JWR Outlook

Jewish World Review April 11, 2003 / 9 Nisan, 5763

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Keep an open mind

http://www.jewishworldreview.com | We may not realize that sometimes we pay a steep price for being closed minded. You've heard it said, "Don't talk logic to me. My mind is made up." That happens far too often.

Sure, we should have our convictions and we should not be swayed by every fad. But we should listen.

Our minds are capable of analyzing things and coming to a conclusion. We can only give proper consideration to ideas if we let them enter our minds. If we close our minds we may miss valuable advice.

Some people close their minds precisely because they are afraid that if they allow an idea to enter, they may discover it is correct. This may necessitate a change in their behavior. We are creatures of habit. We dislike change. We may therefore reject anything that may lead to change.

The prophet Isaiah stated this clearly: "These people have closed their ears because they fear that if they hear they will have to change their ways."

Don't close your mind. We should always be in search of the truth, and accept it wherever it may lead us. As long as you are in sincere pursuit of truth, listening to other opinions is never harmful.

Abraham J. Twerski, M.D. is a psychiatrist and ordained rabbi. He is the founder of the Gateway Rehabilitation Center in Pittsburgh, a leading center for addiction treatment. An Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, he is a prolific author, with some 30 books to his credit, including It's Not As Tough As You Think: How to smooth out life's bumps, from which this was excerpted (Sales of this book help fund JWR). Send your comments by clicking here.

© 2002, Mesorah Publications, Ltd.