It has been a year of diverse experiences globally, but one experience that most of us agree on is that this was indeed a year of global doubt. Uncertainty is something that most of us experienced wherever we were – whether it has been doubts about health, work, family, international affairs, economy or planning it was and still is a massive reality. The global pandemic created an uncertain open-endedness or has left us with little ability to plan for 2021. The plans that we made a year ago turned out totally different, didn’t it?
American Jungian psychoanalyst, author and public speaker James Hollis has a different view on doubt:
Doubt is a profound and effective spiritual motivation. Without doubt, no truism is transcended, no new knowledge found, no expansion of the imagination is possible. Doubt is unsettling to the ego and those who are drawn to ideologies that promise the dispelling of doubt by preferring certainties never grow.
Yes, when we experience doubt, we often discover truth and faith in something or someone bigger than us. Through doubt, new knowledge emerges and we are forced to be creative – the best entrepreneurial moments often derive from doubt and uncertainty. Doubt often tears us away from the certainty that the ego makes us believe. In my conversations this year I’ve heard stories on how 2020 created self-doubt for individuals, couples that suddenly had too much time and doubted their relationship, children doubting whether they will pass their schoolyear and faith communities doubting God and plans and calling. Uncertainty everywhere!
It is my prayer that we will be able to use this doubt in a constructive way – to be open to what emerges for us from all the uncertainties – be open to growing in wisdom, because nothing is certain anyway, is it? If nothing else the experience of doubt is an opportunity to reflect on what matters most to you, it is an opportunity to re-connect with your own vulnerability, dependence, as well as the soulful self that is balancing with ego – we have become too independent and self-sufficient in many ways, haven’t we?
Doubt and uncertainty are realities, but there is also the reality of this current moment that you have NOW…
Take a few deep breaths and just rest in the certainty of this moment! Through your doubt, there will be growth and creativity. In the Christian calendar, it is the time of advent, a time to again patiently await and expect the good news of Christmas.
May you find hope within your uncertainty. And may you have time with loved ones and be motivated by faith and hope and love.