By Letter to the Editor on October 13, 2021.
I think that over-emphasis on accuracy, correctness, or precision is a source of unnecessary anxieties, disputes, and divisions.
We waste countless hours fighting over trivial things, causing break-up of communities and relationships.
Fighting could be deadly when it comes to customs, ideologies, politics, and religious doctrines. Humans have killed each other even about clothes and other stupid small things. As time passes, many of those disputes begin to look silly. We are one family sharing the same space on a relatively small planet. Can we not get along without fighting? Can we not live with ambiguity until you can see it more clearly?
Japanese are sticklers for punctuality but we know how to live with ambiguity. We rarely say “No.” Instead, we say something like “Yeah, but.” A correct answer can wait if it causes a break-up of a relationship.
The Japanese language does not have definite articles or indefinite articles. So I had no idea what the fuss was all about when elected delegates in a church assembly spent many hours debating passionately if the Bible is a foundation or the foundation of faith.
It was at a United Church’s highest decision making court called “General Council.” Me? I would be happy if it is approximately close to whatever I believe in.
I don’t apologize for my views that are fuzzy on the edges because flexibility lets us avoid needless quarrel. We live in ambiguity for awhile until mist dissipates and an answer presents itself.
Time will tell. Why fight?
Everything is relative. A veterinarian’s examination room has a sign, “A year for a human is six years for a cat. When you go away for a week, your cat will miss you for six weeks.” One minute is just like a flash.
But two minutes silence at the Remembrance Day ceremony feels like eternity. When you get old, time flies away too fast. But when you are a teenager waiting for a girlfriend at a bus stop, time feels like forever. It’s all relative.
Time is uneven. Also there is no such thing as an absolutely straight line, because the earth is round.
The shortest straight line between point A to point B is curved. What seems like reality for you may not exist.
A star visible now could be billions of light-years away. So it could be billions of years old. It may no longer exist.
Nobody knows what’s real or true for sure. So why fight and hate people who think differently?
I am happy I live in Canada where we no longer burn a heretic at the stake.
Tadashi (Tad) Mitsui