Friday, May 27, 2011


Frankly, I don’t believe in anything. I don’t ‘believe’, full stop.

By definition, when you believe in something, you hold something to be true regardless of any contrary evidence. In fact, the stronger the evidence against your belief, the more tightly you clutch fast to it, as if this is some sort of test of faith. “Dumb, dumb and dumber,” say I. 

Only a dope elects to close off her mind against any future change or growth. Why do so? Is it to stave off the discomfort of having to amend one’s worldview? Is it to hold at bay the unease of being uncertain? The Nobel Prize-winning scientist, Richard Feynman, a gentleman that I have a lot of time for, loved to be in a position of not knowing. It spurred him on in his inquiries and made life interesting for him. 

To me, investing ‘faith’ in some authority figure’s story is nothing but a cop-out, I've always felt. The only thing that prepackaged philosophical narratives offer is a ready-made excuse not to think for oneself, but then you give up that power to some group, or to a theocracy. 

So I will not ‘believe’. I won’t blindly accept any unsubstantiated proposition (which is not to say that I’m materially-minded, and that I limit my thinking to objects that I can sense, or that I confine myself to musing upon the mind-figments derived from logical and philosophical machinations). All I’m saying is that to kow-tow willy-nilly to any historical or mythological celebrity is not my scene. I don't swallow any particular line, and I don't expect you to swallow all that I say either. 

But I do believe that you’ll find pearls of wisdom most anywhere. That said, here’s where I do my version of a literature review, and mention a few influences on my thinking. But before I do so, I’ll offer a word of warning.

It’s certainly true that I have benefited from reading what others have to say, but that has mostly been supplementary. Ultimately, I'm accountable to myself only. I must use the manner and style of thinking that suits me best. Just like Feynman, for the most part, I’ve felt it necessary to isolate myself from others' philosophies. I didn't want to risk being steered off track.

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