The Court of Common Sense

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A good friend and I used to talk about the need for common sense in our world today. We even decided to create the “Court of Common Sense” whereby individuals with disagreements could outline their concerns, pay a small fee, then allow us to make the final, binding decision. We still believe this would avoid much of the expense and concern with living in our modern world. Just think… the Court of Common Sense could arbitrate many issues currently consuming our court system, it would eliminate some needless disagreements between neighbors, and end much of the drama that we read about in the news every day. Our thought was and continues to be that if everyone would agree to simply live by “common sense”, the world would be a simpler and happier place.

Just what is common sense? Leonardo da Vinci described it this way:

“Common sense is that which judges the things given to it by other senses.” – Leonardo da Vinci

Common sense can also be defined as the conclusion drawn by reasonable people viewing the available objective data at their disposal. Or, in plain English, it is simply the right thing to do based on what we now know. Why did common sense become so rare or complex? Maybe it started because everything must now be viewed in our litigious society through the eyes of a potential lawsuit. For example, a lawn mower company was once sued because the instructions for use did not explicitly say, “Do not attempt to pick up the lawnmower and use it as a hedge trimmer.” If an item like this was brought before the Court of Common Sense, the suing individual would be thrown out of court during the first minute of arguments. Lack of instructions do not excuse stupidity!

Common sense to us can often mean that we pause, step back, and ask, “What are we really trying to solve? Do I have enough information right now to tell me the answer or at least send me in the right direction?” Or, more plainly, “What is the non-stupid answer to that question?” In short, the best answer is often the most simple, least complex one.

So, the challenge for us today is to ask the question, “What would the Court of Common Sense say?” If the answer comes quickly and obviously, you usually have the answer needed.

Have an awesome one!

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