So how do we stop thinking? Lots of people know how to do that in the theory which is why this blog is all about looking closely at the quotes I see racing around on social media. For the most part they’re pretty useful, but instead of applying them as overall lessons people only seem to post them when the most superficial meaning of the phrase seems suitable to their current day.
If you spend real time meditating on these ideas you realize that most people posting the quotes do believe they’re pointing to something real, but they don’t make any real effort to try to truly understand them or live by them, which sort of defies the value of a quote that’s survived for thousands of years. The answers to our perpetual questions are perpetually in front of us and yet we ignore them.
The nature of modern life, social media and the popularity of the visual quote has somehow turned quotes into commodities when the original point was the deepest possible meaning. These were ideas meant for slow deliberate contemplation, not to be treated like a checkbox. But as the old saying goes, when the wise man points at the moon the fool looks at his finger.
So we each have to ask ourselves–are we just treating these quotes as check-boxes? Do you really do anything other than just quickly acknowledge you like it, maybe save it and then move on? Many of these are are famous, ancient quotes. Surely your personal peace and spiritual life are worthy of an hour of serious meditation on an idea you already know you like?
If I post something on the Other Perspectives stream on Mondays that’s because it’s a quote that is either dangerous to healthy functioning or it has the potential to be. And if they’re in the rest of the week—like these ones are—then the reason is because we’re here to discuss them more fully. To understand them and turn them into actions in our lives.
Spirituality isn’t a noun. Enlightenment isn’t a degree you get. These are verbs. These are actions. These are when subject and object merge to the point where this is where you are not a separate individual thing that is moving through space and time, but rather your life is a motion–a living perpetual creation: a State of Being. At that point you, your life and the world around you merges into a single experience.
Don’t skim with your spirituality. Don’t spend more time choosing a coat or shoes than on your personal development. One just drapes over your ego, the other is your fundamental substance. And the essence of you is definitely worth exploring. You are beautiful. That’s a guarantee.
Enjoy your day.
Scott McPherson is a writer, public speaker, and mindfulness facilitator who works with individuals, companies and nonprofit organizations around the world.
A serious childhood brain injury lead Scott to spend his entire life meditating on the concepts of thought, consciousness, reality and identity. It made others as strange to him as he was to them. When he realized people were confused by their own over-thinking, Scott began teaching others to understand reality. He is currently CBC Radio Active’s Wellness Columnist, as well as a writer, speaker and mindfulness instructor based in Edmonton, AB where he still finds it strange to write about himself in the third person.