On (un)certainty

I’ve been accused of being arrogant. I know that, from time to time (or maybe always) I write with a certain… authoritativeness. I’m definitely confident (you know, except when I’m not).

But recently, I’ve been thinking about certainty. About the tendency of people to believe they know things. The Buddha has occasionally been quoted (more or less accurately) as saying, “People with opinions just go around bothering one another.” (It seems likely what he said was something more like, “Those who cling to perceptions and views wander the world offending people,” but whatever – close enough.)

I’m struck by the certainty of others. About world events. About one another. About themselves. If there’s one characteristic of mine that I think (hope) is ubiquitous throughout what I write, it’s uncertainty. It’s curiosity, openness. The willingness to imagine that whatever I think might well be 180 degrees wrong.

I can’t always sustain the degree of uncertainty I’d like. Read my thoughts on creep shots, for example, where I think, even though I adjusted my behavior, and changed some of my thinking about it, I remain pretty resolutely inseparable from my view that a) people think magically about photography, and b) magical thinking doesn’t translate into a right to be protected from its implications.

But there’s no surer way to turn me off – sexually, sure, but intellectually, too – than to think you know something. The only thing I know, for sure, is that right now, my cock is hard. 😉

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