I don't know, a sort of philosophy

in #life5 years ago

I don't know so many things. Most of what I do know is only an approximation of reality. Yes, I have a sort of "reality", and how I describe that is also an approximation. What I remember is only a fraction of what happened before and even the words I use to describe that, well, they are an approximation, too. I think it is even fair to say that every record we have ever made of "reality", be it our words, our memories, pictures, and video - yeah, that's all an approximation of what really happened.

So my basic philosophy is I don't know. My name doesn't even come close to describing who I am. I could write my own, very detailed autobiography and I still can't give you a complete description of who I am because words are limited in their ability to describe myself. The best way to know me is to be with me. So I spend a lot of time, usually early in the morning, just being with myself. Writing, analyzing, review my life day by day. An unexamined life is not worth living, so they say.

I am agnostic. Not just about God or any sort of deity that could rule the cosmos. I am agnostic about everything. It's not that I disbelieve everything, it's that what I do know is a tiny sliver of what is going on right now. I don't watch the news much. I don't read the news much. I just focus on what is before me. Family, friends, home, and job. And writing. And maybe a bit of recreation, too.

What do I mean by "tiny sliver"? Although our senses give us a sense of reality, they can only do so much. Our eyes see a tiny fraction of the electromagnetic spectrum, what we know as "visible light". Our ears can only detect a tiny sliver of the sound spectrum. Our noses aren't even very sensitive compared to say, a dog's nose. Our sense of touch, though very sensitive, is still no match for animals which seem to get agitated before an earthquake hits. That is something I've seen first hand.

And every day, we expose ourselves to video, pictures, and sounds, which, as far as I can tell, only leave us more jaded as entertainment technology becomes more and more immersive. By jaded, I mean less sensitive to reality.

I say, "I don't know" because I recognize that what I know is not the whole story of what unfolds before me. I say, "I don't know" to acknowledge that although I have collected some knowledge, experience and wisdom, my tiny little brain is simply no match for the universe. So I use that statement, "I don't know", to keep myself humble. "I don't know" is not just my philosophy, it is the starting point of every inquiry I've ever made. I would rather say that "I don't know" and start to investigate, rather than to assume something to be right only to be disappointed later.

I say "I don't know" to reserve judgment, for as I've mentioned before, my judgment is often flawed. "I don't know" allows me room for error. "I don't know" allows me room to change my mind upon finding new information. "I don't know" is the simplest expression of what it means to be agnostic about everything.

I am agnostic to allow room for new information. That is to say, that I reserve judgment so that I can avail myself of new information. I am constantly discarding old information for new information, a state of mind that I think is inconsistent with "belief". I have in the past held beliefs despite new information presented to me, and paid dearly for it. So I have been discarding beliefs as much as possible in order to stay sane, to stay aware, to stay in the present.

This isn't to say that I believe nothing, this is to say that I will discard a belief if I can sense even a whiff of a scent of an error in judgment. My world is always changing. Therefore, my state of mind is always changing so as to adjust and adapt to a world that is changing. My state of mind is not of knowing, it is of wanting to see what will happen next.

If my mind is set on belief, that belief may make it harder for me to see what happens next, without adulteration. When I make a decision to be agnostic, what I am really doing is making every effort to be present for the moment, to accept it for what it is, without any preconceived notions. I am, most of the time, in a constant state of keeping my mind open so that I can accept reality for what is it, and nothing more.

For once I can accept reality for what it is, even love what is, I can better make a decision about what to do next. This is the first step to happiness and contentment, as I do not believe it is possible to be happy unless we can accept what is now, without reservation. I believe this to be true, no matter what our station in life, whether we're poor, rich, lonely or engulfed in humanity.

In order to be happy about anything, anything at all, we must accept our circumstances at the moment. We must accept that what we know is all that we know for now, that what we have is all that we have for now, and that how we feel is all that we feel for now. It's all temporary anyway, so even if we're not happy, there is some value in finding the good in the moment, right now.

It is from this philosophy, this line of thinking, that I have lived in relative peace for much of my adult life. I have no personal adversaries, no need to change anyone, no one to impress, no need for an advantage over another person, and I'm happy and content because of that attitude.

