(No, not me.)
If you haven’t read the classic Greek short play Oedipus the King, here is a highly abridged version: Oedipus’ past is gradually revealed as he pursues a series of clues which ultimately leads him to discover that he was adopted, that he killed his father, and that he married his mother shorty after his father was killed. Of course, Oedipus’ wife (and mother) Jocasta is also unaware of his past. The play begins many years after his father’s death.
At one point in the play, Jocasta becomes alarmed as the clues begin to converge on an answer.
JOCASTA: …[T]alk, empty nonsense,
don’t give it another thought, don’t even think —
OEDIPUS: What — give up now, with a clue like this?
Fail to solve the mystery of my birth?
Not for all the world!
JOCASTA: Stop — in the name of god,
if you love your own life, call off this search!
My suffering is enough.
JOCASTA: Oh no,
listen to me, I beg you, don’t do this.
OEDIPUS: Listen to you? No more. I must know it all,
must see the truth at last.
JOCASTA: No, please—
for your sake — I want the best for you!
OEDIPUS: Your best is more than I can bear.
JOCASTA: You’re doomed —
may you never fathom who you are!
A question is often asked here: Is Oedipus responsible for his own demise? In a way, yes. Had he not pursued the matter, he might have continued with a normal life. In fact other warnings were given to him, long before this exchange with his wife. But that is not his intent in the least! He wants to know the truth, whatever may come of it.
I can relate to Oedipus because the above conversation is similar to one that I once had. It was between myself (in the role of Oedipus) and my father (in the role of Jocasta). My father, a fundamentalist Christian, was advising me to stop reading books by New Testament scholars, to stop learning about the history of Christianity. Those books are biased—it’s best not to pursue it, he said. But like Oedipus, at that point I knew a little too much. There was no going back, even if my darkest fears would become manifest: that I would not live forever, that neither would anyone I knew, that the whole religious enterprise would be revealed as an elaborate mistake. Even the worst truth was better than the best falsity, I thought.
I believe that one reason (among others) Oedipus the King has endured for 2500 years is because it speaks to a deep aspect of our psyche: the fear that there is some unfathomable despair awaiting us, lurking, and that we could avoid it if only we would resolve not to look. Let no one disturb our ignorance!
Fortunately in my case the scope of the analogy is limited. When the truth became known, Oedipus’ worst fears were realized. Mine were as well, but the realization of my fears amounted only to the loss of a fantasy, and soon thereafter the fears themselves dissolved.