Although it was in fact amazing, we are probably going to need more than Lady Gaga singing “This Land Is Your Land” from the rafters of Houston’s NRG stadium and drones lighting up the night sky with a waving American flag. We need something to move us from the low road of foul language, protests that accelerate to riots and petty name-calling. We need the power and promise of GREAT MINDS.
The First Lady of Great Minds
“Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.”
Although there is some question as to whether or not she really said this, Eleanor Roosevelt may have been on to something with this amazing quote. We would do well to try and rise above the focus of small minds. How much of what we are hearing and reading is personal in nature? We are better than this. It is not even enough to focus on events or specific actions. This is difficult because events and actions are tangible or concrete. The reason that they come from just average minds is this: they have happened. It’s in the past and can’t be changed.
Great minds focus on ideas. Marcus Tullius Cicero, one of Rome’s greatest orators, said: “It is not by muscle, speed, or physical dexterity that great things are achieved, but by reflection, force of character, and judgment.” There is a war being fought to be the catalyst that creates your ideas. The dominant forces of our culture want to frame the way that we think. It is crucial in our day that we take the reigns for our thoughts. We can’t simply coast on the current of popular opinion. We need reflection, character and judgment to forge the right ideas. And, if we will, there is great power available to us.
Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote: “One idea lights a thousand candles.”
Do you have a small mind, an average mind or a great mind?