Cloud of Unknowing
I have less and less to say.
This is because of acknowledging the brutal fact about knowing. Which is to say, about NOT knowing.
Self inquiry leads to the perception of one’s identity as a moving target, sometimes here and other times there, sometimes seeming more reliable and trustworthy, other times less so or not at all.
“I” watch this in amazement and consternation, often feeling that existence itself is a pretty mean trick of the universe.
Did I ever ask to be the subject of such a cosmic joke, to be at once so ill defined and incompetent, yet also responsible for everything that happens?
Eventually one has to simply say those hardest of words:
This immediately produces the judgment of ignorance and stupidity. Maybe the person to whom the admission is addressed is kind or courteous enough not to suggest this (though not always).
Regardless, one feels it must be true, for in falling past the conjectural mind it becomes altogether manifest that we know absolutely nothing. Not so much as how to take the next step or digest lunch, to say nothing of determining who is worthy to be elected to public office.
That ancient text, “The Cloud of Unknowing,” describes the path toward God as coming to see, with infinite pain, that no human knowledge is capable of bringing one into the presence of the divine.
“So oft, he goeth nigh mad for sorrow. Insomuch, the he weepeth and waileth, striveth, curseth, and banneth; and shortly to say, him thinketh that he beareth so heavy a burden of himself that he careth never what betides him, so that God were pleased.”
So there it is.