Gaia is the word for "unity-of-life-processes". The experiment here is to unify the various threads of voice and sense of self together into an undivided unity. Spirituality, economics, politics, science and ordinary life interleaved.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Towards an Essay on Reponsibility: Part Three, Responsible Confusion

"Taking responsibility" is jargon for a set of rituals between people that excite sociability around ethical standards. It other words, a fuzzy abstraction. What can I say about something so airy-fairy? Perhaps unfortunately, quite a lot!

I suggest three phases of taking responsibility. For clarity I will call them:

1- Confusion (and its advanced stage, confusion about confusion).
2- Ritual dramatisation (of confusion).
3- Disillusionment or graduation (into greater confusion).

Orientation: these three phases together relate responsibility to confusion. Responsible action can never be a stable a source of clarity. How I relate to confusion determines how well I take responsibility. It it not about acting in spite of feeling confused; it is about taking actions that honor and deepen the experience of confusion.

I recommend giving up on clarity altogether; it always was a pipe dream. The way forwards is through relating to confusion as the fundamental condition of living. Life is a mystery to be lived, as the poet Yeats says, not a problem to be solved.

May my life be a shrine to the utter confusion aroused by my responsive and attentive actions to reality.


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