“Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mould, but let God re-mould your minds from within...”
Romans 12:2

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Really? Truly?! About What, Anyway?

Like-mindedness.

What is it? “Sharing similar opinions,” says the dictionary.

It’s a good feeling.  Harmony seems to prevail.  You can be comfortable in such company.  Yeah… peace and goodwill!

You may even feel something of a “missionary” zeal coming on, so that you can extend your circle of like-minded friends.  Get rid of the square pegs, and those who seem to want to throw spanners in the works.  You know, rock the boat!

“Cloning?” someone might whisper.  “Can’t have that!  How would you feel if someone was trying to do it to you?  Practising the gentle arts of persuasion.”

Is that wrong?  To try and change people’s minds.  To try and get them to think like you do?

Provided you can exercise freedom of choice, no, it’s not.  It’s happening all the time in a myriad of different ways.  Even on this website!! In fact, world-wide, astronomical sums of money are budgeted each year for this purpose.  Advertising and propaganda.

I’m sure we all know this, but … it is nice to be like-minded… a wistful sigh escapes the lips.  But hold it!  Spend a bit of time trying to picture in your mind’s eye, the sorts of people, organizations, interests, and motives behind these sighs and I’m sure it won’t be long before there is a reaction.  Sometimes quite a vehement one!

We simply do not want to be told what to do!  We don’t want our lifestyles threatened.  We have rights and freedoms and our opinions are as good as anyone else’s – if not better.  Unless of course, you want others to control your life, and take care of the responsibilities that are becoming too burdensome in this complex world.

I am going to ask a “million dollar” question, which no doubt has been asked countless times in the past.  But in asking it, I’m going to suggest that instead of trying to find an answer that fits others, we answer it for ourselves.

“What does it take to convince me that I am right in my present ‘position’, or that I may need to make changes?”

The following supplementary questions may also need to be asked:

Is the printed word sufficient – a book, a magazine article, etc?

Is the “voice” on the radio, an audio tape, or a telephone conversation sufficient?

Do I need tangible evidence, either on its own, or in addition to the two already mentioned?

Do I require my human sources to be classified as “experts” and suitably “qualified” before I will consider what they offer?

Am I more likely to be convinced by people in the “flesh” exercising their many “charms”?

Will I be swayed by emotionalism – especially where fear is involved?

Would I resist force or some form of pressure, if it was used, or would I automatically be convinced that I should comply?

Would my convincing depend on having others to “keep me company” or would I (am I) strong enough to stand alone if need be?

How important is “trust” in someone, or something?  Could an inner “knowing” that the choice made was right, be more important than hearsay and news media reporting?

Is there consistency across all areas of lifestyle in applying the “bottom line” convictions which will not be compromised under any circumstances?

Having decided on our don’ts and won’ts, plus any other factors and checked it all out on ourselves, let’s come back to the original question: “What does it take to convince me…”?

Because we’re all unique individuals, if we were to compare our lists, it is very unlikely we would find any two exactly the same especially when explanations and qualifications were also considered.

There is no guaranteed formula that will cause everyone to be convinced, one way or another, as to what positions will be taken on the many issues of life.  That opens up the way for making excuses

Like it or not, if you are not convinced on an issue you basically lose by default.  Sitting on the fence is a precarious position, and sooner or later someone else will do the convincing for you.

Being convinced will determine where you will fit and how like-minded you will be as you mix with other people.  Being convinced means you are declaring your position as to which side you are on.

Is there any other option if you can’t make up your mind, or don’t want to?  Will indifference, complacency or deferment, release you from the responsibility of being convinced?

The world’s systems simply squeeze you into the moulds that will produce citizens of the right shape.  It may take time, but the success rate is high.  And hey presto, you will have been “convinced”.

Cloned?

Well… maybe not quite … maybe the word shouldn’t even be suggested.  Maybe it’s a step towards that euphoric like-mindedness that should be so … so conducive to harmony, peace and goodwill, and that will surely lead to compliance and a wonderful humanistic welfare society orchestrated by politicians and governmental agencies, and … and everything in the garden will be lovely and we will all live happily ever after.

On this website we identify issues which we reckon are important.  What will it take to convince you?

How will you convince others?

If there is any like-mindedness what will that lead to?

Meaningful action, or procrastination?

Surrender?

For people like us, who publish books, operate websites, spend hours on the telephone, use every opportunity that comes along to talk to people, and in whatever other way we can think of, “help” where help is needed, the question is very pertinent:

What more can you do to convince people?

Convincing should lead to conviction.

Without solid conviction, there’s not going to be the fruits of further convincing!

Let’s face it, the real convincing takes place inside you and inside me.  We just have to make sure that we expose ourselves to the elements – the “cement” – that makes the mix set like concrete.  To be ready with our “contributions” as the opportunities arise.  Someone out there may be waiting for it, unbeknown to us.  Often it will be “out of the mould”, and a “being convinced” that will be BEYOND CONFORMITY.  You will be convinced in a way that will set you at odds with the majority.  But the question is still there!

WHAT … WILL … IT … TAKE … TO … PUT … YOU … INTO … THAT … CATEGORY … OF … COMMITMENT?