Photo taken by the author; early morning sunrise in Kigali, Rwanda
“He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes; he who does not ask a question remains a fool forever.”
– Chinese proverb
You have heard this saying many times before: ”There’s no such thing as a dumb question.”
I have heard this quoted so many times over the years and in so many different contexts.
The problem, however, is that not many people seem to follow it.
There is a kind of stigma regarding this, as it has been my experience that unfortunately most people don’t follow this axiom.
Instead, they are often the first to burst out laughing or make an insensitive comment towards the person who asked a “dumb” question, in their eyes.
This really bothers me, as I have been on the recipient end of this many times.
It destroys a person’s self-confidence and will make them think twice before asking a question the next time, or any questions in the future, for that matter.
See how ridiculous this is?
It is loathed in insecurity and insincerity.
This is dumb, not that there are dumb questions, but it is dumb to think that there are dumb questions – and this needs to stop. It can start with you.
When we’re children and we don’t know any better, okay I get that.
But when we’re grown-up, reasonably intelligent and educated adults, then this crosses the line that is unexplainable and inexcusable.
As one of my sisters would say, “Don’t be dumb.”
Let people ask their questions and quit stunting their progress in life, as well as your own.
Questions should not be discouraged; rather, they should be very much encouraged.
Here’s a question for you: Why do you question negatively a question?
Since we’re on the topic of questions, where do they come from?
Questions arise out of a place of wondering, being curious, interested about something, inquisitive about a topic, or simply, just wanting to find out more, to name a few areas.
Questions are what gives birth to new ideas, which leads to increased knowledge, awareness, and understanding.
It also leads to unending creativity and innovation.
Questions stimulate a learner’s thoughts and drives them towards ideas and thoughts never once thought of before – either by themselves or by other people.
And this is where the impossible and the breakthrough occur: in a person’s life, in society, in a new way of doing something, or even in shaping and shifting cultural thought.
The release of its potential knows no end, as it can change families, churches, businesses, organizations, people groups, and ultimately entire nations.
All from the thought of a single question and the courage a single person had to ask that particular question.