Salient points [#7] – “Our doubts are traitors…” as Shakespeare noted

Our doubts are traitors and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt. 

Many people have stored in mind a Shakespearean line or two ready to roll off the tongue. My preferred line is from Measure for Measure, (Act One, Scene IV). Why this line? Because doubt is a stubborn weed.

The world’s population is riddled with infernal, ivy-like influencers seeking a stranglehold on reality, and to suffocate any inkling of truth. Countless examples come to mind: from zealous deniers of climate change, through pious proponents of theocracy, to the rambunctious cheerleaders of corporate profiteering. These are some macro scale harbingers of doubt. They are all too present, seldom acknowledged, elephants in the room.

To be or not to be

Of course doubt functions at the human scale: our everyday work-life tussles, our most intimate relationships, our personal moods.

In the blink of an eye I can conjure up a pair of irksome doubts… Will I finish drafting book two of The Feng Trilogy by the end of 2015 so as to keep that project on track for 2016?  Who on Earth might be the right literary agent/s to help me achieve my future fiction and non-fiction projects?

Neither of these present doubts are all-consuming question marks. They are brain blips: small ellipses that nudge my focus, niggle my progress, gnaw at my time. A further blink of the eye resolves such minor points: Part two of The Feng Trilogy is being fleshed out on its skeletal storyline (so time, and due diligence, will tell); As for literary agents, careful research will identify the most relevant people to approach in due course.

My doubts like yours, as with all doubts, are not impossible mysteries. Rather they are puzzles to be worked out. Doubtless, that is the salient point of Shakespeare’s timeless quote.


 

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