I am perhaps a man of very less original ideas, perhaps no original ideas at all. But as I have written earlier, ideas are somethings which very much attract me. Despite the fact that I am a bit stubborn and resist changes (like others), I am open to new ideas and in fact would embrace them the very moment I am convinced.
It is easy to influence me if you start with some fact/logic based argument and do it irrefutably.
Of course it would take a while before my disposition would be changed. (Let’s call it muscular memory or habit or addiction or anything – which needs constant and consistent care to get accustomed to the new idea)
It seems to me that, during my battle against theism, I had bought too much stock on ‘evolution’, that I had started confusing ‘codes of evolution’ and ‘codes of morality’.
No one needs an explanation about why sexism and racism are bad. Aren’t the gender inequality and racist thoughts the products of evolution? Does that make them moral? I don’t think so.
I know/knew that everything which is a product of evolution is not necessarily good. But I found it hard to find the trade-off between moral values and the system on which it applies – both being the products of the same process.
Finally, I have figured out that the same values which say sexism and racism are bad, are telling that speciesism is bad too. Shouldn’t all species be considered equal if we say all humans be considered equal, despite their inequalities? I guess yes.
(Hard to explain in simple words here, but you do get the gist. Don’t you?)
My first thought about ‘speciesism’ was while reading the selfish gene. I hadn’t taken it so seriously. And I had be fluctuating between the moral values based on logic and actions based on utilitarianism for quite some time. Finally I got some ‘food for thought’ which nailed down the confusion.
As a result, I have come to accept that “all animals are to be considered equal”. To be considered equal doesn’t want dogs be given voting rights, or cows be given education. It is mainly about avoiding unnecessarily induced pain. A long discussion is not in the scope of this entry.
From “all Indians are my brothers and sisters”, I was educated to the single world concept – by my dad and my Malayalam teacher of 7th grade. Now after a long time, I just decided to widen my view of world. Simple!
So, what is my point?
It is regrettable that it took me so long to even start thinking in this direction. But again it is good that it is never too late.
Thanks to the ones helped me. Thanks to all the food for thought. Thanks to the milestones which showed the way for my train of thoughts.
Signing off, Sands.