How would you know you are truly an independent thinker?

We all grew up being taught by the environment around us. Our parents, our friends, even by society in general. We are told, "this is right" and "this is wrong."

Or, "believe in this God" or "don't believe in this God."

Many of us grow up swearing up and down that we are our own masters, that our thought processes are of our own choice. But... can we REALLY say that? After all, let's say a person grew up eating nothing but Spaghetti his whole life, that's all he knows, he has never been introduced to any other type of food. Naturally, when asked, he is going to say Spaghetti is the best kind of food ever created.

So, where do we draw the line? What is a true, distinguishing feature of a person who TRULY thinks for themselves? If a person were to sit down and say, "I truly, geninely like ______, and it isn't because someone taught it to me, I actually, genuinely like this because I have discovered it for myself."


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Most Helpful Guy

  • People who are truly independent question what they were taught, and may even go against it once their own opinions form.

    I can say I am from life experiences. I grew up to think as such: God is real and all around me, I MUST only date other black people, I am a straight girl, I am not a tomboy, homosexuality is not real, I like these sports, these teams, and those players, I play with dolls, I eat like a lady, I talk like a lady, all black people can cook and sing gospel, I should go to church, I am female and therefor need to know how to cook and clean, white people can't cook to save their lives, I speak when spoken to, I fight back if hit, and I listen to adults no questions asked.

    But over time I grew to think this way: God may be real but I don't give a shit, I date whoever the hell I want to but I don't prefer black women (probably because they were stomped into my head as the superior race of women), I am a butch lesbian as female but otherwise a transsexual and a straight man, homosexuality exists, I like track and soccer not basketball and football and don't give a fuck about players, I play with instruments and PS3 or PS4 remotes, I eat like I have sense, I speak my mind, not all black people can cook and sing gospel, I go to church by force, I am MALE and can cook to survive, my white friends cook better than me, I speak both when spoken to, in conversation, and whenever the hell I want to/the situation calls for it, I am passive aggressive but will knock a mf out if you hit a female as well as my brothers, my friends, my family, and myself, and I listen to those who respect me fuck your status in my life.

    Now most of that is different compared to how I was raised over the course of 18 years. I have grown to have significantly different beliefs, attitudes on life, and simply have changes and grown up to be a free-thinker. I am not the doctor my family wanted, I am a vet who writes stories. I am not gonna be someones wife but someones husband. And I do NOT want 10 damn kids but maybe 3 or 4 (10 cause my family says that's "only natural").

    So sorry for the life story, but the line is drawn when a person begins to truly sit down and have a deep 1-on-1 with themselves and think about everything they were taught to believe in and why it is THEY believe in it. They need to question it, think about it, and challenge it a bit before finally knowing what it is they believe in as a person.

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What Girls Said 3

  • Question themselves. Dare to ask the necessary questions. Why are they doing it? Are they doing it because everyone's doing it or because its drummed inside their psyche because of the bossy bitches who decides to dictate to others, this is the way to think because they said so. It starts at an early age when we are bombarded with instructions from teachers and parents...

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  • an independent thinker is willing to question their thoughts and others thoughts is not afraid to go against the flow and is willing to stand up for what they believe in.

    all of our thinking is part of other peoples thinking. the independent view is really just about standing behind your thinking and being skeptical of even your own thinking and standing up for it even in front of adversity.

    not striving towards but being willing to have unpopular views:)

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    • and questioning and thinking analytically about everyone--rather than trusting and relying upon sentiment and anecdote and persuasive personalities. doing your own homework so to speak.,

  • we aren't parrots, we can make decisions based on past experiences and exposure.

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What Guys Said 8

  • Luckily, your views are not a direct copy of what you were told, it is based on your accumulated knowledge. Of course, religious people prefer to reject any knowledge that is contradicting what they had known, because apparently learning something new is difficult. With the Internet, it is easy to gather knowledge that is not directly influenced by your peers. You are not dependent on the church to tell you what *is* and what *isn't*.

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  • I think our brain processes all the influences and makes a free informed choice

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  • Anyone who thinks for themselves is majorly disliked, disagreed with, downcast, and left to rot on their own. They also tend to be less involved or invoked by common activities and local happenstances because they've got better things to do.

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  • You must question what you believe all the time with new experiences and facts. Otherwise you do not really progress in you learning or thought process.

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  • This is one of the best questions I've ever read.

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  • for my opinion, once we have never discover such a truth-----We all grew up being taught by the environment around us, we are the child of environment. while it has disappear suddenly when we have realised it

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  • If you ask the spaghetti kid that question he probably wouldn't say that. You already implied that there are other foods since you said "kind" so he'd be curious and ask.
    Anyway. True independence? No. There's bound to be someone who has the same idea as you. There is a small percentage of people who think for themselves but most don't and they'd never realise. Everyone wants to believe that they're special

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  • It's not a problem to borrow attitudes from other people, there's nothing wrong with being dependent

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    • Yeah, but there's a difference between saying:

      1 - "I will borrow this attitude, I like this attitude, it really suits me."

      and

      2 - "Use this attitude, and don't question it. This will be your attitude from now on and you will like it."

      Might be a bad analogy but, know what I'm sayin'?

    • In the case of 1 they are an indepedent. In the case of 2 they are not. So I would say as long as they are doing 1 they are indepedent

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