“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.
Otherwise, harm could result as a consequence of unequal power distributions across stakeholders in conditions of equally distributed uncertainty.
Given the ethical implications that epistemic arrogance has on our practical outcomes –it seems important to reflect upon how we may be able to integrate–from the social to the biophysical–a meta-theoretical framework of uncertainty that makes salient the ever- present instability inherent to what we think we believe. See Also Acatalepsy and Intellectual Humility
Domen RE. The Ethics of Ambiguity: Rethinking the Role and Importance of Uncertainty in Medical Education and Practice. Acad Pathol. 2016 Jun 16;3:2374289516654712. doi: 10.1177/2374289516654712. PMID: 28725771; PMCID: PMC5497921.
Han PK. Conceptual, methodological, and ethical problems in communicating uncertainty in clinical evidence. Med Care Res Rev. 2013 Feb;70(1 Suppl):14S-36S. doi: 10.1177/1077558712459361. Epub 2012 Nov 6. PMID: 23132891; PMCID: PMC4238424.