Paradox

paradox
n.

  1. A seemingly contradictory statement that may nonetheless be true
  2. One exhibiting inexplicable or contradictory aspects
  3. An assertion that is essentially self-contradictory, though based on a valid deduction from acceptable premises.
  4. A statement contrary to received opinion.
___________________________________________

It is my contention that being able to embrace paradox is a fundamental aspect of trying to fathom the Nature of the Universe. It is, afterall, an infinite thing and we are finite beings, grasping at straws, really.

Too often we try to limit all experience into rational, logical blocks - while stripping away something of it's essence and complexity. This is our failing - our limitation - in trying to understand something beyond our ken.

It's not that the Universe is necessarily contradictory, it's just that we tend to only be able to look at things one way or the other. We perceive order or disorder... we perceive artistically or scientifically... so on and so forth... but our perceptions are inherently limited and subjective.

I try to find the middle-ground... trying to syncretize opposing beliefs and find where and how they can fit, in a way that my understanding can allow for. Part of this is the simple realization that I may not be able to understand everything from a purely logical position. Some things you have to 'feel' or intuit. Some things you have to experience, and only your own personal gnosis will let you feel how something can be, even though your mind still can't grasp it.

This is the beauty of allowing paradox. The ability to sit back and say, "Yeah, it seems to contradict itself, but only because you're only seeing one side of a multi-dimensional thing. If we could see more, we'd understand it better." It acknowledges and works with our limitations, instead of ignoring them - and this is also key.

Too many times people mistake the piece for the Whole. They read metaphors literally, take theories for facts, and dismiss every other myriad possibility. This will get us no where...

Now I'm not saying science isn't useful. Nor am I anti-logic. I believe in balance, which means I use logic and intuition... science and art. Both, and more, are parts of the human experience. To deny the validity of either is to lose the overall meaning, and that has hindered us for far too long.

Now, I know that not everyone will read this and agree. There are a good deal of people who are far too accustomed to a black and white mentality, where something is either right or wrong, and there is no inbetween. And it's hard to describe the feeling of being tapped into the Universe and feelings it power pulsate at your fingertips and feel connected to everything... and yet feel individual, and oh so pathetically small and insignificant. But that's what we are... forever a part of the larger, powerful Whole just at our fingertips, and also a small piece of that Whole, tiny and seeminly unimportant.

But hey - you're everything to some, and nothing to most. It's really nothing different from what we experience every day of our nice, normal, rational and mundane lives...

Just bigger...


"The opposite of a fact is falsehood,
but the opposite of one profound truth
may very well be another profound truth.
~Niels Bohr



"The paradox is really the pathos of intellectual life
and just as only great souls are exposed to passions
it is only the great thinker who is exposed
to what I call paradoxes,
which are nothing else than
grandiose thoughts in embryo.

~Soren Kierkegaard

"No, no, you're not thinking;
you're just being logical.
~Niels Bohr



"How wonderful that we have met with a paradox.
Now we have some hope of making progress.
~Niels Bohr