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Be Not Afeared

by Louise R. Chapman

Be not afeared of thinking,
Or searching for the truth,
Prepare for the revision
Of dogmas held in youth.

Adopt a new perspective,
Immerse yourself in logic,
And critically assess
The deadly demagogic.

Examine your opinions,
Seek new ones if you please,
Resist indoctrination:
It spreads like a disease.

Let reason be your mentor,
And keep an open mind,
Reflect upon your principles,
Leave prejudice behind.

Read with discrimination,
Let reason reign supreme,
And don’t discount the radical
For being ‘too extreme’.

For what once seemed preposterous,
To people just like you,
Has now achieved the status
Of being clearly true:

The rights and needs of animals;
The move from faith to doubt;
The struggle for equality;
Once delusions of the devout.

So be not afeared of voicing
Your disagreeing cry,
And be not too deferential,
Continue asking “Why?”

Be not afeared of thinking,
And listen when I say,
“Make strange the dogmas of the past,
Let reason guide your way.”

© Louise R. Chapman 2013

Louise Rebecca Chapman studies Philosophy at King’s College London.

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