Personal reflections · Science and Philosophy

The Gray Area Problem

Fundamentalism may exist in a black-and-white world. But saying it’s full of the logical thinkers, and those outside it are in a murky cloud of gray with no sense of justice, is giving it way too much credit.

I know because I used logic, and I saw colors beyond my simplistic black-on-white battle lines.  It was hard to let go.

It was hard to realize sometimes emotions can’t be explained. It was hard to find out the evils of the outside world weren’t a threat, and there were threats inside. It was hard to look back on what I’d thought were careful, wise choices in my life and saw fragmented sharp pieces. It was hard to learn to live in paradox, and to exist between what I once thought were right and wrong. Most of all, it was hard to suffer betrayal and to lose companions when I chose this journey.

I’m realizing the gray areas weren’t gray at all. They’re not a sickening mixture of black and white, confusing wrong and right. I’m realizing infinity is more vibrant than black, white, or a mixture of the two.

I’m exploring, but I grow weary. It seems easier to go back, but I’m so far from anything I once knew as home. Nothing fits. I’m tired of floating in the in-between. But I’m flying or swimming here, I can’t tell which, because the atmosphere is rich. My mode of travel isn’t walking anymore. Finding my balance, learning to ground myself, takes muscles I didn’t know I had, and I’m so sore. I want to rest, but the only rest I found before was in certainty, and I’m not certain as I once was.

Wrong and right still separate here, they just look different than I thought they would. Injustice is even darker than black. The things I thought were black aren’t, now that I can see their colors, reflecting back light instead of casting a shadow. Justice is not mere white, but it is a fractal of colors, purity itself, casting rainbows with its fractured prism. Justice prevails in the face of injustice, and I see colors scatter.

That’s why we were taught to fear gray areas, right? You can’t tell what’s right and wrong when black and white bleed into each other. But what if, in exploring, we soared into a new dimension altogether, a perception that saw more and not less? Maybe the “gray area” problem was invented by people who exist in a dimension where they can only see two not-colors.

I’m not saying I see all of it. I can’t comprehend even what I do see. I’m learning to exist here, and I keep testing and growing. There are still colors I’ve never seen.

I’m finding safety in what I was told would be my end.  It was a risk, climbing up into this dimension. I was told I’d find only gray confusion here. That’s all it looks like from the world of black and white. I was confused, but I haven’t abandoned reason. Exploration brings with it the risk of discovery. I’ve left my pride behind, because if I saw so little in that black-and-white dimension, perhaps I’m also seeing only a little here in this dimension of color. I look up and hope there’s even more beyond.