If we agree that opinions are conclusions based on available information, we may still differ on the interpretation of that information. Every bit of data is subject to change affecting the foundation of any conclusion. Have you noticed everyone forms opinions?
After thinking about that for a while, I began to try to understand it better. You might wonder what this subject has to do with the huge Native Pecan Tree. There it is in the pasture – tall, full and grand in every way. To me, that tree is a symbol of something I believe – influence, with or without leadership, carries a responsibility. It has thrived for over one-hundred years in a beneficial relationship with everything around it – providing shade for the livestock, nuts for the wildlife, food for travelers that found it a suitable stop for wagons on the Chisholm Trail. I saw remnants of the last stagecoach station – planks of wood, handmade nails, broken pieces of glass, chards of pottery. I regret I missed the opportunity to save the building.
The power of opinion can be enlightenment or influence, which leads to the fact influence can be beneficial or destructive. In circular thinking, opinions are complex to arrive at a consensus of peace – where they can serve a logical purpose for the most people, and not simply be a push for preferences.
When we hold opinions in our hearts and minds, we are humanely obligated to also carry the burden of consequences for their influence. We can be strong, steady, and bend with the wind of adjustments as information changes, giving support to the symbols in our lives of what it means to co-exist and thrive, be a leader, respect, protect and cherish. I wonder just how many people have been affected over time by my opinions – did I help or hurt the majority of them?