August 1, 2013

Seeing and Suffering

If you are a hammer, all you see is nails.

Seeing is the art of cleaning up a worldview. It is the act of generating raw material to act on. It is awareness, attitude, perspective, and sentiment. I believe to see more accurately we need to see with greater care. To see clearly we can expand our personal sphere of empathy. What we see shapes how we think and how we act. It shapes who and how we love. The more clearly we see, the better our chances of really healing ourselves and connecting to another.

I have been thinking that certain root / causal actions can actually create a loop of suffering or a loop of healing. In other words, the consequences of what you do this moment can fundamentally alter the trajectory you are following. These trajectories can be changing slowly or rapidly - even exponentially.

These causal actions can take place at any given moment given the right insight. This means no matter what direction we are presently headed we have the capacity to clean our way of seeing and move on to something else. The sooner we really see, the sooner we can act.

The suffering stops growing when it is seen.

As soon as we become aware of the suffering-object its growth becomes a choice. But the longer we deny the existence of suffering the larger this object becomes. Denial lets it grow like a silent cancer. Denial is based in fear. And it eats self-respect alive.

To create more of this raw material - to see more clearly - is to create more opportunity to slow the growth of suffering, and then to create chances to live a positive life full of meaning.