Everything, all things, including the elements: water, air, fire, metal, earth, all the forces of nature, all the creatures of nature; plants, animals, minerals, crystals, mountains, rivers, deserts, forests, plus all the human experiences, relationships, all aspects, every moment is our teacher only if we are a student willing to learn.
Learning Only Asks for Your Presence
How do we learn? We learn through awareness, through knowing (experiences), and through knowledge which is processed in higher states of mind, not lower. Higher means aligned, balanced. When we are willing to learn, we expand, we know why we faced an experience and what experience feels good and what not and get guidance from there. That is inner guidance coming to you from you.
You are a self-sustained healthy being and have the capacity to remain so, should you choose to abide in your innate nature of goodness. The moment one wavers, the mind gets calculative and in defensive mode. In alignment, mode is not defensive but cooperative.
As stated earlier, all of nature is packed with information/ knowledge and if we are a willing student, we learn as we decode information. For example, when we say protons have positive energy and electrons have negative energy, we process and see how this knowledge has become our guru to understand how things replicate in the broader version of life, from micro to macro, macro to micro, like in-breath/out-breath and out-breath/in-breath. How the opposite forces of nature, the positive and the negative, find representation in human experiences too. Learning requires observation, awareness, presence and contemplation. A fragmented mind can zip past the bliss of learning.
Learning Happens Outside the Mind
In awareness, learning happens. Learning is not an aspect of mind. It is knowing. Mind can only process knowledge. The distance from knowledge to knowing is learning. Your ‘knowing’ needs no validation as opposite to knowledge which needs constant validation. Yet, knowing isn’t complete without knowledge and knowledge needs ‘knowing’ to be complete, else that knowledge is of no value. Knowing accords value to knowledge.
“Cogito, ergo sum”/ “I think, therefore, I am,” this dictum by philosopher Descartes has multiple shreds of meaning woven into it. Which one would you settle for? What rings true to you. When you process, that is, chew on this phrase, it will reveal itself to you and you won’t run to seek validation. Knowing is complete in itself.
Phrases that feel and sound eternal, are inspired by the Supreme Intelligence and are given to the reflective/ contemplative minds as a gift.
Who am I?
Here is another statement to chew on: “What you are not, is what you are.” Reflect on this. Hint: apply the principle of “neti neti’ (not this, not this). ‘If I am not this, then, what am I?’/ ‘Am I perishable or eternal?’
As said, nature is our teacher. Analogies are served from nature to be able to explain esoteric concepts; the stillness of the pond, with the stillness of “chitt” (mind+ intellect+ ego), lotus flower with the purity of heart and mind by way of observing how, despite growing in muck and mud, lotus blooms untainted, teachings are served from the ‘flow’ of rivers, the ‘expansiveness’ of the skies, the hard work of bees, the beauty of butterflies, tenacity of spiders, rootedness of tree, flexibility of grass stalks standing tall despite buffeted by winds and so on. Nature serves as examples, playing the role of teachers by simply being what they are. Offering learning in the being-ness of their wholesome being, not sermonising or lecturing, yapping or showing-off, no pretensions.
All of nature, all creatures of nature, fulfil their ‘dharma’, by “be-ing” what they truly are, unlike humans who make things complicated, but this aspect is also not to be judged because within the spectrum of complexity and simplicity, life evolves and expands.
Disclaimer: Urmila Rao is an emotional healer and a forgiveness teacher. All the ideas expressed herein are her own and not professional advice or medical prescription. Her email: email@example.com