It starts by listening
Open-mindedness is a trait. At Ein GWLAD we believe that everyone should strive to embrace this trait. In this life, you will meet many people. People who have a different political outlook, speak a different language, culturally live differently or simply have different beliefs. We also believe – especially in today’s society – that many people are closed off to the idea of hearing what others have to say, especially those with different beliefs or views.
If someone has a different political view to you, you may be quick to call them wrong or ignore what they have to say. We think this is ignorant. Now we are not saying you have to wholly agree with us and change what you believe, but simply be open to listen. Some people are so quick to ignore others because they may appear to be differ from them.
But the big question is: “do I believe what I do is because I’ve been taught or been groomed to think that way, or do I base what I believe on listening and analysing what others have to say from different sources, and then I can make my own mind up using knowledge I’ve learned and by being unbiased?“
There has been a grooming, through the British Empire establishment state propaganda machine, and more so in recent times through the Anglo-American televised and broadcasted view of events. This is purely a western hemisphere interpretation of reality. Guard against it – it cultivates a closed mind.
So often we come across people who say “if it was good enough for my father and mother or grandfather and grandmother, then it’s good enough for me“. That is a very good indicator that you are encountering a closed mind individual. We often encounter this type of thing when we talk to people – mostly in the industrialised south – who despite irrefutable evidence of the incompetence of decades of Labour dominance, they still vote for that party out of a sense of tradition and duty, rather than by analysing exactly what that party is doing for them right now.
Being open-minded can be really tough sometimes. Most of us are brought up with a set of beliefs and values and, throughout our lives, we tend to surround ourselves with people who share the same values and beliefs. Therefore, it can be difficult when we’re faced with ideas that challenge our own and, although we may wish to be open-minded, we often struggle with the act of it from time to time.
How do you evaluate an ‘Open Mind’
We’d all like to say “I’m a fairly open-minded person, but, like most people, I do have some pretty strong views about specific topics and find it hard to sway from those opinions – no matter how others might try to persuade me“. Of course, some people like to fully believe that having strong beliefs can be a wonderful thing and they believe we should all stay true to what we believe in, but having strong beliefs doesn’t have to mean having a closed mind.
Though it can be tough to do sometimes, we’ve always found that when people open their minds, they reap a lot of rewarding benefits. There is much to be gained from opening the door to your mind and letting new ideas and beliefs flow in. Here are just a few of the benefits we’ve discovered when we’ve taken the time to view the world around us with an open mind…
The 7 Benefits of Being Open-Minded
1. Letting go of control.
When you open your mind, you free yourself from having to be in complete control of your thoughts. You allow yourself to experience new ideas and thoughts and you challenge the beliefs you currently have. It can be very liberating to look at the world through an open mind.
2. Experiencing changes.
Opening up your mind to new ideas allows you the opportunity to change what you think and how you view the world. Now, this doesn’t mean you necessarily will change your beliefs, but you have the option to – when you think with an open mind.
3. Making yourself vulnerable.
One of the scariest (and greatest) things about seeing the world through an open mind is making yourself vulnerable. In agreeing to have an open-minded view of the world, you’re admitting you don’t know everything and that there are possibilities you may not have considered. This vulnerability can be both unsettling but also hugely exhilarating.
4. Making mistakes.
Making mistakes doesn’t seem like it would be much of a benefit, but it truly is. When you open your mind and allow yourself to see things from others’ perspectives, you allow yourself not only to recognise potential mistakes you’ve made, but also to make new mistakes. It doesn’t sound like much fun, but it’s a great thing to fall and get back up again, after discovering your mistakes.
5. Strengthening yourself.
Open-mindedness provides a platform on which you can build – piling one idea on top of another. With an open mind you can learn about new things and you can use the new ideas to build on the old ideas. Everything you experience can add up, strengthening who you are and what you believe in. It’s very hard to build on experiences without an open mind.
6. Gaining confidence.
When you live with an open mind, you have a strong sense of self. You are not confined by your own beliefs, nor are you confined by the beliefs of others. For that reason, you are able to have and gain confidence as you learn more and more about the world around you. Open-mindedness helps you to learn and grow, strengthening your belief in yourself.
7. Being Honest and Truthful.
There is an honesty that comes with an open mind because being open-minded means admitting that you aren’t all-knowing. It means believing that whatever truth you find might always have more to it than you realise. This understanding creates an underlying sense of honesty that permeates the character of anyone who lives with an open mind.
Only One Sperm Gets In
Closed-minded people have trouble holding two thoughts simultaneously in their minds.
This reminds us of the memorable quote by Charlie Munger:
The human mind is a lot like the human egg, and the human egg has a shut-off device. When one sperm gets in, it shuts down so the next one can’t get in.
It’s our nature to close our minds around our favourite ideas, but this is not the ideal way to think and learn.
Open-minded people can take in the thoughts of others without losing their ability to think well — they can hold two or more conflicting concepts in their mind and go back and forth between them to assess their relative merits.
For some, being open-minded is easy; it comes as effortlessly as breathing. For others, having an open mind can be more of a challenge, something that they have to work on and make an effort to obtain. Whether or not you consider yourself to be open-minded, you can certainly see from the list above that there are great benefits to viewing life with an open mind. It’s not always an easy thing to do (believe us, most people struggle with this), but the effort to think openly and embrace new ideas will be worth it when you’re able to take part in the benefits that come from opening your mind.
Ein Gwlad’s Open Minded & Lateral Thinking Philosophy
At Ein Gwlad we pride ourselves on lateral thinking, that’s thinking outside the conventional ‘box’. This totally flies in the face of conventional party politics.
Whilst the others continue in the same old vein – hoping to make things change by using the same old policies and modus operandi of the past two centuries.
We by contrast, analyse what’s wrong with our country, decide what new policies would benefit Wales and her people, then we set about forming those policies, or adopting tried and tested policies that suits our unique country’s needs.
We harvest policies from any part of the political spectrum (that’s why we are called a ‘Syncretic’ party). This means that we create a bespoke portfolio of policies (as seen in our recently published manifesto) that are wholly designed for our country’s needs.
The point is, that we do not have ANY baggage in the form of single party doctrines, dogmas or ideology. Because we are open minded and lateral thinking, our only focus is on our country, and most importantly of all – gaining Independence and ensuring that WE as a nation govern ourselves – we are not too small, too poor or too stupid to do that. The time to behave as a subservient, colonial country ruled from elsewhere by a colonial power should be over in this 21st century.
With open minded followers and supporters, who accept change – through lateral thinking – we CAN and we WILL achieve this.
Recently retired Consultant Electronics Engineer, now living in Aberaeron Ceredigion. Educated at Bronant County Primary School, Tregaron County School and the University of Wales Institute of Science and Technology (Cardiff).
Involved in politics for nearly 50 years. Former vice president of Plaid Cymru – resigned in 2002. Currently the Chairman and a founding member of Ein Gwlad. Gwilym is also one of our permanent contributing editors at Ein Gwlad’s News Portal.