I don't know means I don't know what other people are going through if they say something to offend me or to punish me (in their own minds) for some perceived offense, when I'm really just minding my own business. So if I don't know, then I have no need or desire to punish someone, to reply in haste, to do something rash. I can just let the feeling pass because I don't know.

I don't know allows me to wander and to wonder. I don't know allows me to not know something and be OK with that. I don't know is how I start each day. I really don't know what will happen next, so I make a point to set aside my beliefs and notions so that I can take the day in as it comes. I don't do what I do to make something happen. I do what I do to see what will happen next. For every interaction is really just me testing the world, poking it gently to see what kind of response I will get.

I have found as the days, weeks and months go by, the days between periods of drama tend to stretch longer than before, just by accepting everything, exactly the way it is, without reservation. And even that makes it easier for me to say, I don't know because I have found that acceptance makes it easier for me to live without anxiety. I live without anxiety because I don't have to change anything. With acceptance I can just watch the parade go by and enjoy it. I don't need to know how the parade ends, I only need to enjoy watching it go by.

Write on.

slogan by @tecnosgirl
Slogan by @tecnosgirl

Other articles you might enjoy by @digitalfirehose:

Plan B for Humanity

A basic guaranteed income in the context of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

A sort of political movie review: Star Wars: Rogue One

Happiness isn't getting everything you want - happiness is a skill

The opposite of love is not hate, it is apathy

Fate, impunity and altruism

A short but growing list of people I admire, who have helped me, and/or influenced me, my thinking and/or my posts:


Mostly what I know these days is just how much I don't know. Sounds like you are creating for yourself a life of peace and tranquility.
My struggle is often with the looking within myself. I know that if a person or situation is troublesome it is usually a reflection of something within me. Remembering this during emotional times is my challenge.

This is refreshing. You are honest about your philosophy and I admire that. I like particularly your self examination most mornings. When we fail to examine ourselves for mistakes and shortcomings , how can we become better? I don't know can save us from a whole lot of misunderstandings when dealing with people.

Helping to put misunderstandings in context was part of my motivation in writing the article, yes, although that may not be so obvious at first.

It's quite common for people to assume that if the other person doesn't agree, doesn't understand, that punishment is an appropriate response. So assume ignorance before malice. That seems to have worked well for me.

Wow my goodness I'm totally blown away, you see the Universe is so full of a lot of knowledge even we that pride ourselves as homophones sapien we know very little about the enigma that surrounds us, like you said even the scent or sense of smell of a dog is even more sharper than that of home.
We surround ourselves daily in activities of life with plethora of knowledge in us but the truth is, we really don't know

Admitting it would allow us go in search of knowledge, allow us seek unadulterated information, we're imperfect and filled with imperfection, but how we allowed ourselves wonder?

Beautifully written really your perceptions and philosophical views are so amazing I'm still in thoughts really.

Thank you for taking the time to read my article, and to comment on same. I do try to "blow your mind" when I write like this because it blew my mind when I thought about this stuff.

Your compliments are very much appreciated. :)

Yeah I don't know. I really don't know. I don't know why I'm here in this world?

I don't know anything, but why I'm still breathing? Its because I know that without breathing, I'm gonna die! I know that my life has an end and death is certain. This is a general truth. And we all believe on that, do you not?
I'm really very sorry to say and explain what I have to say Scott.

Its like floating in the air, can't go forward, can't go backward.
We can't play any game if we don't want to win and afraid of losing.
The fact is we can't be safe all the time, we can't be happy all the time.
We can't live forever in this world/universe or whatever we call this place.
Sometimes we think that we're now living in heaven and that's why we try our best not to get sick and even try not to die and always living in safe in our comfort zone.

My apologies on my statements. I'm carried away.

How many years are you being agnostic Scott if you don't mind?

Most of what you have read here is inspired by Alan Watts, in particular, the book, The Wisdom Of Insecurity. It is also inspired by years of improvisation class and stand up comedy I performed myself. So I've been agnostic about everything for at least a decade.

Oh, and another chunk of inspiration comes from my study of quantum mechanics, a science of probability, not certainty.

What are you inspired by? And what is your apology for?

Maybe I said something that contradicts a reader's view or belief, that's why I'm asking for apology for those who read my comments.
I'm inspired by my faith, hope and love. Thanks for asking!

