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.