Saturday, January 26, 2019

Getting one's priorities straight

Not everything is a good fit. The secret is getting out before it's too late or avoiding the problem altogether. When I was young and just starting to make my way in the world I mistakenly assumed that logic and reason were the best vehicles for accomplishment.  Now however my first inclination is to follow my instinct.  Perhaps the success of instinct is something which has unwittingly developed over the years. I am more persuaded that it has always been a good bet.  What on the other hand has not always been a good bet is that I actually pay attention to what my instinct is telling me. That's the real challenge with instinct - not its content but its application.

The power of argument is not to be understated. There are so many people who are skilled at deception. Often understanding the thrust of the so-called rationale is more difficult than most can comprehend. Oddly we frequently succumb to what we imagine to be our own insufficiency instead of listening to our instinct.  But when we subsequently hear ourselves saying, "I knew I shouldn't have done that!", that's when we should seriously apply the logic to our conduct. The logic is of course that if we really did know something was peculiar, it is then that we should have held back instead of plowing forward marred by uncertainty.

The strength of instinct is that it speaks to us without the absorption of either time or reasoning.  We are unaccustomed to drawing conclusions so readily. By contrast we mistakenly convince ourselves that undertaking some petty protraction will afford a more in-depth analysis, all the while ignoring the skilfulness of Nature to provide the very answer we're searching for. To appreciate that stunning accuracy of instinct one need only recall the blunt cleverness which directs an animal to flee from threat.  The animal most certainly doesn't engage in any intellectual analysis of the dilemma before gathering speed. The instinct of flight is so in tune with the survival of the creature that the mere idea of contemplating its exactitude is preposterous. There is always time later - when things have quietened down - to revisit the question if indeed one then feels the necessity to do so.  It's a matter of priorities, that's all.

"Which was first, thirst or drinking?

Thirst, for who in the time of innocence would have drunk without being athirst?

Nay, sir, it was drinking; for privatio praesupponit habitum.”

Excerpt From: Fran├žois Rabelais. “Gargantua and Pantagruel"

"omnis privatio praesupponit habitum"

"Every privation presupposes a former enjoyment."

A "rule of philosophic" quoted by Lord Coke, and applied to the discontinuance of an estate.

Privatio praesupponit habitum
A deprivation presupposes something held or possessed.

Sir Edward Coke SL
English barrister, judge, and politician
considered the greatest jurist of the Elizabethan and Jacobean eras

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