What is Independent Thinking?

What is Independent Thinking? -by Sharon Presley, Ph.D., Executive Director, RIT

The Oxford Unabridged Dictionary offers many definitions of independent, including “not depending on the authority of others” and “not dependent on others for forming an opinion.” Making up your own mind, in other words. But what does that really mean? Does it mean forming an opinion without input from others? No, of course not, otherwise we “reinvent the wheel” every time we make a decision. We all need relevant information and data on which to base our opinions. It’s the way that we seek information and how we apply it that makes us dependent or independent thinkers. If we uncritically accept whatever values or ideas we’ve been taught by parents, teachers or church, never questioning these ideas or asking ourselves if these ideas really make sense, then we are dependent thinkers (even if the ideas are true!). Continue reading

Health Care, Taxes, & Personal Liberty

I was discusted the other day when I opened my paycheck.  For many reasons, really.  Considering how hard I had worked the last few weeks, my wages were insignificant.  My company doesnt have the money to give raises this year.  I looked at my witholdings and felt that familiar burn of anger in my mind.  Not only had I been deprived of my income for clerical reasons, I realised how much money I had truly had taken from me.  I considered the many things that could have been done to benefit my family with the money in question.  I pondered why the government believes it has a better idea of could be done with that money.  Aren’t I the final decider on how best to run my houshold.  I realised that the government doesnt think so.  Continue reading