Assume = Ass u me = Making an Ass of u and me

Why do we assume so much in life and end up making a fool of ourselves? Is it the human tendency to make quick judgments or is it the tendency to make our judgments easier by assuming unavailable information? Why do I (and all of us) make an ass of you and me by assuming?
Why do we have so many pre-conceived notions? Why can’t we have an open mind to things? Is it because of our beliefs and value systems or because of cultures and subcultures we live in?
Having an open mind to things can solve half of the human conflicts but easier said than done. It is same as saying, “If all religions became tolerant of each other, we shall have peace on earth.” A monumental task, sounds utopian…..
Are assumptions necessary at times? What assumptions do we make and why do we make them?" Are our assumptions reasonable or unreasonable? Are they based on any evidence other than how we feel or our own opinions? According to www.criticalthinking.org, “an assumption is something we take for granted or presuppose. Usually it is something we previously learned and do not question. It is part of our system of beliefs. We assume our beliefs to be true and use them to interpret the world about us.”
They say, the beginning of wisdom is when we start questioning everything. We must question the basis of our assumptions or our beliefs. Are they based on sufficient logic? Is it logical to look at each person with a beard with suspicion? Sometimes our assumptions can be rooted in our phobias and paranoia (of course they are unjustified fears). Humans are prone to failure and that’s why we need to question ourselves all the time. Are we getting swayed by emotions and phobias in our decisions and making unjustified assumptions? The very understanding and consciousness of our illogical assumptions is an important landmark in our personal growth.
In order to gain command over our thinking and become critical and logical thinkers, we must notice the inferences we are making, the assumptions upon which we are basing those inferences, and the point of view about the world we are developing as a result. Here is a moving story on how we make a fool of ourselves by assuming:-
A woman was driving a new car and met with an accident. Her husband had recently gifted the car to her. She pulled over to the side of the road and was in a state of shock. The driver of another car (an old gentleman) passing by came out of his car and started examining the damage. He then went to the lady, who was crying and asked her, “Are you okay lady?”
The lady was sobbing hard and said; “I am fine but my husband is going to be so upset” The old gentleman tried to console her and asked for insurance papers. The lady searched for the papers in the glove compartment and found the insurance papers. As she took out the envelope containing the documents, she found a note attached. The note read, “Honey just in case you ever have an accident, and please remember, I love you and not the car.”
Let us walk to conclusions and not jump to conclusions. Assumptions and inferences permeate our lives precisely because we cannot act without them. An Indian driver assumes that the vehicle coming from behind will overtake from the right (as per traffic rules) but assuming a human being to behave in a certain way or assuming personality characteristics on the basis of stereotypes can have serious repercussions on human relationships.
So my dear readers, avoid assuming as far as possible and stop making an ass of you and me.
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Dr Amit Nagpal is a Life Skills Trainer and a Motivational Speaker.

He may be reached at amitknagpal@gmail.com

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