The premise that each of us contains, within ourselves, all of the things necessary to create our successes in life is not a new idea, nor is it cutting edge concept. Each of us gains wisdom through experience. What separates the wheat from the chaff is each person’s ability to integrate those lessons over time into their lives. Once an individual learns to integrate those lessons we say that she is wise. This is something that many cultures of the world realize and it is the reason why elders, within their respective societies, are venerated.
When we don’t absorb the lessons life has given us over time we are deemed to be foolish.
There’s a quote attributed to Einstein that I’ve heard so often that I’m beginning to think that there is a joke hidden in it somewhere. It goes something like this: The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
We laugh and point towards the other person and say, “only a fool would do that,” but it is a common human trait to repeat our errors continuously until redirected by some stronger force or opposition. Remember this; when you point in another’s direction, there are three fingers pointing back at you.
If prefer another perspective that says, “By the time the fool has learned the rules of the game, the players have all dispersed.”
To alleviate ourselves from the burden of having to exercise a little introspection and face ourselves, we often, and quickly I might add, seek out the advice of others. We can call these others mediums or oracles. They don’t always appear in the guise of a mystic in hooded robes. More often than not, they are wearing Armani suites and silk ties or Prada pumps. These mediums or oracles we seek out in our technologically advanced contemporary culture tend to be psychotherapist, psychologists, counselors, and analysts; with a few ghost whisperers thrown in for good measure. Many, not all, charge exorbitant fees to impart their wisdom to us. We have no problem sacrificing our time and earnings to these oracles, just as many of our ancestors did to their oracles in the days of the ancients.
I would pose the following question to you, the seeker; the one who desires wisdom.
What is it that separates your life experiences from the contemporary oracle?
Here’s a simple definition of an oracle:
or·a·cle n. A) A sacred shrine believed to facilitate the veneration and communication with a prophetic deity. B) An individual, such as a prophet or priest, who acts as a medium through which a deity is responsive when consulted. C) A person considered to be a source of wise counsel or prophetic opinions.
Our experiences are unique. No two people share the exact same experiences in life. This is the reason many of us, reared within the same family, same environment and under the same socio-economic conditions as our siblings often question the notion that blood relations share anything other than blood.
I am not saying that there is not a place for counselors, therapists and the like. What I do want to stress more than anything is that the first person who should be consulted, the oracle most knowledgeable of you is “you.”
It may seem a radical notion to some, but, as I said in the opening; the concept that each of us contains, within ourselves, all of the things necessary to create our successes in life is not a new idea, nor is it cutting edge theory.
Each of us possesses an intuitive state that is persistently attempting to influence our life, our decisions. The problem is that we often ignore this “inner voice.” I don’t think there is anyone who will argue against the point that we each possess an inner voice. It may not pass muster with the edicts of the scientific method but we simply “know” it exists. This voice, early in our lives, is rather loud. The more we ignore it over time, the more it becomes a whisper until, and this is the important part, until many years into our adulthood it becomes barely audible.
In being your own oracle before seeking our others, you are training yourself to listen to “yourself.” You are training yourself to seek that inner voice first, listen to it and attempt to follow its advice.
In being your own oracle you are giving license to yourself to trust “yourself.” You are acknowledging your own life experiences as valuable and worthy of examination.
In being your own oracle you are, in essence, lighting the way for others whose trepidation in trusting themselves may be alleviated by the living example you set.
It is funny to me how ancient wisdom and formulas for successful living are adopted by Western Societies, repackaged, relabeled and sold back to us in the guise of newer, more progressive information. There’s a proverb that describes this process better than I. It says, “It is a fool whose own tomatoes are sold back to him.”
Allow me to give you an example. I often take courses and workshops from people said to be leaders in their respective fields. I once was taking a workshop from a psychologist whose specialty was “behavior.” During the lecture, he described how the newest research was showing that our thoughts often dictate the type of mental/physical health we incur. He went on to describe the process by which each of us can obtain optimum health. He labeled this process “Mindfulness” and said that this new term is currently being adopted by leaders in the field. I raised my hand near the completion of the workshop and asked him if he realized that he had just given us principles of life and living according to Taoist Philosophy? He was very honest in his answer. He said, “This is similar but without the cultural baggage.”
Alright, after many of you have stopped laughing, could you please finish the remainder of this article?
I could continue repeating the things I’ve already said but then that would be redundant wouldn’t it? I think it is more important, before you walk away from this page, to stress the fact that your uniqueness qualifies you in ways unimaginable to the materialists out there to be the frontline advisor or counselor in your own life. Seek outside mediums, oracles and therapists only after you have exhausted introspective examination.
“Dooni dooni kononi bè nyaga da.”