V. The Truths We Live: It is Known
Where knowing becomes a barrier
The Things I Already Know, the Things Someone Else Already Said, the What Scientists Now Know refers those with whom we are speaking to the vault of our memory, which can be filled with many contradictory things. An element of knowledge or wisdom can be useful on its own, entertaining or practical for a given situation. It can also fit into a larger context of ideas, with different possibilities for the meanings or clarity it can lead to.
On the way to deeper clarity, we sometimes encounter anomalies or practical contradictions between things that are known. These are not always noticed because by default in discussions, merely knowing things allows us to take whatever position of authority or understanding will make us right already. These anomalies or contradictions suggest a larger context of relationships. What might be practical knowledge on one level, can be seen to be the root of a larger problem, on another level.
Race can be discussed by a person as if it is real, as if people can be it and at the same time, the same person can know it is a social invention. The larger context in which this contradiction becomes relevant is where it comes to cause and effect. To understand how it functions as an idea, shifts explanations from race, to the idea of it, which has practical implications for social problem solving, for instance.
In the case of this project, how standing by what I Already Know can limit a deeper process of discovery is that: what we know, and what we do are often two different things, so we sometimes receive messages, from nature, from other people, addressed to what we do, that are stopped at the gates of knowing.
Human actions take place within spheres of cause and effect. Personal, social, societal, environmental. Reality encompasses all scales, and all possibilities. When we get an unwanted effect, from what we do, this is reality on some level indicating misunderstandings and or consequences.
Our ability to avoid unwanted consequences is a test of the fitness of our systems, how well they take into account what is possible. To improve our results, the capacity to integrate and adjust to negative feedback is essential.
Knowledge can be a reflex, a place to which we can refer at our convenience. It can also be like a stone in a path toward something less obvious.
This isn’t suggesting more effort to make our deeds match our understandings. It is a message addressed to a very subtle tendency that would otherwise run rampant through this process. Subconsciously, we sense a threat to our worldview before we even realize what is being said and began to deploy an often contradictory arsenal of positions before we even know what is at stake, how the full arc of the discussion ultimately relates to our needs.
The alternate perspectives in this project are each like a premise that brings us down a different road. The choice this process is leading to is not between ideas or truths, but between ways of accessing them.
Because the following thought journeys often take the form of reminders, it would be easy to forget that they are addressed to the mindsets before remembering that people spend most of their time in. From here, its not yet possible to see where this is going, and the only way to have a chance, is to catch yourself knowing already, from where you currently stand.
We see our sense of value through what we know, but if pride leads us all to stand in place while the world is telling us to adapt then..
The world resolves itself, ultimately. Where humans will stand after is a matter of perspective.