When you are not focused on a question and not seeking an answer, you are not living. You are not feeding the planet, and the planet is not feeding you. Gregge Tiffen (The Language of a Mystic: Universality, November, 2009)
In a world that honors knowing, questions often get a bad rap. We can feel inadequate when we don’t know something, hiding our unknowing by acting as if we do. I’ve done that and, in doing so, I block the energy, the excitement, the joy and satisfaction of discovery. I block the energetic force of life.
Perhaps in part this is old residue from school days where having the right answer brought cheers, while the wrong answer or, worse yet, no answer at all evoked jeers (or worse). What if ‘I don’t know, but I’m going to find out’ was seen as the best answer?
The theme of discovery emerged this week amidst finding myself in a post-election funk, having allowed some of the energy of the masses to enter my being. I realized that I’d lost any sense of curiosity and wonder about what is happening in the world. I forgot my belief that all is unfolding as it should in the universe. ‘It’ seems all wrong and depressing to consider.
In the thick of the funk, I was aware that when I walk through life’s events with curiosity, I’m energized, engaged, and have the capacity to hold life lightly. That’s true of even the seemingly insignificant, but necessary, daily tasks in life.
On the other hand, when I engage with a sense of obligation, my energy quickly fades carrying with it peace, happiness and satisfaction. And, without a sense of something to be discovered, obligation seems to rule. In musing about how to cultivate a culture of discovery, the question ‘so, what is the question?’ emerged. Forming a question is key to cultivating wonder and curiosity.
I have some what I consider to be ‘big’ questions. Those are the questions that there’s no quick, easy answer to. Rather, they live and they help me frame the more immediate questions, those learning opportunities that in due time solve the mystery. I’m curious about what it means to be ‘in the world and not of it’. And, I’m curious how to live that. I’m curious about universal law and how energy works, more specifically, how can I use the energy of each day more effectively?
When I’m fully aware, these questions guide my choices about what I read, what I participate in and how I do so. More importantly, they help me cultivate my sense of wonder around life’s daily events where the learning opportunities are ever-present whether I recognize them as such or not.
There are gems to be uncovered in every choice we make. Questions help me recognize them when I’m willing to ask and then seek to discover.
What about you? What question will cultivate your sense of wonder today? Tomorrow? And, beyond?