Gray Areas

My housemates and I just got into a rather brilliant discussion. We all seemed to disagree on a particular issue, and we voiced our perspectives, heard the other side, gave rebuttals, etc. The subject matter is unimportant. The subject matter is not what I gained the most from. The most important thing that I derived from it is this: no opinion is perfect.

Every opinion has its pitfalls. That’s why I have a hard time committing to anything, or telling people that they’re wrong. True, there are several things that I value and certain opinions I hold that I refuse to compromise on; that’s what makes me the unique person that I am. But there are many things that I am on the fence about. Almost everything, in fact.

I’ve realized that this is because, in most cases, I can’t say with confidence that one solution is any better than another. If I had all the research and all the evidence that proved beyond a sliver of a doubt that one way was wholly better than the other, I would be able to make my decision with surety. But unfortunately, most controversial issues are not so simple. And I feel that to commit to a decision without hard evidence from all sides in favor of that decision is – from a scholarly perspective – reckless and irresponsible.

If my education has taught me nothing else, it’s to never take anything at face value. Life is multi-faceted. Everything you encounter in life came into existence only after hundreds of millions of variables collided in an inconceivably unique way, molding and forming this thing in front of you from nothingness. Nothing is truly simpleand to treat things like they are simple is to be dishonest with one’s self.

I love learning. I do it best when my mind is open. I want to take everything in. I want to learn and understand every perspective to the best of my ability. I want my mind to be a blank slate, ready for each space to be filled with beautiful, complex, diverse knowledge. I want to do this so that when I’m old, I can die knowing that I lived a well-rounded, full life. Every gray area explored. No stone unturned.

I think my parents would be proud of that life. I think my children would be proud of that life. And most importantly, I think I could proud of that life.

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