Point 4: Identification and cultivation of Common Sense

Excellence of identification of Common Sense at a particular moment does not require any specialized intellectual education or some peculiar environment. This comes from a constant habit of reflection which is a process of paying keen attention to observe the invisible details, resulting into the ability of forming correct conclusions when the thing in question is related to the similar or familiar things they could comprehend and yield conclusion from.

Newton himself often told the story that he was inspired to formulate his theory of gravitation by watching the fall of an apple from a tree. The question was not whether gravity existed, Gravity is a law of nature but why did only Newton find gravity why not his innumerable ancestors or contemporaries. Newton was responsible for discovering many outstanding scientific and mathem-atical concepts.

The question was not whether gravity existed, Gravity is a law of nature but why did only

Newton find gravity why not his innumerable ancestors or contemporaries.

Identification of Common Sense is a process. The input of this process is some retained Common Sense that has come from or acquired through some prior incidence, information, knowledge, experience, advice etc. The processing includes observation, matching the observations with inputs, filtering it through common goals and principles. The output is Common Sense required. This required Common Sense goes to the reservoir which is used at appropriate moment.

The process is verifiable; for any past opinion, to assure that you have used Common Sense, you can cross check the process.

Once there was an erudite scientist. He developed a formula and learned the art of reproducing himself by doing lots of practice and efforts. He did it so flawlessly that telling the reproduction from the original was impossible. Though, one day while doing his research, he realized that the Angel of Death was in search of him. In order to remain immortal, he reproduced a dozen duplicates of himself. The replicas were so meticulous that all of them looked unerringly like him. Now when this Angel of Death came down, he was at a loss to distinguish which of the thirteen before him was the original scientist, and out of confusion, he left them and went back to heaven.

But, not for long, for being an expert in human nature, the Angel came up with a crafty thought. He said to the scientist, speaking to all thirteen of them, "Sir, you must be brilliant to have succeeded in making such perfect reproduction formula of yourself. However, I have discovered a flaw in your work, just one tiny little fault."

The scientist immediately pounced out and shouted, Impossible! Where is the fault?"

"Right here" said the Angel, as he took the scientist up from rest of the reproductions and carried him off. The entire purpose of the scientist and his formula of reproduction failed as he could not control his pride and lost his life.

The whole purpose of the scientist and his formula of reproduction failed as he could not control his pride and lost his life.

He could not make the Common Sense of the moment may be for the lack of input or filtering.

It is a process of deduction from the most ordinary facts. Regular exercise makes Common Sense intervene automatically in all our decisions. The process must be permeated with the principles. A floor worker will be faster in anticipating the production by a machine than a top official. And a top official will be more comfortable in comprehending overall results in case of a particular level of output by machines, because they have their own distinct set of inputs in their minds to deduce the decision from. Without prior links one can not reason Common Sense for a particular situation or time. Taking a judgment is not pure reasoning but at the time of every new judgment, the prior links must be checked thoroughly by permeating them through the concerned principles.

This process is truly same for every human being irrespective of their geographical position, religion, sex, education, cast and other factors associated with human beings.

A failure followed by a resolution of never again to fall into the same error is the stimulus of the process of identification of Common Sense.

Thomas Edison tried two thousand different materials in search of a filament for the light bulb. When none worked satisfactorily, his assistant complained, "All our work is in vain. We have learned nothing. Edison replied very confidently, “Oh, we have come a long way and we have learned a lot. We know that there are two thousand elements which we cannot use to make a good light bulb”.[1]

The habit of practicing Common Sense does not blossom naturally; it demands cultivation.

It is acquired like other faculties which go to make up moral equilibrium.

You would have surely had an experience of cultivating a plant or a relationship. Have you ever noticed how we sustain them. It is not about money or not for short hours and for nobody else. You establish a relationship with every plant and every person. Similarly, Common Sense is cultivated; you are united personally with every instance of it; you cultivate every single one by your own experiences; by your relationship with yourself, others and with the enormous power of truth.

Cultivating plants or relationships are quite familiar but, how to cultivate Common Sense, enthuse us to understand the dimensions of life required to be sown with the seeds of Common Sense.

The human life could be bifurcated into two broad semi parts:

  1. Micro life
  2. Macro life

Micro and macro both evidently capture human life, they overlap and intersect; they complement and contrast but they are the elements comprising same unit.

In the coming two messages we will talk about micro and macro spheres, what they are and what they comprise of.

[1] Capuchin, Rijo Kollukalayil, SOUNDLESS SOUND Meditations, Jyoti Printers, Noida, 2008, P 68