28th June, 2022
Whenever I come across old customs, traditions and beliefs hindering change, Iam reminded of an actual experiment conducted in the U.K. more than 50 years back.
Five monkeys were put in a room. In the middle of the room was a ladder, leading to a bunch of bananas hanging from a hook on the ceiling.
Each time a monkey tries to climb the ladder, all the monkeys are sprayed with ice water, which makes them miserable.
Soon enough, whenever a monkey attempts to climb the ladder, all of the other monkeys, not wanting to be sprayed, set upon him and beat him up.
Soon, none of the five monkeys ever attempts to climb the ladder.
One of the original monkeys is then removed, and a new monkey is put in the room. Seeing the bananas and the ladder, he wonders why none of the other monkeys are doing the obvious.
But undaunted, he immediately begins to climb the ladder.
All the other monkeys fall upon him and beat him silly. He has no idea why.
However, he no longer attempts to climb the ladder.
A second original monkey is removed and replaced. The newcomer again attempts to climb the ladder, but all the other monkeys hammer the crap out of him.
This includes the previous new monkey, who, grateful that he’s not on the receiving end this time, participates in the beating because all the other monkeys are doing it.
However, he has no idea why he’s attacking the new monkey.
One by one, all the original monkeys are replaced.
Five new monkeys are now in the room.
None of them have ever been sprayed by ice water. None of them attempt to climb the ladder.
All of them enthusiastically beat up any new monkey who tries, without having any idea why.
And that is how traditions, religions and systems get established and followed.
The five monkeys experiment, therefore, teaches us that we need to be constantly challenging ourselves to look at things from a new light, to question things that don’t always feel right, and to avoid using the excuse of “we’ve always done it this way” to avoid trying new things and branching out in new directions.
Think twice before following a tradition, religion or system blindly, it would make more sense if you get your own understanding to old age systems & beliefs.
Let there be no blocks between your goals & you,
Question every obstacle, don’t let old traditions stop you from your dreams & stay blessed forever!