The importance of being wrong

It was a long process from beginning to end to come to grips with the matter and then stating publicly that I was convinced by writings and a movie that John Lennon’s 1980 shooting was a fake event, that he may in fact still be alive, and was for certain alive in 2008.

That’s not important, although crossing that little bridge from absolute belief to uncertainty would benefit everyone. It would lead to that side of the river where nothing can be taken at face, where everything is held open to question. That’s a good way to live.

But people, for the most part, cannot deal with that. They want certainty. Life offers very little of it.

People are layered beasts, most projecting phony images. Other than our small circle of friends, with whom he can be candid, there’s very little honesty in the world. There is no honesty in politics, and news is almost always fake. Virtually everything that comes to us via the TV screen is a concocted lie in some form, save perhaps weather forecasts. (Ah, but sporting events are genuine!  I have no reason to think that true. There is, after all, large money at stake. That leaves it open to question.)

That makes life both interesting and unpredictable. It leaves us to our own devices to understand things. We have no one we can trust.

Knowing that, it is important to understand that we can be fooled, that we can be wrong. That is not big deal. Once fooled, we can be un-fooled. We are always in a  state of flux. Life is about movement towards truth, not arrival there. When we happen upon a truth, as I did about Lennon and so many other fake events, it’s just a sign we are on the right road, but there still await may choices of turns and dead ends.

That last little paragraph above has helped me understand so much, and will continue to be my guiding light – that I have been wrong, have been fooled, and will be again and again as I move forward. On the day that I stop doubting and start trusting, I will also stop moving forward.

I know many people who never admit error about anything. They are usually wrong about just about everything.

About Mark Tokarski

Just a man who likes to read, argue, and occasionally be surprised.
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4 Responses to The importance of being wrong

  1. Luckyman says:

    Having come from a “fundementalist” background, I remember what an epiphany it was for me to come to the realization that THE highest value for fundamentalism (of any strripe) is to be right or correct while any contrary belief/position held by someone else just had to be wrong, no matter what evidence might be presented.
    It is the highest height of PRIDE/arrogance/hubris. (I AM RIGHT! YOU ARE WRONG!) The irony is, “fundamentalists” can then become the opposite of what they percieve themselves to be. (But I could be mistaken about some of the foregoing in some way).
    The world is not ALL black and white. There are some things certain of course, but the fundamentalist mindset has varying degrees of blindnes to the possibility of degree, shading, abiguity or even possibility itself. It appears to me that it is the “fundamentalist” (of all kinds) mindset that is leading mankind into a new dark age.

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    • Wow – a fundamentalist background is really hard to overcome … like being a Mormon – you don’t grow out of it so much as escape. I was from a very devout Catholic family, and went to Catholic schools for twelve years and totally bought in because it was all I was exposed to – in grade school they even let us out fifteen minutes early so that we did not mix with the public school kids one block away.

      It is kind of like our American indoctrination system – it’s not that people aren’t smart enough to figure it out, but they are totally enclosed by the propaganda, so that everything they read and hear from NPR to FOX to television to newspapers to movies to websites like Huffington Post carries the same message. You don’t grow out of it – you have to escape.

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      • Luckyman says:

        I use the term “fundamentalist” in a general sense. There are all kinds of fundamentalism,
        religous (all religions have fundamentalists who fight among themslves and with others in the religion) economic, political, systemic, (this is the way its always been done, any other way is wrong) etc. It is a mindset. We all want to believe we are RIGHT. Many do not understand as you do that no one can always be right. That others may know things we dont and we can be wrong and need to be willing to admit it and change our minds about things.

        My “escape” was gradual. It began when I went in the service in 1972 and was not complete until I fell in love with another woman in 1994, got divorced in 1998 after 24 years of marriage and married the “other” woman in 2005. All along the way there were always things in life that did not fit with what I was taught and thought I believed about how things were and should be. It was a process. It was in 2002-2003 that I woke up to the fact that our government and country was as corrupt as could be and EVERYTHING had to be questioned. Much of our corruption is due to a “fundamentalist” mindset, with PRIDE at the center of it all.
        But why should we be proud?? None of us have anything that we did not receive in some way or another.

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        • That’s a good path! You need to know that many people travel it but do not learn the lessons on the way. You are the exception. Nice work, and by the way, retirement is challenging, but fun.

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