- firm conviction that something is the case.
What arrogance or ignorance carries certainty into a room…
…Into a space, into a mind?
For better or worse, other than a full realization of the power of love, and the tenacity of fear, I am rarely plagued by certainty.
For how am I to assume that all I currently know is all I’ll ever know? Why would I want the experience I now hold, to be all that I will contain?
Am I to stop questioning this vast and varied world, or to leave its intricacies and complexities left unexplored, unexamined?
Should I close my eyes to all but my favorite flowers in the field? Can my predilections and propensities deny the beauty beheld in another’s eyes?
Am I to believe that my way of experiencing the world, that living by my beliefs, celebrating my culture, dares others not?
My world looms large. My world weaves a broader more beautiful narrative including and welcoming differences built into this life. Though at times we are consumed by a soloist, the truest harmonies can only be captured through wholehearted collaboration of a full choir.
Love lets us hear those harmonies. Fear, becomes the din in our ear.
Fear seeks to prove the limits of love, blurring a fuller beauty before us. Were I to adopt certainty, might I then step on others more blissfully and with greater impunity? Would their plight become nothing more than a speck of dust in my own blurred vision?
Fear demands we block the view of what we don’t want to see, fear sorts us into a less messy existence, narrows the world, reduces discomfort, limits and simplifies perspective and explains away discomfort.
Yet, how to proceed, when my own discomfort lies in limits, screams at sameness, withers in narrowness? Intrigued by anomaly, I’m curious about contrast and consider outliers and underdogs wondrous things.
Am I, in the face of others’ certainty, to become that which is loathsome to my sensibilities? To compliment their narrowness with my own?
Should I embrace fear filled, seeming heartless, hatred in response to a hate filled world? Become an island of cowardice planted in our ocean? Am I willing to see another’s life as less valuable than my own?
I will not.
From core to cloud, I believe all creatures within our sphere, have equal right to their breaths and steps taken here. While I prefer kindness to drive those lives, I understand that only experiencing the absence of compassion, will we recognize its strength and power. By exemplifying decency, sympathy, concern and care, I believe we will find common cause, yet often, only in times of tragedy, trials that have torn us apart, will we draw closer together.
I am not so bold as to assume I possess the greatness or clarity that singularly defines any fine point. My views are not weak in this admission, rather, they are more expansive in their inclusions, their many voices strengthen my soul, allowing for disruption, dissent, discord, often welcoming philosophical and historical rancor. While I can disagree and debate, and despite finding and abhorring fundamental cruelty and inhumanity that at times beats at the heart of my opposition, I cannot hate so easily. We all see the light differently in our stars.
Rather, I find comfort in options, untamed by the wildness of my insignificance. Learning contentment in my smallness on that greater scale, I cannot know what drove another to the fear at hatred’s root. Though I may hope to illuminate what I see as dark, my light is dim by another’s standard. Though I hope to engage by diving into known and unknown stories, still, I cannot open a closure on a heart.
In that awareness I feel closer to our minuteness, to our finiteness. There must be reason for our distinctness and I am ready to look up and see what others may see. I’m seeing how minuscule self is in our collective magnificence, and finding magnitude in the mundane. Microscopic within the wide range of our body, I’m molecularly connected to our shared insecurities, atomized by the promises of fear seeping into our actions.
We are but components, modest numbers of our sum. I will keep adding.
Love will solve the rest of the equation. Of this we can be certain.