The fundamental attitude of learning is to say “I don’t know” and even when you think you know, you say “Is that so?”
We can call this simply, a questioning attitude.
Tada, I’m done with my post today… just kidding.
I find this is as opposed to the prominent behavior or attitude of people who are considered successful or are expected to be successful, where one must always demonstrate, or pretend, the fact that “I know.”
So it becomes always that everyone goes around with this “I know”… where most of the stuff that we do know is, truth be told, only assumptions we have about life. Because we think “I know”, we never bother and get around to examining these assumptions, and holding basic assumptions that is not parallel to the nature of life and reality is like having a bad foundation for a building, or starting a race running in the wrong direction. It wouldn’t matter how fast we run.
Thus it is often that we mistake lies as facts. Illusions as reality.
Therefore, to be able to say “I don’t know” and “Is that so?”, to have this questioning attitude is essential. It is definitely essential for people in the pursuit of mastery of certain art form. And I find it would be great if one adopt in the pursuit of health and weight training, where one will inevitably begin to experience the idea of Qi.
And most importantly, this question is required in exploring the deepest, yet simplest, questions in life. To say it in a bit cheesy way, it is required for those who are genuine truth-seekers. That is, these people would concern themselves with these questions:
– Where do we come from?
– What is the meaning of life? (aka. Who are we?)
– Where do we go? or where are we going?
However, there is one missing question, cleverly pointed out by Alan Watts:
– Is it serious?
For those who somehow, whether by sheer will or birth-right or contemplation, able to arrive at a questioning yet non-serious attitude and is able to bear those questions, they will invariably discover the greatest wisdom, the reality as it is (without answering the questions).
That is, if we are not all too busy getting rich, becoming famous, doing politics, entertaining ourselves and everyone else, saving the world, or whatever else “important” that could be on a modern man or woman’s schedule.
Originally posted 2010-02-22 00:38:21. Republished by Blog Post Promoter