Recently I have been valuing the simplicity of being curious. By being curious I mean actively engaging with our innate enthusiasm for wonder, discovery and learning. It includes seeing and appreciating the magic and miracles that continually surround us. Just consider how a young child engages with their surroundings and how absorbed they are in life and discovering more about themselves and the world in which they find themselves. Curiosity is a process of inquiry and a continuous exploration...
The Invitation to be curious
Curiosity requires self awareness and noticing what is happening in any given moment. It involves letting go of fixed ideas and opening up to new possibilities and understandings about ones self and the nature of existence. It is relatively easy to be curious about the aspects of life that inspire us, bring us joy and ignite our passions. The invitation is also to be curious about that which causes us pain, discomfort and apparent suffering. For instance if I feel angry, can I notice what happens in my body, what are my triggers, is there a root cause underlying the angry feelings? and so on. Our views of the world can become quite static. The perspectives we hold are influenced by a variety of filters that we see through, these develop over time, as a result of social conditioning and previous experiences. It's awesome when we can recognise these filters and see things from a new perspective. Let me give you an example of someone whose father left when they were young and now they (usually subconsciously) expect that all men will leave and abandon them. This may be a real experience for them though it is not necessarily true. Curiosity invites us to think outside of the box and challenge our habitual ways of thinking. It is a driving force for learning, development and change. When we become curious about something it encourages us to let go of any certainty and absolutes we may hold and be open to new alternatives. In the example above of the person who expected to be abandoned by men, becoming curious opens to the possibility that perhaps some men do stay and even if they do leave, that's okay. She can look for alternatives to her currently held beliefs and open to new opportunities. Perhaps she can uncover the root cause of her belief system and heal aspects of the trauma that she experienced as a child.
“Enjoy every step you take. If you're curious, there is always something new to be discovered in the backdrop of your daily life.” Roy T. Bennett
Using curiosity to gain insight
We create what we expect in the world, so by letting go of expectations and becoming more open, we allow new possibilities to emerge. The Universal life energy, God, Source or whatever you may like to call it, is profoundly intelligent and we can attune to this energy in our daily lives. It is infinitely wiser than our limited minds, yet we can use our minds to tap into this intelligence. We can ask the Universe to "Show us" in relation to a question we might hold and remain curious about the signs and messages we receive in the world around us in response to our question. We can also observe how we react internally to what we notice and experience. Being curious about the situations we find ourselves in helps to remove any extra energy from a situation. It means we no longer need to change it or fix it or blame something or someone. From this perspective there are no mistakes, just opportunities to learn and grow. It enables us to accept things exactly as they are and explore why we may have drawn these circumstances into our lives. It encourages acceptance, though not blind acceptance of anything goes. Rather an acceptance that this is how things are, along with a curiosity as to what are the next steps to take, where do we go from here? From the place of curiosity and wonder we may gain insight into why we feel as we do and find ways to move forward.
Continual Process of Inquiry
There is immense value in asking questions and finding our own truths. Do you consider what ingredients are in your food or where it has come from? What about how you feel after you have participated in a particular activity, maybe watching tv or going for a walk in nature? Which people enhance your life and who do you want to spend time with? Such inquiries can help us find a more aligned way of living and being. They can assist us in breaking free of old ways of behaving that no longer serve us and in finding new enriching and empowering ways of being. A continual process of inquiry encourages us to live our truth and find increasing joy and freedom in our lives. Open of Openhand uses the phrase "constant conscious choice" in relation to how we meet situations and choices that arise in our lives. Making constant conscious choices encourages us to remain aware and watchful of the choices that present to us and choose from the most aligned place.
“What a large volume of adventures may be grasped within the span of his little life by him who interests his heart in everything.” Laurence Sterne
Wonder and magic
Another gift of curiosity is that it invites us to see the beauty and magic that is all around us. Have you ever become curious about a blade of grass or the clouds in the sky? Such considerations fill one with wonder and delight at the miraculous nature of life. It fills our hearts with lightness, gratitude and joy to recognize the miracles that abound in our world.
“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existence. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery each day." Albert Einstein
Thanks for your curiosity and taking the time to read this article, if you continue to engage with your curiosity, you change your world.
With love and blessings,
Fiona is an Openhand Facilitator and the Openhand Community Manager (see about us at: Openhandweb). She is also a reflexologist and experienced doula. She is passionate about living true to her heart and soul and empowering others to do the same. Her website is... http://www.fionareilly.co.uk