Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle


I am not a scientist and I don’t play one on TV but here is my simple understanding of the Uncertainty Principle.

The Heisenberg uncertainty principle is a rule. It says there is a limit to how well you can simultaneously know the position and momentum of a particle.  This means if you know the position very precisely, you can only have limited certainty about its momentum and vice-versa.


Besides a bit of Charlie Brown’s teacher going “Whaa whaa whaa”, I hear that even the most empirical things are dependent on externalities and perspective. If we delve into the esoteric, the certainty should be impacted more by what I know, where I am standing (literally and metaphorically), how I got to the narrow moment, why I want an outcome and who is watching.

This applies across a range of subjects including humanities, religion, politics, enjoyment, health and medicine, law, and meteorology (maybe everything). That is what interests me the most. How do I appear so certain, act with confidence and stake my reputation (some would say my life) on a conclusion that has so much of me in the criteria and process?

As I move forward, researching, thinking, discussing and writing about uncertainty this year, I am going to hold onto my explanation of Heisenberg and use it as a reminder to stand on one foot, tip my head and squint so I see a different point of view.

How do you lean into uncertainty? Are you sensitive to the perspectives of others? Is your curiosity strong enough to keep you searching?



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