As an experiment, I thought I’d see if I really knew anything with absolute certainty. This might help unmuddy the waters and trim away the fat.
When I look deeply at what I know absolutely, I find precious little. I can’t say for sure if my own ideas about myself are true. In fact, I suspect that they probably aren’t. I also don’t know for sure if what I think about others has any accuracy. Again, I’d put my money on pretty much everything that I think about other people as being biased, untrue and based on my own subjective interests, likes and dislikes.
I don’t really know if others like me or not. And my likes and dislikes for others are so subject to alteration depending on how they treat me, that I can’t really draw an absolute conviction as to how I stand with respect to my affections or disaffections for them.
I’m not sure if anyone really understands anything I say. And I certainly can’t be sure I understand others, even though I often act like I do.
When I really look, I can’t actually find an opinion I have about anything that I know to be true with absolute certainty. I suppose that’s why they are just opinions.
Even on this issue of what I really know, I lack complete certainty. Maybe there are some things I do know with absolute conviction, but I just can’t think of them right now. Then again, maybe not.
If I were forced to put my money on one thing I was certain about, I guess the only thing it would be is that I am a conscious, aware being. But on further examining this proposition, I find that I’m not completely sure what I mean by “I.” Nor am I completely certain exactly what “am” means either.
All right, then. I guess the only thing I can be sure of is awareness itself. Its depth, breath, borders or boundaries, its origin, duration or exact nature escape me. But at least I know that awareness is. If it weren’t, I could not even discuss it. Even if I don’t know what awareness is, it’s the one thing I’ve got for certain, and I’m sticking with it.