ideas that elevate yourself and others.
So, take the courage to start forming questions after you consume knowledge. Become concerned with the ultimate end rather than temporal solutions. It is here you can start pursuing greater ideas.
I am a Visionary and Writer who seeks to enrich society by challenging how we do business today to lead to a world of better leaders and opportunities tomorrow.