Agnostic for a decade is quite long. But before being agnostic, what was your state or status or religion?

I have never been religious. I think for a long time I was atheist. Now, I'm just agnostic about everything.

I guess you're on your way to become a believer and doubts will be gone in the right perfect time.

You're not yet married right? Maybe I'm wrong, you're married.

I am married. As to my doubts relative to faith, I am not even sure I need to know. For example, if I'm immortal, I don't need to know.


As to believing, I don't need to believe in anything. I just take it as it comes. I try to live my life without expectations.

In my case and in myself, I believe that my body will die (I don't know when.)but my soul is immortal. Its a faith that I hold on to. This is base on my knowledge and experience since I was born until now that I am 43.

Just ignore my age because my profile photo looks 60 years old lol!

I have a question:
Do you believe that your body will die?

I am not sure about what it means to die. We are a loose collection of particles that no one has ever seen directly. Even our best theories indicate that the existence of those particles is more probability than certainty. It has been estimated that the half life of the proton is 1045 years, so relative to human time scales, the atoms are "immortal".

There is also growing evidence that matter has a low level, rudimentary consciousness. There is even a line of scientific inquiry that says that if man has free will, we get it from the matter of which we are composed.

So, in that context, it might be fair to say that my body never dies. I am at one with the universe. There is no "there" out there.

I also have at least one friend who says that I am a non-dualist. Dualism is to suggest that there is a distinction between the self and everything else. As far as I can tell, there is not. Quantum entanglement is proof enough for me that we are all connected.

Everything has a beginning and end. As far as I know, the question of whether or not that end is death, the answer to which is entirely subjective until a scientific consensus can be reached otherwise.

Hi digitalfirehose,

This post has been upvoted by the Curie community curation project and associated vote trail as exceptional content (human curated and reviewed). Have a great day :)

Visit curiesteem.com or join the Curie Discord community to learn more.

Thank you for visiting, reading and voting. I am honored. :)

Interesting concept....yet one must act as if they do "know" in order to make daily decisions....I assume you have a job and responsibilities that force decisions based on "what you know" at that moment...."knowing" is an accumulation of our past experiences so inside we "know" something based on that reality as we see it....

I get the part of "acceptance" and detaching from outside stuff that really doesn't impact us....does provide a point of serenity as one weeds out what is truly our stuff vs others....also the concept of "focusing on myself' helps me to stay on that path....

I would end with the reality of what you do know....you know you don't know...thanks for your thoughts.

Thank you for stopping by, and you're welcome, too. When I write this, I was thinking more about outcomes rather than experience. I suppose I could have made that a bit more clear from the outset.

curado por @curie es muy bueno abrir la mente para ver la realidad de lo que se vive hoy en día hoy aprendí la palabra agnóstico ver la cosas de otra manera @digitalfirehose gracias por compartir un poco de lo que has vivido amor y fe by @neymarth10

cured by @curie is very good open your mind to see the reality of what you live today learn the word agnostic see things differently @digitalfirehose thank you for sharing a little of what you have lived love and faith for @ neymarth10

Thank you for curating my post and nominating me for a curie vote. And thank you for noticing. :)

This is a very interesting philosophy of yours. After read through your article, i do agree with you on some points.

So I spend a lot of time, usually early in the morning, just being with myself. Writing, analyzing, review my life day by day. An unexamined life is not worth living, so they say.

I do come across people do exactly the same. They always do refelction on themselves about yesterday. And what can be improved or prevented.

Sometimes, we cannot just say " I don't know". It give me an impression that we try to avoid responsibilities if we can just say " I don't know" However, I do agree with you that use of " I don't know " to reserve judgement.

If my mind is set on belief, that belief may make it harder for me to see what happens next, without adulteration.

You exactly hit the right point. Once you believe on something or actions you made, it will make you harder to change it and accept the changes.
However, believes also can make people stronger and confidence If you believe in what you did, you will feel more confidence in yourself. This is what i believe :)

It very interesting to come across your article, it really an eye opener to me and thank you for sharing.

