And the more important the subject – or closer to their hearts, the harder for them to reconsider their position.

I’m very close to 60 myself and I haven’t yet made peace with my dad.
We’re very good business partners, he lives in the same house with me – my mom passed away almost 25 years ago, and yet not a single day passes without us locking horns.

This morning, it finally downed on me.
He cannot accept my version of things because that would mean he had been wrong – on certain issues, during his entire life.

And what makes me so sure that my version of things is the right one?!?

Simply because his position is:
‘You should be the wiser one. You told me such and such for so long and I haven’t budged. Maybe you should have grown accustomed to the situation long ago and accepted it’.

I actually can accept that, after a certain age, human brain looses some of its flexibility. That is one of the saddest facts of life.
Only we had this very same discussion, on and of, for the last 40 or so years. Both of us were in our prime. He still is…

To make things clearer, before we get to the important part, the differences between us are of a cultural nature.
He is a born and bred Armenian while I’m a mixed breed. He grew up in a consistent cultural environment while I had to adapt to carrying a funny name and to uncountable social changes. He has a clear understanding of the world – which had served him well, while I’m full of questions. And still looking for answers.

And finally, I found one of them.

The funny thing being that I was already aware of the concept for at least 10 years now.

Cognitive dissonance, the mental conflict that occurs when beliefs or assumptions are contradicted by new information. The unease or tension that the conflict arouses in people is relieved by one of several defensive maneuvers: they reject, explain away, or avoid the new information; persuade themselves that no conflict really exists; reconcile the differences; or resort to any other defensive means of preserving stability or order in their conceptions of the world and of themselves. The concept was developed in the 1950s by American psychologist Leon Festinger and became a major point of discussion and research.”

Can you imagine an Eastern Mediterranean patriarch – something all men seeped in that culture attempt to become when growing older, caving in to contrarian opinions expressed by his totally unconventional son?

Can you imagine a successful ‘old timer’ accepting that the methods he had used to get to the top might actually be the causes for what we experience now?

“The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.”

Imagine now what would have happened if the world would have been ruled by people who had made up their minds some 200 years ago.
Then imagine what would have happened if we would have forgotten what had happened 200 years ago…

Cherish your old ones – cause they made you possible, but don’t take them too seriously. It hurts.