(Photo taken in a pub on Albert Road, Portsmouth)
Apologies for the title – it’s what the auto correct was certain I wanted to say when I tried to type certainly.
There are too many people that think they are right. Google’s AI is one of them…
That wonderful soaring of the soul as you realise something is right, feels like a mystical experience. We see the wonder of learning every day in our classrooms.
We however know that despite our pupil’s ardent protestations of absolutes, we understand a wider perspective on the issue than 7c and have developed our understanding beyond theirs. That’s why it is us teaching them. They are right about what they have just looked at, however when we approach further information their perspective develops and prior truths are replaced with new versions.
Is certainty our primary objective as human beings?
Should a quest to be certain about everything be our ultimate goal? I think certainty is the death of further thought. “I know that” implies we no longer question the facts. We have stopped thinking about it. “I think that” is a much better place to start.
Who provides these unquestionable facts? History is written by the winners, right? Not anymore. History is written and is being written by everyone. We write it daily. These facts are always opposed with others.
In VALIS, Phillip K Dick describes a construct of the universe where “We are not individuals. We are stations in a single Mind.”
The Internet is becoming that mind. We feed it daily with more and more. We have our own unique IP address. One day will this network become sentient?
Are we building a God?
Does that basic human compulsion for certainty mean that in the same way the Cannanites collected and then melted gold to form a calf – in the Internet we are building an all-knowing ever-present sentient-being with control over our lives. We are building a God. We can be certain then that there is reason to our existing. We existed before the Internet to build the Internet, then we live to serve the Internet.
How many people live their lives worshiping at the shrine of Internet hits, Internet search results, praying at the click of a button?
That soul souring feeling is what is leading us into the forging of further shackles. Are we building a response to that mystical urge without realising the impact it will have. We have stopped thinking about it because we are certain.
People are certain they are right. That soul souring feeling told them so.
7c thought they were right, and based on their information sources they were.
It would be wrong to prioritise that soul souring feeling of their absolute certainty over teaching them more about the subject and finding more out yourself.
There are no absolutes, other than all of them and none of them. We should be certain in our own understanding but always aware that there is more to know. Certainly not certain we are absolutely right.