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Conspiracy Theories and the Gift of Imagination

Conspiracy Theories and the Gift of Imagination

As humans, we need reasons behind everything. Every decision, every event; we’re like perpetual toddlers asking “why?” All. The. Time. Growing up in the information age, it’s hard to stop at the face value of anything. We must constantly pull at the threads, and they often lead to more questions and fewer answers. Questions such as: Why are we here? How much does our life truly matter? What happens after we die?

It’s troubling to think that there is something that we don’t understand. Sit with the unknown long enough, and it becomes too uncomfortable to bear. We dismiss the thought that maybe we don’t have a purpose. And then we go searching for what that purpose is. And that’s where conspiracy theories come in.

Conspiracy theories are rampant in our society. Pick a rabbit hole: 9/11. Area 51. Humans being descendants of reptiles. Government convolution – you could spend a lifetime on this one. How many theories have you heard about each of these subjects?

If you want to spend your life googling and getting nothing done, by all means, search away. But what you’ll learn more about, rather than the topic you sought to understand, is your own mind. Your own thought process is really what matters when deciding and determining your beliefs about specific topics. Are you going to take things at face value, or are you going to seek the truth beyond the surface? Red or blue pill? Diving into a conspiracy theory turns out to be a way of diving into your own thought process.

Conspiracy theories also help us get back in touch with something very important – our imagination. One thing I’ve come to understand from my own deep dives into factual black holes is that our imagination never goes away, but it becomes hidden. We are born dreamers, but as we get older and conform to beliefs that are molded around us, as we learn more facts, our imagination weakens. But conspiracy theories – just like the notion of God, the stars, the universe, our existence – all tell us it’s okay to flex that creativity muscle. It’s okay to think outside the box because some of our greatest findings and creations have come from dreamers. Then, to take what we know and add it to what we believe and form an idea that could be one correct answer of many, doesn’t take a genius, it takes the greatest gift we’ve ever been given: imagination.

Imagination is an important part of who we are. People are naturally curious. How did we find out about the cosmos and the big bang theory? Curiosity. How was Atlantis discovered? Curiosity. Why do we go talk to an attractive man or woman that we see in a bar or grocery store? Curiosity. Curiosity leads to discovery which may lead to either a new truth, or a failure that we can learn from.

Many of us are raised with a set of certain beliefs, maybe even a specific religion. But questioning things doesn’t just lead to endless unknowing, sometimes it helps us discover ourselves. We are creative, we are dreamers, we are explorers, and we are creatures of a curious nature.

Following a conspiracy theory isn’t just a part of what we do, it’s a tool that we use to understand the world around us. The more discoveries we find, the more questions arise. And the more questions that arise, the more mysterious, vast, and fun the world becomes.

This post reflects the views and experiences of the author, and is intended to start a conversation. Please share your thoughts in the comments below!


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Mika Cohen is a world traveler based in St. Louis, MO. Her passions for coffee and culture allow her to connect people across the globe. Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, she looks for any excuse to find adventure - and write about it. Share a virtual cuppa Joe via Instagram @thegoodgrind.

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