Why? – This is the most important question that exists.

All too often our thoughts are simplistic and shallow. Children always ask “why?”. A common game that children like is to ask why continuously to every new answer you give in a long chain of interrogation. Much to the parent’s annoyance of eventually having to admit their ignorance when the questions become too difficult.

I think if we ask ourselves and others “why?” more often we can solve a lot of problems.

Racism/nationalism/patriotism, biases, heuristics, logical fallacies are just some categories of simplistic thinking. It is the root of the majority, if not all, of problems in the world caused by humans upon other humans.

Why not?
Why do I think this?
Why do I feel this?
Why do you think this?
Why do you feel this?
Why does this matter?
Why doesn’t this matter?

If we ask questions like this more often we can get a better grasp on reality and improve our relationships with ourselves and others.

  1. I like this post because I ALWAYS ask “why?”
    I am just a curious human being who needs to know everything about everything. It annoys people sometimes. Also I can’t do anything or follow any order unless I know why I should be doing it. Again, this sometimes causes me problems.

  2. You are absolutely correct, great post from someone with obvious commonsense.

  3. I totally agree! And regarding kids: I always swore I wouldn’t say because I said so… but when my daughter answered every answer I gave with the question why…I eventually said because I said so!

  4. Why is always a good question, but is even better if you plan to use the answers.

  5. Some men see things as they are and ask why I dream things that never were and ask why not (Robert Kennedy)

  6. Indeed.. Why… This would be a great name for the new classroom to inspire our children to explore life for themself… we can start though by encouraging our own children to question life and be an example of discovering life… Thanks for coming to my blog and reading my posts… Maybe we can further enjoy each others journey of discovery… Barbara

  7. iphios said:

    The problem with “Why” is that it may reveal more about who we are than we want to know. If we ask “why we feel this way?” “why we are reacting the way we do?” it reveals the skeleton we wish to hide.

    But i agree, it is an important question, but people fear it so much. Understanding the why of things I think would allow us to be more compassionate.

  8. True story, that was actually the one and only question I had on a philosophy final exam one semester! I wrote my answer in about 2 seconds and left – “Because”

    I was the only one to receive an A on that final. Sometimes vague and general questions deserve vague and general answers. Instead of asking “why?” maybe we should be asking “why not?” because why only gets at the cause but why not gets more at a solution or at least alternatives that are more desirable. Knowledge is gained by asking questions but wisdom is knowing which questions to ask!

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