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Saturday, 7 December 2013

Certainty?

I want to be certain. But I do not want to be certain in such a way that I could not be made uncertain. Therefore I want really to be uncertain...

If I were certain and were stuck in my certainty, my certainty would be meaningless and a trap. To be certainly certain, to ensure certainty, my certainty would have to be such that all counter-proofs are accounted for in advance. In other words, to be certain to this degree I would have to be certain, in turn, that what I was first certain about could not be disproved. This is easily taken care of by setting the conditions just so, so that all evidence is confirmative evidence and even the very act of disproving becomes a proof – as in extreme paranoia.

But, if this is the case, my certainty would exist in a vacuum and it would be up to me and me alone to rescind my certainty. And if my certainty was sustained only by my own will, myself alone, it would be meaningless, in part because it would be meaningless to others. It could not be argued for; it could only insulate itself from refutation. And, besides, it would have at its heart uncertainty, for it would be necessarily blind to what sustains its certainty of certainty, and its certainty of its certainty of certainty, etc… which is, of course, only the personal will to certainty.

Therefore, the only way to be certain is to admit the possibility of being wrong. Hence, being certain goes by the name of uncertainty.


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