Thank you for reading and for your compliments. :)

I say, "I don't know" because I recognize that what I know is not the whole story of what unfolds before me. I say, "I don't know" to acknowledge that although I have collected some knowledge, experience and wisdom, my tiny little brain is simply no match for the universe.

I don't believe in religion but there are a lot of things that i don't understand. There must be answers out there somewhere but will they be answered in my lifetime? doubtful.

My only philosophy in life is to do what i want as long as it doesn't hurt anybody else. If i stick to that then i cant go too far wrong. After that everything else can just continue on.

I have a bit of that, too. I err on the side of peace.

It's the better way to go. We can all be a bit stupid when younger but most of us get a bit of sense as we get older.

Posted using Partiko Android

Congratulations! This post has been chosen as one of the daily Whistle Stops for The STEEM Engine!

You can see your post's place along the track here: The Daily Whistle Stops, Issue 258 (9/15/18)

Very cool and in fact I am impressed by the interesting of your post, because I tend to like more the type of posts that tend to have an illustrated support with them, however, with the right motivation, I decided to read this and wow! what a surprise, to see that you have a point of view of life that in many cases I share, because I think it is essential to always live with the open mind to accept that you do not have the answers to everything, and even when it comes to issues that you handle "perfectly" one definitely can not know everything.

Live without anguish, without anxiety, go that is the best way to carry things! very good post

The hardest part of life is living without regrets. "I don't know" makes that bit just a little easier.

I am glad that someone in this world has taken a step towards the path of self-improvement. That's great, the need to keep the mind at peace, without prejudice but at the same time open to other paths. Congratulations on your writing, a greeting, and many healthy vibes for you.

Thank you. I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one. :)

I agree to this line of thinking. It's the same thing I already believe in anyway and I'm also willing to let go if I don't know :D

I don't know how right I am or how wrong I am. There must be a degree of measuring the severity of my judgment, or should there be? I don't know. To never believe what is in front as the absolute and be open for other truths that may hold equivalent or no value. I think it's more of dealing with uncertainty and letting go of the idea that we can be certain about anything.

I don't even know that this reality is fabricated by someone or made by me. Was there even a predetermined method to test the hypothesis? What is certain is we end up questioning more than we could find answers to our questions and this just builds up more anxiety to pursue certainty to eliminate that anxiety. It doesn't make sense and I don't know if my sense is right.

Accepting the uncertainty as a part of life is how I avoid the anxiety. You might enjoy reading, "The Wisdom of Insecurity" by Alan Watts. That book is a major influence in much of my writing, as with this article, too.

Thanks for your comments.

WOW WOW AND THOUSAND TIMES WOW .. !! I loved your way of writing this story .. I understood everything you wanted to convey with this text .. It's interesting how you see life, without doubt this has been the most interesting text I've read for a few months here . The text is so interesting that it did not lack an image or a video that complements it. My most sincere congratulations for this great post.. Greetings @digitalfirehose

Thank you, @naideth. I'm glad you enjoyed it. I have a certain ambivalence about using pictures to attract readers as I like to allow my prose to stand on its own. Getting the headline right seems a bit of a challenge for me. I am always keen on finding a good hook for the headline.

It seems that I found a good for this article. :)

Thank you very much for your compliments.

And if she endured herself ... Thank you very much for showing us excellent work, a hug from Venezuela @digitalfirehose

We really do not know it all, but yet we keep living life and for us to live it fully, we have to learn to accept it fully (even the unpleasant situations). But while we don't know, we hope it all work out well, somehow.

We must accept that what we know is all that we know for now, that what we have is all that we have for now, and that how we feel is all that we feel for now.

Things might change, definitely. But before they do we have to learn to accept and live in the present.

Assuming we know when we truly don't know only closes our heart to a whole LOT of things that we could learn as we journey through life. I love this philosophy of yours, it opens way for learning, living loving and growth... Great piece!

Thank you for your compliments. I've paid dearly for unsupported beliefs and have found that releasing my beliefs has led to, at the very least, fewer disappointments. :)

Have fine day.

Oh true... I can very much understand how that philosophy has led to fewer disappointments,,

Thank you..

Coin Marketplace

STEEM 0.18
TRX 0.08
JST 0.023
BTC 26963.51
ETH 1877.84
USDT 1.00
SBD 2.12