This I Believe

Warren - Rye, New York
Entered on August 21, 2007
Age Group: 65+

This I Believe:

I believe in doubt.

Yes, I believe in doubt, and I put my trust in skepticism, for I have observed that much of the pain and suffering in this world is caused by those who think they know all the answers.

But I also believe in commitment, for while I may be ambivalent about eternal truths, I have not a moment’s uncertainty that cruelty and torture are wrong.

Further I believe in paradox, for I suspect that paradox brings us closest to whatever truths we’re capable of comprehending.

For instance:

I believe in the enjoyment of life, not because life is basically benign but precisely because it holds endless potential for disaster. And I believe that because we live in an indifferent universe, it is up to us to care for one another, for no one else will heal our wounds. Furthermore, as members of a species capable of unspeakable evil, it is up to us to seek values and ideals, not to vanquish evil – for that is beyond hope – but so that the good at least can hold its own.

And lastly the most basic paradox of all: that in a life certain to end in death, we must rely on ourselves to create meaning, for without meaning existence turns to dust.

So yes, I believe in doubt, for from doubt – not cynicism or despair but from honest doubt – flow all we will ever know of purpose, hope, and affirmation.