Life tends to present increasingly more-complex issues. The more willing we are to prepare to face change and challenge, the better we will be equipped to understand what’s going on when we are faced with new experiences and new problems.
Retreating to my best profound apology, I sat, held her hand, and offered several over-careful positive comments. She let me off the hook. We sat quietly for a while. I gave her a weak smile and a weak kiss on the cheek before retreating to lick my wounds.
I’ve been carrying this quote around since high school: “There are people who think in a way which I would simply call “accurate” thinking. They are people with persistent, highly controlled intellectual habits. These people can be recognized by four characteristics:
We tend to laugh at the unexpected… even tragic. Successful comedians usually find a vein of experience or a characteristic point of view to identify their brand. Life is rich and full of absurdity in our personal flaws and our external experience. It all makes for good comedy.
I suspect that Secretary Rumsfeld was giving a short treatise on the “fog of war.” Military commanders must constantly grapple with the necessity of making critical decisions in an environment of high ambiguity. They become accustomed to rigorously evaluating what they know and do not know, what is knowable and not.
I don’t begrudge “Tea Party” sympathizers their frustrated state of mind. Times are hard and they have been getting harder for the last several decades – along with the pace of change. Everybody is struggling and unhappy.
We must be open to continual growth and development as individuals, communities and societies. Our shared ability to accept changing situations and create new responses is our greatest survival resource.
Initially, large data sets were only imagined to be of use for business marketing or government surveillance. Now, new kinds of databases and query languages are able to digest unimaginable quantities of event records and find important and useful patterns where any human would only see random noise.
When we owe something, we should attend to repaying it. Further, it is wrong to expect leniency if we ourselves are impatient and demanding. However, individuals should not be reduced to intractable permanent poverty. However, many cultures institutionalize forgiveness of both moral and economic debts. For instance, the Law of Moses to the Jews directed that there be a periodic “Jubilee” year in which certain debts were to be forgiven.