You Know Nothing
I’m confused all the time.
Every new book I read, every new experience I have, I fall down a deeper well of uncertainty.
There are infinite opinions.
Endless ways to live.
From Buddhist monks to Western capitalists.
Vegans to carnivores.
Gun lovers to gun haters.
Everyone thinks they have the answer.
That they’re living the right way.
But is there a right way?
If there’s anything I’m certain about, it’s that no one knows anything for certain.
Not me, not you, not the Dalai Lama.
In fact, if someone claims they do, be instantly skeptical.
Because we’re all different and fallible.
What may work for me may not work for you.
What will work in one situation may not work in another.
So the danger lies in taking what someone says, especially experts, as unquestionable fact.
Certainty is the enemy.
It’s behind genocides, economic crises, wars.
But luckily, there’s a simple test that you’re doing things right.
Humility and a sense of humor.
The willingness to admit that you’re wrong or unsure.
To laugh at yourself.
And contradict yourself.
To change who you are and what you believe.
Over and over.
Winston Churchill said, “To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.”
Socrates wrote, “I know one thing; that I know nothing.”
And don’t get me wrong this approach to life is tough to swallow.
It hurts the ego to know you’ll never have the answers.
That you’ll forever be confused and skeptical of your own thoughts.
But the silver lining is that it frees you to grow.
To pick what works for you.
And genuine happiness can only come from this kind of growth.
But then again, what do I know?