Friday, 22 February 2013

Rational Madness

Will Storr in his book: The Heretics thinks out loud about his beliefs. I think he speaks eloquently for most if not all of us.
I consider - as everyone surely does - that my opinions are the correct ones. And yet, I have never met anyone whose every single thought I agreed with. When you take these two positions together, they become a way of saying 'Nobody is as right in as many things as me.' And that cannot be true. Because to accept that would be to confer upon myself a Godlike status. It would mean that I possess a superpower: a clarity of thought that is unique among humans. Okay, fine. So I accept that I am wrong about things - I must be wrong about them. A lot of them. But when I look back over my shoulder and I double check what I think about religion and politics and science and all the rest of it,... well I know I'm right about that... and that... and that and that and - it is usually at this point I start to feel strange. I know that I am not right about everything, and yet I am simultaneously convinced that I am. I believe these two things completely, and yet they are in catastrophic logical opposition to each other.

It is as if I have caught a glimpse of some grotesque delusion I am stuck inside. It is disorientating. It is frightening. And I think it is true to say it it not just me - that is - we all believe that we are right about everything and by extension we are all wrong.

1 comment:

Roy the Beard said...

When people agree with me, I always assume I must have gone wrong somewhere! And when I stop asking myself the next question, that will be the day I die.