Routine check of my beliefs


Ask yourself whether you’ll still do X, or worry about what Y thinks of you, if you knew you won’t be alive in five years’ time. Then ask the same question about three years, two years, one year …

* * *

Every now and then I have to do a quick check for what I believe in.

Answer: I believe in reason, and being reasonable. And I believe in Civilisation. I believe that people can get along better with each other, and that more people will be able to lead happier lives and perhaps get more done with their lives if more people worked together.

This most recent spot check was done on the sidewalk near a busy intersection in Kaohsiung as I was walking back from where I buy dinner on Wednesday evenings. For the umpteenth time in recent weeks I saw how motorists kept driving even though they could see they were going to get caught by the red light. Of course they ended up, along with a dozen or more other vehicles in the middle of the intersection when the traffic had to start moving in the other direction – and when pedestrians had to start crossing the road.

“Imagine what the world will be like if people are more reasonable,” I murmured in the direction of a motorist who, as could be expected, sat there as stiff as a zombie, looking straight ahead.