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This I Believe: Certain Uncertainty for Betterment

December 12, 2012

What you’re about to read is a short piece from my university days, unearthed in light of the preceding post, Certain uncertainty: meaning, attachment and fiction. In my one and only university writing course, our teacher assigned us to writing a brief piece reflecting something we believe, inspired by NPR’s This I Believe series taking after a 1950s radio show of the same name that “engaged listeners in a discussion of the core beliefs that guide their daily lives. We heard from people of all walks of life — the very young and the very old, the famous and the previously unknown.”

This I believe:

In young years of childhood, kids in my town played outside more often than not, the television had three channels that each required tedious antenna positioning for adequate reception and we did not have cell phones. Generations close behind grew up in different scenarios, and now, within a mere decade or so generations are arising under more diverse conditions. This is roughly reviewing the past 30 years only, illuminating that humans have vast potential for change and adjustment to new standards.

Although recent additions to society appear to increase artificialization of culture, instilling technological, fast paced, material, and consumer based values in younger generations, there is a forceful counter culture arising that perceives the current cultural trend’s negative impacts and their implications if not acted on. I’m talking about people’s relationship with the natural and social environment in which they live. Not only does a relationship and consciousness of the environmental world we live instill positive values, but it also carries an awareness with the capacity to bring yet greater changes to society through harmonious lifestyle adaptations toward sustainable resiliency for the benefit of both those seeking purposeful work towards righting today’s social and environmental woes and of future generations.

The snowballing counter culture may continue gaining momentum, size and force to influence future change, or it could melt away in the warming glow of an small, yet powerful unsupportive minority. Past generations have overcome formidable obstacles and history has proved that people as individuals and a collective can readily adapt to diverse, volatile conditions. Many of my peers are full of aspiration and creativity, and I believe new ideals are spreading, leading to new generations of leaders who will make major changes in the world.

There is a mix of those accustomed to following today’s trends and those partaking in a ‘counter culture’ fighting to uproot predisposed beliefs inappropriate for today’s world as latent negative side-effects continue to surface and grow worse. While abundant ambiguity circulating environmental issues, which effect political, economic, and social realms ensues, it is important to be certain of one’s own uncertainty. We must live comfortably with uncertainty, in all aspects of life. A certain person is a fool, to quote Bertrand Russell. One will gain by accepting uncertainty, being inquisitive, and open to different opinions and ideas without diminishing their potential through relinquishing certainties inherently incapable of certitude.

Naturally, we all struggle with predispositions and form opinions based on such beliefs and convictions, but a world open to evolution and adaption to necessary change will arise by adapting a thought provoking, more rounded perspective on all matters by individually practicing certain uncertainty–enabling us to question all that exists, leading to innovative, inspired answers relevant to today and in turn, transforming engraved understandings while learning anew.

What personal philosophies and core values drive your daily life? What do you believe?

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