This is my first blog post here, and this particular entry is taken from my personal blog.
I’ve found that some of the scariest words to people in general, and to those who believe in a deity specifically, are “I don’t know.”
Think about that for a minute. How often is someone willing to admit that they genuinely don’t know something. It’s more common for someone to just make something up than just admit that they don’t know. It’s also looked down upon in society.
Let me give you an example from my past experience. I’ve always worked customer service lines. I try to make myself the most educated person on whatever products or services the company I’m working for offers. Ninety seven percent of the time, I’ll have the answer for someone’s question ready for them as soon as they ask it, but every once in a while I will admit I don’t know when I genuinely don’t know the answer and need a minute to find out. I’ve found in my more than ten years experience that, more often than not, as soon as I utter the words “I don’t know” and before I tell the person that I’m going to find out, the customer usually utters a string of insults and immediately demands a supervisor because “obviously you’re too dumb to know the answer to my extremely off the wall question.” I’ve taught training classes at different call centers where I’ve specifically told new agents to not use I don’t know, and instead say something like “Let me double check for you,” because it is a more comforting phrase than I don’t know. It also lessens the amount of time the supervisor has to be drawn away from other duties in order to take a phone call. I’ll be honest, when I was a supervisor at a call center, I would play dumb when it came to dealing with escalated calls. I would have the agent look up the information and tell the customer that my job is to deal with the agents and policy questions, not technical or account questions, and then put the customer back on with the agent. But I digress…
When it comes to those who believe in a deity, I’ve found that they are the ones who absolutely fear admitting a lack of knowledge. They all “know” that there is some higher power, “know” his/her/its will, and “know” what happens after death. Most of them know so well that they take this “knowledge” and use it to make threats to those who don’t have the same “knowledge” that they do. It’s disgusting, it really is.
If you don’t know something, its ok to admit it. I’d bet the world would be a better place if people quit asserting absolutes and just said “I don’t know,” or better yet, “I don’t know, but I’m willing to find out.”