Saturday, January 24, 2009
Forgive the advertising-jingle-esque nature of this, but...
"Can we ever speak the Truth before we seek the Truth?"
Here's the context... Roll with me for a moment...
On most topics, and particularly with things like Politics, Society, Religion, it seems we spend most of our time defending our own long-held beliefs rather than actually wrestling the the problems to begin with. And I'll argue that those beliefs, for the most part, aren't actually ours but rather hand-me-downs from others.
Why do we attach so strongly to them? Why do we feel the need to defend them? Why do we have to attack others if their beliefs differ?
I like the quote Hans shared with us the other day by Bertrand Russel. Scroll down if you missed it.
I'll suggest that none of has any REAL beliefs until we've sufficiently challenged them ourselves. And by "sufficiently" I mean that we go at them like a pit bull on a T-bone steak.
Try this... Take your strongest-held beliefs and write them down. Those things you know to be true and will stand by no matter what happens. Then begin the critical deconstruction process. Act as if you will get paid, lottery style, for proving them wrong. Seek all the information you can come across that may turn your own world upside down. Shoot for complete invalidation. Attempt to embarrass yourself by exposing your own narrow-minded ignorance to yourself. Make notes of all data that support and challenge what you think you know.
After the first round, repeat. And I'll suggest that the 3rd time is worthwhile (3 is the magic number, ya know...).
See what happens. Its a marvelous experience. But I'll tell you, its not for the weak-minded. Sometimes as you begin to chip away at the world around you, you may feel disoriented - don't worry, its just your Universe expanding. Keep putting one metaphysical foot in front of the other... you'll find your way.
It will feel a little bit lonely at times. Don't worry, you'll meet some interesting travelers along the way. Big people... Strong people... Beautiful people. You'll find they show up at just the right times, and when they move on, somebody else will come along shortly to guide you. It just works that way.
Its still early in 2009, and this might be a good addition to your resolution list... Will probably mean more to you than that 5 kg you have in mind (eat more broccoli!).
Again, its not for everybody, but for those with the inclination and the courage... for those who Trust themselves enough... its a very, very rewarding process.