Established, since 1997, leading UK based training provider.
Celebrating 25 years in business! CPD Member - The CPD Certification Service ilm Recognised Provider

Active Vs Passive Mind

Active vs Passive Mind

Active vs Passive Mind

Passive minds wait idly for facts to imprint knowledge onto their brains.

Active minds don't wait. Instead, they constantly seek out knowledge by actively asking intelligent questions in order to discover facts.

But it is important to know that becoming an educated individual, requires more than simply accumulating an ever-increasing number of facts.

To become educated requires the development of a mind, which seeks not only facts, but also their causes.

In ancient Greece, the great philosophers taught that the ability to understand the causes of facts was more important than learning the facts themselves, because the facts change daily, but the underlying causes of facts remain the same.

Classical Greek philosophers taught that the ability to identify causes, was the greatest intellectual endowment; so, its development was seen as the primary purpose of formal education. Aristotle wrote that the best life was one that was devoted to "truth seeking", because the "Truth Seeking Citizen" is always pleasant, successful and interesting.

In order to develop an active mind, it is necessary to learn its three basic rules.

1. The law of Universal Causation.

"Every event is caused by the conditions that preceded it".

That is, there are NO causeless events. Things don't "just happen".

So, if you want to know why something happened, then you must look at the past and examine the conditions that led up to the event.

This is why scientists seek to isolate events, (preferably under conditions that they can control) in order to investigate the specific set of conditions under which the event always occurs, and in the absence of which, it never occurs.

2. The law of cause and effect

"Under the same set of specific causal conditions, the same effect will always occur".

This law implies two other rules:

  • "If you want a particular effect to happen, then you must initiate its specific causes". Merely wanting, hoping or praying that something will occur is not enough to make it happen - you must actively discover its causes and put them in place. If you don't initiate the causes, then you won't get the effect you wish for.
  • "If you initiate a particular set of causes, then the effects of those causes must inevitably be produced". Which is why nobody can indefinitely escape the painful consequences of their bad habits or wrong actions; bad actions produce bad consequences.

3. Uniformities of coexistence.

Just because two things always occur together, does NOT necessarily mean that they are causally connected, because they may both be the consequence of a SHARED cause. For example, poverty and crime often are seen together, but that does NOT mean:

  • Poor people are more likely to be criminals.
  • Wealthy people are less likely to be criminals.
  • If you give criminals money, they will stop committing crimes.

From the above notes, we can see that the possession of an active mind is NOT a thing of chance, but is the result of a careful study of the rules of effective thinking.

Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

If you would like to know more about how to solve problems and achieve goals, please attend our Critical Thinking and Problem Solving Course. Critical thinking empowers business leaders and managers to identify inconsistencies in their plans and replace errors with coherent, logical thought and action.

About the Author: Chris Farmer

Chris

Chris Farmer is the founder of the Corporate Coach Group and has many years’ experience in training leaders and managers, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve their organisational goals, especially during tough economic times. He is also well aware of the disciplines and problems associated with running a business.

Over the years, Chris has designed and delivered thousands of training programmes and has coached and motivated many management teams, groups and individuals. His training programmes are both structured and clear, designed to help delegates organise their thinking and, wherever necessary, to improve their techniques and skills.

Blogs by Email

Do you want to receive an email whenever we post a new blog? The blogs contain article 5-10 minutes long - ideal for reading during your coffee break!

Further Reading in Personal Effectiveness

  • How to feel great everyday
    The words you use have the power to change how you feel, both in positive and negative ways. Find out how important it is to use the right words, to make yourself feel great everyday and enable you to perform even better.
    Read Article >
  • The Power of Personal Initiative
    Personal initiative is a powerful thing, which everyone possesses. By using your initiative you will achieve success. But don't let procrastination get in the way of your personal initiative.
    Read Article >
  • Be Committed, Consistent and Progressive
    Don't rely on others to improve your current situation. Rely on yourself to make your life better. Commit one hundred percent to improving on your current condition.
    Read Article >
  • How to get reliable information
    There are plenty of ways to acquire information these days, but how can you be sure that it is correct and reliable? Here are four top tips to remember when analysing the content of any information.
    Read Article >
  • Six Mind Hacks to Boost Your Confidence
    Being confident is something that most people strive to be. You feel able to take on even the toughest tasks when you have confidence in your abilities. Here are six mind hacks to boost your confidence, starting today.
    Read Article >

Looking for Personal Development Training?

If you're looking to develop your Personal Effectiveness Skills, you may find this Personal Development Training Course beneficial:

Open Training Course Pricing and Availability

27 - 28 February
London - Central
£900 +VAT
2 - 3 March
Online - Teams
£900 +VAT
6 - 7 March
Manchester City
£900 +VAT
13 - 14 March
Southampton
£900 +VAT
More dates and locations available
Save £100 on this course

Next Open Course Starts in 18 days, London - Central, places available Book Now >