Not Cease from Exploration...a blog by Steve Albert

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Finding moments of truth

Masquerading as a man with a reason
My charade is the event of the season
And if I claim to be a wise man, it surely means that I don't know
(Kerry Livgren/Kansas/Carry On Wayward Son) 

Sometimes the most profound moments of truth aren't found in church, aren't found in the teachings of some guru, certainly aren't found from the lips of Presidential candidates and aren't found in universities.  No, sometimes they are found in a simple verse...be it from a song or from a poem. Even a song from a 70's progressive rock band.

Over-thinking anyone?

Me? Well I know fully well that I have the propensity to over-think things.  Hell, if "it" is an emotional thing that I'm facing, well over-thinking is probably an understatement.  Over-thinking could give the uneducated and/or uninitiated the impression of intelligence.  It's not.  In fact, I'd argue that the very concept of clarity in face of multiple points of stuff (where "stuff" can be thoughts, data, feelings, etc.) is probably quite the sign of intelligence. Lord knows that in this day and age we all have far too many points of data in our lives.

Of course there is good news in all of this:  as I've learned over the years (especially over the last two years) no one really knows.  We are all, in a basic sort of way, equally clueless.  Maybe some are better at masquerading their confusion than others, but in reality we are all searching, even if we choose to not to acknowledge the search.  Think of it this way:  I can refuse to acknowledge the theory of gravity, but that will not make me fly if I choose to jump out of a third floor window.  Life brings us all challenges, just like gravity keeps us all pinned to the ground.  That doesn't mean though that we all need to stay pinned to the ground (figuratively or literally).

The point in all this gibberish?  Well, I suspect is it to remind myself that it's okay not to be a wise man, even if some may have the impression otherwise.  The "some", in a bizarre sort of way, if me.  Schizophrenic?  Not really: like most folks I am wearing a few different hats in my life, and some require varying degrees of clue or carelessness at any given time.  My single biggest challenge is that I forget the very words I am writing here, as I have a tendency to island myself into this little world where it's just me that has to figure all this stuff out.

The real nut here isn't knowing or not knowing.  It's not about owning answers, it's about being wise enough to own the search for answers.  It's really about the journey of learning (about life, love, taking chances, etc.) and living, not the destination of life. It really is, as T.S. Eliot observed, not ceasing from exploration.

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