Say goodbye to stereotypes-woodmam

Removing the "tinted glasses" - a farewell to stereotypes

  There is a story in "Lie Zi - Say Fu".

  An old man in the countryside had lost an axe and could not find it. He thought it must have been stolen by his neighbour's son. He went to look at the boy's face and attitude and found something suspicious: every word and action of the boy looked as if he had stolen the axe. He concluded that the boy must have stolen it, and that I had expected him to have bad intentions. Later, when the old man went to gather firewood, he found his lost axe in the valley and remembered that he had forgotten to bring it home with him when he was gathering firewood. When he got home, he watched the boy again, and sure enough, the boy did not act or speak as if he had stolen the axe. Then the old man said, "Yes, what family doesn't have a small axe? He would never do such a thing."

  Why did the man who lost the axe initially conclude that "every word and action looked like he had stolen an axe"? It was mainly because he had formed an undeserved opinion in his mind before he made his covert observation of the neighbour's child. This perception was so dominant in his mind that the axe thief's powers of observation were so affected that he had the wrong impression. This story teaches us not to create preconceptions in our minds before we have observed something in order to minimise illusions in our observations. This will help us to receive new information, study new problems and understand new things.

  The observer must not, at any time, anywhere or under any circumstances, observe things with preconceptions. The result is that people who have preconceptions tend to be stubborn and absorb what is to their "taste", but not vice versa.

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