What You Don't See
The Nobel prize-winning economist Daniel Kahneman shares a profound insight: "The idea that what you don't see might refute everything you believe just doesn't occur to us."
Nor are we particularly keen on seeking out contrarian alternatives. What would be the point? In fact, we intentionally refrain from such inquisition in order to maintain our current reality.
So what is it that we don’t see? The cause of all suffering is not due to any situation or circumstance. Rather, it is the meaning we give each moment that determines our experience.
While we may somewhat rationalize this idea, accepting it is incredibly difficult. It’s completely antithetical and abhorrent to our sense of self. The entire concept of identity is based on relationships with others. Whether those others are specific individuals or society as a whole makes no difference. The "me" is only a me in the context of others.
Yet in the looking at what we don’t see, what we don’t want to see, lies the escape from all pain. But it takes a bit of courage. As we read in A Course in Miracles, "To learn [the pathway to peace] requires willingness to question every value that you hold." (T-24.in.2)
Every value that you hold. And there is one concept we treasure more than any other: me. Me. Even if we purportedly hate ourselves, there’s still a "me" at the center. Even if the majority of attention and compassion is placed on others, those others are being serviced in their importance to me.
That is why Kahneman’s notion doesn’t occur to us. We intentionally, subconsciously, block it. But there is another way. By bringing in a "little willingness" to see what we don’t see. Which begins by noticing how tightly we cling to the concept of self. We can then look at grievances through the lens of gentle non-judgment.
This practice leads to a new perception, one that is filled with a sense of extraordinary bliss.
Join me in Thursday’s class where we’ll explore a new way of looking at what we don’t see - and techniques we can use to step into the realm of perfect peace. I look forward to seeing you then.