Will a better awareness of our ignorance help?

August 2006. Reviewed and revised November 20, 2014

What kind of a question is this?

In what directions does this question flow?

It assumes I know what I am doing. But I do not even know what I want to do—though I am totally capable of doing it.

Is my concern my personal ignorance, or is my concern our collective human ignorance.

It would not be difficult to persuade you I am ignorant. A few choice remarks should do the trick. But I want to convince you that, like Socrates, my ignorance, if you will, is exemplary.

To do that, I must first convince of of my knowledge is exemplary, or at least worthwhile. How would I do that?

Through my attitude, and my sentences, and my ability to hold your interest.

Working notes and thinking points:

  • Let us assume I am able to present, successfully, a theory of fuzzy words and salutary ignorance. It won't stop most hot-heads or teenagers, but will this help another person, say, someone like you.
  • What is the import of these ideas?
  • What would be the import of correct philosophical answers?
  • No. The answer is that "correct philosophical answers" is a conceptual|grammatical illusion.
  • Perhaps we are constantly at risk for this illusion. So one can feel superior because one does not make the mistake of jumping to conclusions? How then should one reply to all those who do? Or how can we convince them to not?
  • Try to talk them out of it, using legitimate considerations.
  • This may be good interesting considerations for me, and people like me, but what about the large mass of mankind. Are they stuck being human in the bad sense of that word? What if they get no happiness from philosophizing?
  • There are questions I will not answer, or where my response is "Well _______ is a fuzzy word."
  • So, one can live without answers to these questions, or, equally, one can live with contradictory answers to such questions.
  • Perhaps we are better off not thinking about this at all. So much of life will have to be re-assessed. And I have no answers there, except a personal one for myself.

Best answer:

So... anything goes?
No. Nothing goes.
And so much follows (and does not follow) from this.

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