Sunday, May 13, 2012

IGNORANCE: TO JUDGE OR NOT TO JUDGE?


I've been reading a long, somewhat confusing thread on ignorance and have distilled these thoughts:

I've concluded (for the time being) that there are two kinds of ignorance. (1) ignorance of ignorance, and (2) awareness of ignorance. I might be mistaken but it seems that those 2 categories cover all types of ignorance. And I think that we cannot be faulted for our ignorance unless it is willful.

I do allow myself to feel disgust of ignorance, but not of the "Ignorant" (though I'm not always successful).

What is the best way to think about ignorance? We cannot examine ignorance without considering another concept called "judgment".

I believe strongly that we cannot fully know others, therefore, we cannot accurately judge others. You might say,  "I know myself better, therefore, I can judge myself."  Well, yes and no. Because we are not objective, can we really know ourselves? Because we live in denial (and need to in order to survive), can we fairly judge ourselves?

Interestingly, the Bible says, "Judge not, lest ye be judged." (One of the wisest
statements found in that book, I think.) It doesn't say, "You can judge yourself, but not others."

Because judgment includes concluding what is desirable or not, what is good or not, we risk condemning others (AND ourselves). Considering we all have limitations to understanding ourselves and others, judging has no place in a happy society.

"Ahhh, what about making decisions?" you ask.  "You need to differentiate, use critical thinking skills, come to some conclusion."  Yes, yes, yes.  But we need not judge; we need only decide on what we believe is best for us--and for society, if that is a role that is freely given and accepted.

Absolute, extreme, black and white thinking, poor ego strength, and a host of other aspects all contribute to poor judgments.  

And, as humans, we are just too ignorant to make valid judgments most of the time.

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