Thursday, 14 April 2011

Nature or Nurture?

This morning having a lovely long chat on the phone to one of my brothers, I happened on the subject of the forthcoming AV vote.  I asked him if he had been giving it some thought, like me, he had, and we had both come to exactly the same conclusion. (No, I'm not about  to start a political discussion here so our decision/s will remain private).  What was interesting was that our thought processes had taken us by the same route to the same conclusion.

We - all three of my brothers and I - were brought up in exactly the same way, with exactly the same rules and life-style directions, yet in most things in life we have all gone in quite seperate directions, made completely different sets of rules and behaviours for our own lives and in some ways are almost total opposites.

Our tastes in music, theatre, literature, comedy are all quite different, while my turning to Christianity has caused considerable surprise to say the least, though, no condemnation, much too democratic for that.

Yet, when it comes to things political it seems we think as one.

My late husband and I were complete opposites politically but managed to avoid any really acrimoneous discussion, agreeing to disagree about most things.  He was brought up a Wesleyan but never in the 38 years we were married went to church, except for weddings, funerals etc (his family, not mine).  He would  have  been amused and amazed that his "Welsh heathen", had done an about face on such a fundamental issue.

We, John and I, and my brothers and I always managed to tolerate each other's views even when they were utterly different from each other., yet it is only now, so late in life that I have started wondering how much we do actually think for ourselves and how much is pre-conditioning.

No doubt some day there will be a serious study of this strange state of affairs.  Meanwhile I'm putting my money on nature.


  1. My money's on a mixture of both, Ray,plus individual, and therefore unique, life experience. How one untangles any one strand, I have no idea :-)

  2. Politics and religion often cause division in families. Sad to say, I speak from experience :-(

  3. Perpetua thanks. I see why you feel both are a part of what we are, however, I would maintain that Nurture provides the background to our attitudes and Nature our individual perspective, that which makes us individual.

    Ron I am sorry you have had to experience division, I guess I have been lucky in the basic solidarity of my family so that we can accept each other's different views of life.