It must be well over three decades that this author last visited the Science Museum in South Kensington, London. But what is distinctly recalled is that at some point after the entrance there used to be on the left a bookshelf of sorts with works of many famous people.
And, believe it or not, on one visit I counted something like 25 books by our late clever Maltese mind, Prof Edward Debono, father of propagating thinking as an important discipline for humanity. And one of those books which I browsed had this explanation about the right and bad ways of linking thinking with speaking:
The bad way is to conceptualise and then promptly give the thought the shortest route out possible from brain to tongue/mouth, i.e. straight down via eyes, nose, and mouth. The correct way is to conceptualise, up there in that spaghetti-like maze sometimes called the brain, and then give the result the longer way out i.e. backwards, slowly down, almost towards the nape of the neck, and then round to the mouth at the front. It is the latter that produces reasoned speaking, with the former producing close to constant drivel.
Is it because so many in our society show constant signs of their sheer inability to think in the right way – i.e. if they think at all – that we daily see demonstrations of incorrectness, or pronouncements of same?
For example this week: the Chamber of Commerce describing taxes as part of “costs”. Taxes are a liability that arises after costs will have been incurred, deducted from incomes/sales, and taxable profit ensuing; which then becomes the subject of various allocations, the first of which are in fact taxes as due under law.
To confuse “costs” with “operating costs”, more correctly (i.e. to avoid confusing minds) to be termed as overheads, is here too a sign of incorrect thinking methodology.
More glaring examples of deficient thinking in our society are constantly around us. Politicians not realizing that many voters see through them like a sieve when they go to visit intelligent voters only at around election times. Ministers who think that they can fob off justified complainers simply by getting some smooth talker from their secretariat to answer emails, or give them a brief phone call that remains miles away from tangible solutions to voters’ laments. Banks who commit either blatant errors or disservice and then think that their customer will always simply accept and lump up their supposed explanation. Businesses who will not admit that a product has fallen far short of what it was advertised as providing by way of service.
All the time these and others get themselves into such “soups” simply because they would never have stopped to think that their actions, or inactions, should first have been preceded by a much longer periods of thinking about what is about to be done. The reality out there is that on the receiving end of deeds done, or not done, there are different broods of persons. Some indeed are themselves thinkers (in the right way of Prof Edward Debono’s methodologies), some are thinkers in the wrong manner, and many who simply do not think at all.
And it often appears as the number of this latter grouping grows day by day. As that old Italian entertainer Renzo Arbore used to constantly admonish us in his TV beer commercials: “meditate gente, meditate,” think dear people, think…