It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.
My last post contained this quote and I thought I'd explain why I liked it. It reminds me of the way religious people censor their lives so that no contradicting ideas cause them to doubt. It was one of the things that bothered me most growing up. I was very curious about everything and was frustrated repeatedly by my parents taking books out of my hands and telling me they were of the devil and I shouldn't pollute myself with them. They also interrupted science shows I watched to complain about mentions of evolution. I just couldn't understand why no one trusted themselves to read about an idea without accepting it blindly. I naturally thought to myself, well if what I was taught was right then shouldn't it stand up strongly in my mind against conflicting ideas? Therefore why shouldn't I learn about conflicting ideas in order to better argue against them. It wasn't until I was too old for them to censor my life that I started really learning some truth.
I believe that in order to learn we must be willing to open our minds to all kinds of things, even if they contradict what we believe to be true. I often suspend making a decision on subjects for long periods of time until I feel I know enough about it to have an opinion on it. I entertain many thoughts. Partly because, well, a lot of stupid ideas are entertaining, but at the end of the day I shelve those ideas and don't accept them as fact. Philosophy and psychology are two areas in which I do a lot of this entertaining and shelving.