“Unknowing” as Opportunity Potential

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“Unknowing” as Opportunity Potential

As people, perhaps we react with fear when we identify the experience of another as so “radically” different from our own experiences because it ultimately makes us look inward and forces us to question the validity and relevance of our own ways of existing in the world. That can be a scary existential threat if we assume that some ways are wholly good/bad or right/wrong. If you’re doing things the “right” way, then the other way must be “wrong”. Right? Instead of trying to come to conclusions about the existential questions that seemingly anomalous events may elicit, maybe letting go of the need to come to conclusions at all–and just accepting “closure” and “certainty” as illusory concepts in the first place–could help us connect to others, ourselves, and the wonderfully unpredictable world around us.

Because, nobody knows (probably), but if we can unconditionally accept our shared potential as human beings: a potential to deliver good ideas, bad ideas, and everything in between, maybe we can co-recover those integral connections that make our ‘being’ relevant. And that is a type of sense making that is priceless.

Due to a plethora of knowledge voids–the uncertainty introduced by reliability and validity issues, the epistemological and ontological mysteries surrounding consciousness itself, the ways in which we think we fully understand the essence or nature of any ‘thing’, ‘construct’, or concept..etc.– it quickly becomes difficult to lay claim to ‘what is’ or to assert ‘the truth’. This becomes especially relevant to professional ethics in a social system where we see a trend toward certain agents of knowledge (for example, doctors) laying claim to “that which is true” about other people and themselves (think assessment and evaluation in psychiatry or clinical psychology, or any “health” profession where there is an implied asymmetrical power dynamic within which the service-provider enacts power over the service-user). Given the ethical implications that defining others/ourselves has for our intellectual, social, physical freedoms and capacities for change (it constrains them)–it seems important to reflect upon how we may be able to integrate–from the social domain to the post meta-physical domain–a meta-theoretical framework of uncertainty that makes salient the ever-present instability inherent to what we think we know or believe. See Also Acatalepsy and Intellectual Humility

Relevant References

 
Conceptual Competence in Psychiatry: Recommendations for Education and Training  
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