Going down rapids in a canoe is a thrilling experience because you’ve no time – and no way – to figure out what to do. It feels like having the mind vacuumed, not a thought in there. The habitual pattern of thought is thoroughly interrupted.
Our current world situation, the one we’re all in, has overtones of this. The journey is much too complex for rational processes to capture usefully, too much for “knowing.” Our measurements, analyses and rational explanations still exist in what we used to call reality, but they don’t mean what they used to mean. We look at them suspiciously or see quotation marks around them.
It’s as if the world is moving into a vast not-knowing with us hardly noticing. Ordinary people like you and I are becoming initiated into the neti neti process that used to be the exclusive domain of non-dual mystics. Neti neti is Sanskrit for “not this, not this” and it means that, in the search for non-dual truth, whatever formulation of truth you’ve found, well, that isn’t it. Truth isn’t a concept.
Can it be that the not-knowing that the world is opening into is, among other things, the early stages of its surrender into something vastly greater than the choked-down, sleeper version of reality that prevails in the mainstream?
Could this be one major storyline in what’s happening now? I’ve long intuited this but was, frankly, afraid to admit it. I bowed to pressure to go along with what I was supposed to “know.” I experienced plenty of “low-mindedness” and suffering as a result of hiding what seemed evident to me.
I’m not saying that we’re not in a lot of trouble. I think we are. But the reality beyond our knowing, the reality that our neti neti process starts to reveal is that there’s a divine process at work here, something far beyond what our ego-minds, our knowing minds, can imagine. Only a leap of faith, as Kierkegaard termed it, into that process, into the rapids, can serve us here. Rational deliberation from the safety of the shore just isn’t up to the job.
Many or most of my readers, especially those who find themselves drawn to the rapids of we-space groups are aware of this new landscape and are working on it. Group explorations are not a panacea where the landscape is immediately clear and where we now “know.” But they do tend to be places where it becomes clearer that we’re already part, and always have been part, of a natural process that has intelligence and love built into it that’s far far beyond our usual experience of them. We’ve inherently part of a “divine” process in other words. But it’s so large we can only “not know.”
Leave a comment and let us know what you think.
5 thoughts on “The way of not-knowing”
Really loved this Andrew, no buts.
Beautifully written, Andrew. The so-called safety of the shore is much easier to leave in these hectic times. Thanks for the call to leap in!
Thank you for this, Andrew.
Yes beautifully written !! The Human collective and the individual is going through a transition or a big shift. It is like being on the edge, not knowing what will happen next. In this ever changing world. It is a divine process Indeed because this spiritual journey leads us to our sacred center. This State of being is like the Saint Graal.
Thanks for getting back, Anna, Victoria, Lynn, Sylvie! The more the merrier! Looking forward to more collaborating with you all.
And yes Sylvie, I guess that elevated state of being is the Saint Graal, the Holy Grail as we call it en anglais.