We Don’t Know Very Much, And That’s Okay

According to quantum mechanics (my limited understanding of it), approximately 96% of the universe is “dark matter” and “dark energy”. We can’t see it and we don’t know what it is. The remaining 4% is made up of observable atoms, and those atoms appear to be 99.99% empty space. Even the tiny particles within the atom (the 0.01%) behave like waves when not observed. In other words, our perception of reality is very different from what reality actually is. 

We want to have all of the answers. We want to know what life is all about. We should have at least a sense of the purpose of life, but it’s supposed to be mostly a mystery (at least for now). As neuroscientist David Eagleman wrote, “your mental life is built to range over a certain territory, and it is restricted from the rest. There are thoughts you cannot think.”

The irony is that in our later years we end up knowing less than we did in our younger years. In other words, when we are young we think we know everything, but in our later years we realize that we know very little. And that is true Knowing — to know that you don’t know, and being okay with that.