One of the strongest arguments for faith to me, has always been the presence of doubt. Acknowledging that the belief you hold on to only works in the presence of doubt is an essential component to authentically holding that belief. Faith needs doubt to exist. I distrust any belief system that has no room for doubt. To my mind, such as system is just nonsense.

Doubt, though, on its own – not in the presence of faith, but of certainty. Consider: I must be certain about, for example, gravity. I must be certain it will hold to embark on any activity – or even to stand still. So, then there is no room for doubting that gravity will anchor me to this planet. It is just a certainty.

So what if then there is doubt? About things such as those that anchor us, that tether us to the life we’ve chosen.

In the context of gratitude, how do I reconcile being unfettered in the presence of things that are certain Рthat I have always believed to be certain? Do I become grateful for the object of my certainty, or the doubt about that object. Surely not both. I cannot quite hold to the idea of both, simultaneously. And yet that seems to be what is demanded.

I am exhausted with arriving at an understanding, a knowledge, a certainty, and finding that ripped from grasp.

But here, yes, I am grateful for even just this: that I am never just one thing, but many.

Gratitude 5: the human mastery of being opposites at the exact same time.


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