There are many genuine gifts of not knowing….
In a conventional sense, there is a huge amount I don’t know about quite literally every subject.
There is a lot of information out there I am not familiar with. I have very limited experience. There are many far more knowledgeable and with far more experience about any subject. And even if I knew more than anyone else, that too is just a drop in the bucket compared to what will be known about it in the future, and that is a drop in the bucket in terms of what is possible to know. There is an infinite amount of possible information, perspectives and experience about anything in life and in the universe. And what I do know, in a conventional sense, are only preliminary guides. I don’t know any of it for sure. (Apart from that it will change, and often does so dramatically, turning what I thought and my whole perspective upside down.)
So not knowing is shared. It is something we all have in common. It is something all life, all beings, share. We are all in the same boat. Just there is an immense beauty.
Not knowing is also honest. I really don’t know anything for sure, and there is a huge amount of information I am not familiar with, and my experience is always very limited.
Being honest about what is honest for me frees me from expectations. It frees me from expectations from myself, and sometimes also others. I don’t have to try to live up to a particular image. I don’t have to try to present a particular image to myself or others. I am free from having to defend any image. Someone says I am stupid, and I can find that. Someone says I am smart, and I can find that too. I can find the genuine gifts in both, and also recognize that none of those are really true.
In that freedom, I am free to live from what is here and now. Simple. Honest. Direct.
I don’t always remember this, which is OK. I can notice when I pretend to know.
I can look for the symptoms of telling myself I should know. I can notice the effects. I can see what is more honest for me.
And that is how I can explore my more basic assumptions as well, all the way back to the most basic ones of all of a doer and observer, of being an object within content of experience. (Excluding other content, and what it all happens within and as.)
Trigger: Noticing that impulses to identify myself as Buddhist or Christian or anything else has eroded away. When I look closer, it is partly because I really don’t know what Buddhism or Christianity is. Those labels can be very helpful socially and also in guiding attention, practice and life in the world. But at some point, they can be limiting. Life is not bound by any philosophy, model or story, no matter how helpful those stories may seem. God is kind and reminds us of this by always showing up outside of any story.
- gifts of don’t know
- in conventional sense
- not expectation, don’t have to try to live up to an image (free from expectations and images)
- can be who and what I am, here and now – simple, honest, direct (don’t need to try to fit into an image, live up to it, present it, defend it)
- around religion and philosophy
- realize I know very litte about Buddhist, Christianity, mysticism etc. and good to admit – freeing in the same way
- realize I don’t know what it means to “be” Buddhist, Christian etc., and also don’t know enough about those traditions to honesty say I “am” one thing or another
- around stories in general, including the basic ones
- receptivity, curiosity
- and also always, notice when pretend I know, when try to know
- notice the effects
- see what is more honest for me
- in conventional sense