The interactions of Layers upon Layers

Good Evening, God!

I’ve been running over the various times in which the experts have ridiculed the ideas that threatened their world view — indeed, threatened their sense of self — their psychic safety.

Florence Nightingale said that the doctors would like to have had her burned at the stake like Joan of Arc. And that just for wanting good fresh air, sunlight and soap for the patients.

Dr. Semmelweiss was ridiculed and hounded into an insane asylum for noticing that more women died of childbed fever in the hospital when attended by doctors who had just come from doing autopsies. He just urged them to wash their hands.

Alfred Wegener suggested “Continental Drift” in 1912 and was ridiculed by his fellow scientists. It would take 50 years for Plate Tectonics to be accepted. And on and on it goes.

Going against Conventional Wisdom is risky. Or maybe it is just CERTAINTY that is risky? I am not humble by nature but as I pay attention — it is not that hard to see that ALL is not yet known. Worse yet, I (like most of us) undoubtedly hold views that make it next to impossible for me to assemble what I do know into a coherent whole. I am severely limited — constrained — by family and cultural norms.

Yet, I am curious. I love moving the “dots” around . . . and around. And I am perhaps a bit of a contrarian by nature. So, God, please help me to keep on asking questions; questioning assumptions; and being open to being wrong. My being wrong. And experts being wrong. All this as we grapple with understanding the difference between complicated and complex. I love this discussion of the difference.

Lastly, help me remember the vast proliferation of unintended consequences. Then there is (I think) Jay Forrester’s quote: in a complex system you almost always get the opposite of the result you intend. And each one of us is a “complex system”. Ah, please, God, more humility!

Story teller,

Posted in being wrong, Certainty, Changing, choices, complexity, connecting, humility, Humility or Needing Help!, paradigm shifts

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