Facing irrationality rationally

(Featured Image Source: AlexBatty.org)

For most of my life I have watched some of the things that people do and wondered out loud “Were they dropped on their head as a child?”

You know who I mean:

The man who regularly cheats on his wife, but then is furious when she strays.

The person who embezzles and then blames the one who discovers the fraud for ruining his life.

The thief who orders the bank manager at gunpoint to go into the safe and bring him all “his” money.

arguing2The bully who repeatedly tells his victims “you made me do this, it’s all your fault”.    

The religious fanatic who, in the name of God, commits a myriad of atrocities.

And politics… oh my, where do we begin?

I’ve had many private soliloquies over the years of how I would rationally discuss each situation, pointing out what must be so painfully obvious to any sane person.

It was inconceivable to me that I wouldn’t win the argument, and anyone who witnessed it would find me to be the reasonable, rational point of view.

For a while I watched some news programs that attempted to do just that, have a debate on issues with both sides represented. But I can’t think of any where one side said something like “you know, that is a good point. I may just have to do some deeper digging to find out more”.

I guess that would be too rational, right?

Finally, I stopped watching and moved on to other things.

The trouble is, those arguing over issues didn’t. They’re still hard at it.

It’s made me think a lot about just what is the solution to such irrational discord.


One thing that has shed some light on my question was discovering in my scripture study that irrational thought and behavior is often a result of sin.

Wow.                                                                    (Source: LDS Media Library)

So much for being dropped on their head as a child.

I wonder, though, if that would have been a preferable cause?

At any rate, it seemed to simplify the course of action, at least in my mind.

I’ve been learning for a long time how to combat sin.

Arguing, demeaning, logically proving, bombing, excessive punishments, anger, dismissiveness, ostracism, etc. have never really helped overcome a broken soul.

It may keep them quiet for a time, or begrudgingly obedient in the short term, but it rarely affects lasting change.

That has to come from within.

Here’s the hard truth: There will always be some people who are idiots.

There will always be someone who is angry with you, or discriminatory against you, or dishonest with you, or just downright mean.

It would seem that they are pretty fond of the mud they are mired in and have made it their mission in life to pull as many in with them as they can.

Sound like anyone else we are familiar with?

It’s unfair, but it’s the way that it is.


(Source: AlexBatty.org)

We knew it would be this way when we chose as we did before we were born.

Our best bet in fighting this discord would be to first make sure we have bathed ourselves and removed all the accumulated mud.

Kind of making sure that we are getting rid of our own irrationality.

holding hands

That puts us in a position on firm ground where we can then turn around and extend a hand to help the next person who’s looking for more out of life than a mudslinging contest.

Don’t they deserve a trip to the showers too?

After all, if you think about it, it’s only rational.


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