The World ALWAYS Makes Sense

When was the last time you felt like this boy:

(Disclaimer: I like square roots. I think maths is awesome.)

We have all had our fair share of saying / hearing the likes of:

  • “This doesn’t make sense.”
  • “I wish it made more sense.”
  • “How can I make sense of this thing?”
  • “Nothing makes sense!”
  • ….you get the idea

Here is the good news: (A) The world always makes sense. As every good news feels lonely without its companion – the bad news – bear in mind that when you feel something doesn’t make sense, (B) what is not making sense is your model of the world.

Note to logical hygiene freaks: Some of you may immediately challenge – “Hey but what you said does not make sense! If both statements (A) & (B) hold, then the logical conclusion is (C) your “model of the world” is exterior to (not part of) “the world,” which is self-defeating if the world encompasses every living organism – your brain (and by extension, your mind) is part of the world.

Fair enough, 5 bonus points if that matters. And now we move on. And yes, I am saying regardless of whether the challenge makes sense or not, I am moving on as if it doesn’t. 🙂

If statements (A) and (B) sound abstract, you may find this analogy below helpful:

Here is what a cylinder looks like in different contexts:

  • 3D environment: cylinder
  • 2D projection: square / circle depending on the angle of projection

In the 2D world, which is a one-dimensional reduction of the cylinder, we could say that both the square & the circle are “true ‘slices’ of the reality of the cylinder; neither alone give a clear sense of the higher dimensional shape’s reality.” This is inevitable because “they are reducing the reality (without realizing it) to a view that simply can not adequately contain it.

How should we deal with the seemingly contradiction of square vs. circle? I think Daniel Schmachtenberger nailed it:

The problem of course is in the reductionism. There is no 2D slice of a 3D object that gives a real sense of what it is. Neither is any 2D negotiation of slices going to yield something in 3D. The cylinder is not somewhere between the two reductionistic views: 50% circle, 50% rectangle… It is 100% of both descriptions…which are only mutually exclusive and paradoxical if they are trying to be reconciled in the same plane, which is the essential mistake.
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In the higher dimensional reality the object (cylinder) actually lives in, the simultaneous full truth of both partial descriptions (square & circle) is obvious and non-paradoxical…as is the seamless way they fit together as parts of a congruent whole.

Daniel Schmachtenberger, Higher Dimensional Thinking, the End of Paradox, and a More Adequate Understanding of Reality

Blog recommendation: I highly recommend Daniel’s blog Civilization Emerging for some mind-opening posts. In addition, check out his recommended readings on various topics.

To conclude: when we think the world doesn’t make sense, what doesn’t make sense is our interpretation of it – it could that we are futilely trying to find a 2D explanation that 100% fits a 3D problem, which means we inevitably end up with (i) a paradox that cannot be reconciled and / or (ii) a puzzle that cannot be explained, and (iii) a messed-up mind. Note that I used “and / or” vs. “and” – because (iii) is a “gift” that you are 100% guaranteed to get.

To end with a sentence that I hope makes sense: It’s never too late to make sense of how we are making sense of the world, which always makes sense when analyzed under the model that makes the best sense.