Bigness

Thinkpieces. Treatises. Screeds. I’ve been spending so much of my time on a couple humongous projects and reading so much long-form writing on the web, that I’d gotten it into my head that it’d only be worth writing something for the blog if it was big enough. Definitive enough. Certain.

And I admit, there are things in my drafts folder that I thought shouldn’t see the light of day, not because they’re half baked, but because the writing tries out a set of ideas that might be uncomfortable or unpopular.

What if that make it hard for me to advance in the ways I’d like? Five years from now, what if that is held against me out of context? What winds will be blowing? The social-media-sphere loves to publicly destroy professors for speaking about unorthodox things. Incidentally, this is how really efficient censorship works. Don’t just silence a thought, but shut it down before it even enters the world. 

There’s a place for certainty, it’s important to be plant a flag and be definitive about a thought or concept. To stand for something. But nowadays it’s even more important to try on a thought or an idea or a belief, just to see how it fits. Try and let the thought run its course. You can always take it off and throw it away.

We might even learn to understand people we’re supposed to hate.