This weeks Ideas:
1. Years of behavioral confirmation can lead to individuals feeling smarter than they are. The tactics have become comfortable, and the individual can mistake their rehearsal for intelligence. Any advantage they have slowly becomes a prison because they choose not to adapt.
2. Curiosity doesn’t anchor us until we are moved by an experience, until we witness the undeniable reality of experience. Until that time our thoughts and ideas are abstract, plausible but not founded.
Great teachers will make guide people to be moved by their own experiences. In doing so, they catalyze curiosity in their “students”. Once a person is curious they are open to reality outside of the narrative frames they are accustomed to.
The world grows for the curious because they have experienced a new perspective viscerally and are open to more experiences that lie beyond the egoic shroud.
3. To watch someone truly struggle with an endeavor taxing both mind and body to exhaustion, and persevere is a rarity in our modern era.
If you are fortunate enough to witness these moments in the otherwise comfortable lives we live, pay attention because they teach us something about the caricature of reality we’ve become used to.
4. One of the things that strikes a deep cord with me to the point where I can become emotional is to see the gifts someone has go unused, forgotten, or rendered inert.
5. A person operating on a consistent basis of punishment, negotiation, false choice, fear, and scarcity has confined themselves to a rough opposition with the world around them. Everything becomes a threat. It’s a small way to go through life.
6. Time Dilation.
When time feels like it’s speeding up it is indicative that less is happening than normal. When time slows there is far more happening than normal. Counterintuitive at first, but not from the perspective of information flows.
Time wizzes by when less information is experienced. Think of how fast time seems to go when we’re deeply focused on a task, having narrowed the flow of information from all other directions down to one.
Conversely, time slows when we get overloaded with information from all angles. Think of a car crash. Your senses have become heightened at the moment of danger, information flows in rapidly into your perception.
7. Rivulets branch and meander with chaotic behavior, moving out from the source, dispelling energy along the way. Some paths never find their way to the ocean, but there is a metaphysical centerline that traces the direct path from source to expanse.
While no drop of water will ever follow the true centerline path there are some that will adhere to the most direct route. Moving the the energy from the source to the expanse in the most efficient way possible.
To firm up the analogy, we cannot be so perfect as to carry our energy down the straight & narrow path. We meander. But unlike a droplet, we have a say, an intention, about how keenly we fix ourselves to the centerline. And we’re all looking for a way into the expanse.
8. Tranced Experience and Divinity.
The new order can be initiated on the scale of individual, but it will take longer to come to us collectively. There will be a tipping point, but not before the early adopters have become accustomed to the next order of complexity and novelty. We're in need of contact with the Divine. The Divine is an odd thing. It's the pinnacle to which we set ourselves to, though it is hardly achievable by virtue of the baggage attached to our mortal form.
What is the state in which we grow nearer and nearer to divinity with all its novelty and all its complexity? Where do we find love and awe? What is the next order?
It resides in tranced experience, which is nothing new to humanity. For thousands of years people have mingled with the divine through trances induced by substance, movement, music, meditation, deprivation and more that I am unaware of. The trance always takes hold of us.
But what happens when we learn to take hold of it? Eric Weinstein has a great line: "We are now gods, but for the wisdom." Now I know this isn't what he was getting at, but what would it mean to have that wisdom? It would mean that we became aware that we can create more gods.
The next order is initiated as we invite tranced experience to become a navigable force between people. To wield trance as a catalyst for amicably binding people. In a way, a "god" is created a between them with which they set highest good for the relationship, resonance. What is the god that has been created and resides over the relationship I have with my best friend, my family, my tribe, my country? Was the shared trance powerful enough to snatch and hold a piece of divine awe that we agree is an ideal worthy of worship?
Tranced experience is the key to touching divinity. If we invite trance into our normalized cognitive apparatus we have awe at our fingertips, always. It is the next order of novelty to ascend to so that we feel shared awe resting between everyday relationships.
9. Sobriety from Above.
There's a doorman that stands outside a door leading up to the man in the high tower. He has one rule that excludes someone from passing through this doorway. The rule was given to him by the man that resides in the high tower. The doorman trusts that it is a good rule, and enforces it sternly. He has faith. The man upstairs didn't come upon this rule by whim, but by observing what happens to men in high towers that don't keep this rule in place, or have a trustworthy doorman.
It is etched in the frame over his door leading to the high tower: 'Only those of sober mind may enter'
Sober, for the purpose of the rule, means that one is able to maintain presence over oneself enough so that he does not become a liability to himself or others. Can you maintain clarity if there is chaos? How about clarity in your own chaos? Are you trustworthy to yourself?
The man in the high tower was bestowed with a strong sense of perception from above, meaning that he can see down a path cut into the landscape before he finds himself walking down it. He can also extrapolate the path of others based on the direction of their action, though not always as accurately as he would like.
You see, a view from above allows one to see both luminous areas and the shadowy areas before venturing into them naively. While darkness can be exhilarating, it's also a place where one can lose himself and have a hard time finding his way back to the light. The man is one of sober vision for his god given locus of perception is from above. And so the sobriety and the vision feed back into one another, preserving their noble functions.
Who is the man in the high tower? That's my ego, my all seeing eye, the conscious observer. Who is the doorman? That's my gut, my intuition.
What happens when the rule is broken? (and it happens from time to time) The doorman knows he broke the rule. And the man in the tower has the uncomfortable task of dealing with the interloper who is drunk or high on pride, substance, insecurity, or any number of other things. And its just as uncomfortable every time it happens because a burning truth is reflected back at me: that some of our heroes get lost in the shadows and never find their way out.