Thursday, June 23, 2016

On Depth

One thing that reflecting this week has brought to my attention is that I lack depth.

I lack of depth of knowledge - about my career, about my family, about my varying hobbies, even about God.

Oh, I have a great deal of knowledge, some of it rather detailed.  I study a lot of things.  I have a lot of experience.  But what I find is that I missing the depth that it would feel like such study and experience should bring.

Depth is frightening to me, of course.  Depth indicates that one is going to take a period of time - years, in most cases - to really come to understand a subject.  In some cases, it means sacrificing new information in exchange for concentrating on the things that are currently in one's life.

Perhaps make my Rule of Five started this process. For the first time in perhaps a long while - maybe ever - I have a road map of the sorts of things that I want to spend the rest of my life working on.  It is right there: the subject, and by extension the knowledge about the subject.

Take my career, for example.  I have done it over 18 years now.  But do I really know what I should know about it?  Or do I too often skate around the fringes, trying not to burden myself too much with knowing about something that I perceive as not being that relevant to my life?  (Except, of course, it pays for everything).

Depth is costly.  Depth means that investment - perhaps of money, most certainly of time - needs to made.  It is road of choices, of moving beyond the off ramps because the thing has not been pursued to its limit.

Rhetorical question:  What would it look like if I took the items on my Rule of Five and subjected them to a depth test, a listing of what I really needed to know to exhaust the issue, to become an expert?  Not for the sake of being recognized as such of course, but to truly come to a knowledge of these things?

I know the answer, of course.  Investment of time.  Investment of energy.  A willingness and a commitment to persevere until the knowledge is obtained, the expertise achieved.

Rhetorical question two:  And what would such a thing feel like, to truly know instead of knowing around the fringes?

Rhetorical question three;  If insane is defined as doing the same thing again and again and expecting a different outcome, why do I choose to pursue insanity?


John Wooldridge said...

Tis difficult to answer your rhetorical questions TB as I myself find that I lack 'depth' and am at this very moment trying to 'solidify' my life's path.

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

Thanks John. It bothers me the more I think about it. Have I just lost the ability to think deeply, or is it that I never truly possessed it?