Now that we’ve seen a case study complete with symptoms of our illness, let’s put a definition to it.
Information Regurgitation: If you spend your life just trusting what people who you consider experts say, never asking questions, and never digging beyond surface level, then you will spend your life regurgitating the thoughts and opinions of others.
If you’re under 30, then you probably think that you’re immune to this; that you can tell from light years away when something isn’t authentic. But you, like me, were fooled. You see, our immunizations (that just so happen to share the names of our favorite search engines), also give us a bit of the sickness. We think that we can run a quick search on something, read the Google highlight, and be instantly smarter than those around us.
We think that because we have a few sources that we trust, and we look at what they say on whatever subject we are considering, that we’ve done research.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s great to have people you trust, but call it what it is. That isn’t research, it’s validation. If you wrote your college papers that way, well, let’s just say that you probably shouldn’t apply to graduate school.
If you really want the answers that you say you do, then it has to go deeper than that. You have to look at all the opinions, throw them in the ring together with all of the evidence and data, and see which is left standing at the end of the match.
I do mean that you should do this with everything. The Bible, your faith, your fitness, your work, everything that you truly care about.
Be absolutely relentless in this. We all have this sickness a bit already. The key is to keep it from spreading!