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It is said that opinions are like noses: everyone has one. The opinions of those other people, however, have values to us, even if that value is nothing.

This is my opinion on how those values work. You, of course, will place some value on it, even if that value is nothing!

The Value of Other People’s Opinions

It is my opinion that many people connote "value" to mean "worth." You may take that for what it is worth. It may have some value to you.

The value of other people’s opinions work with physical laws, as does everything in the universe. If you accept that premise, then we can move on to opinions with "light value," opinions with "grave value," and opinions with "no value."

Light Valued Opinions

Opinions that are enlightening, uncommon, and profound would be opinions with light value. Where these opinions come from are relative to one’s perspective. To a child, learning "one plus one equals two" is enlightening, though we know it is fact, not opinion. Nonetheless, it illustrates the relativity of "light valued opinions."

Some opinions of light value relative to me are:

"Unjust suffering is redemptive," which was Dr. King’s opinion;

"An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind," which was Ghandi’s opinion;

"Fish and visitors stink after three days," which was Ben Franklin’s opinion.

Whether the source of a light valued opinion is an educator, a spiritual leader, or a co-worker, it is an opinion that sheds uncommon light to a subject. How much, or how little, value we individually place on light opinions, and which opinions we find our light in, will formulate our opinions of what is right and wrong. It will also formulate our individuality.

Grave Valued Opinions

If you read the word "grave," and imagine it to mean sad or final, then you are looking at it incorrectly. "Grave" is the root of the word "gravity," which is how it is meant for this purpose.

Opinions that amass into common thinking are "grave valued" opinions. To a child, a scolding and praise are both examples of grave valued opinions because they want us to like them, and they want to fit in. If we are to fit into the mass of society, we must place high value on opinions that amass sufficiently to have gravity.

Democracy is a concept wherein the gravest opinion (majority) rules. We tend to have common, grave valued opinions with our friends. Coaches not only give light valued opinions for growth, they coordinate the individuals on the team with grave value strategy, through opinion, of course!

The value we place on grave valued opinions, and the various degrees of gravity we give those opinions, will formulate our popularity.

No Valued Opinions

Opinions that we summarily dismiss, regardless of the worth of the opinion, are opinions of "no value." Though it may seem irrelevant to go past that, the opinions we place no value on are actually very important in determining who we are.

Since the value of the opinion is relative to our individual persepectives, an opinion that has "light value" or "grave value" to one person, may have "no value" to another. While that may seem harmless, and nobody’s business, our grave valued opinions often change when the opinion with "no value" to another is "thou shalt not kill."

Just as we should not mistake "value" for "worth," we should not mistake "no value" with "benign." The opinion upon which another places no value may be very dangerous to society, or individuals within that society.

On the other hand, we may place "no value" on the opinion of a preacher upon whose opinion others place "light value" with no physical harm to anyone. We may place "no value" on the "gravely valued" opinions of one group to associate with another group whose opinion we gravely value to be our friends. In those instances, the result may be benign, but only if we place grave concerns ahead of opinions on which we place no value.

Opinions on which we place no value formulate our responsibility.

Conclusion

To reiterate, how the values of other people’s opinions affect us is my opinion.

You may take it for what you feel it is worth. You will place some value on it, even if that value is nothing. I have no opinion on that!

© 2015 - Goldwing Tom
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