In a moment, I’ll explain why your strategic use of doubt can give you the power to change your entire perception of reality — in a single instant. It can help you see opportunities that no one else does to make money and live your best, happiest life. And it can bring a power to your life and relationships that the world envies.
It all begins with ONE thing:
Doubting your own assumptions. And then, making that a constant practice.
Now — it’s okay to see your own assumptions as absolute facts just as most people do, but every so often a magical thing happens to people who know how to doubt them often enough: They don’t cling to the certainty of their mental state for dear life — like 99% of people on earth. In fact, they feel a certain detachment (one associated with enlightenment, which I wrote about in the last blog post…)
When you no longer cling to your own assumptions as if your life depends on it — you are suddenly free from the bonds of those assumptions. You’re capable of seeing the world in a fresh way.
A Way That Serves You
Rather Than Enslaves You.
Isn’t the average person capable of this?
Perhaps. But frankly, it’s quite rare. There are too many forces working against most people. By our very nature we tend to identify with our assumptions about the world — about reality. And as a result, we protect them from attack as we would protect our own bodies.
Read that last sentence again — it is in NO way hyperbole or exaggeration. That’s how important some peoples’ own assumptions are to them. I’m sure you’ve seen or met someone before who protects their assumptions as if they were a limb extending from their torso… And if someone challenges that assumption — they will defend it as if the person has physically assaulted them! They think the person is trying to chop off their leg.
But that’s silly. It’s an assumption. It doesn’t really exist. Does it?
Consider how often we all fight over our points of view — when it ultimately makes no difference who is right and who is wrong. The universe goes on either way. We latch onto some thought or another, claim it as our own, and then draw our swords whenever anyone disagrees. So little of what we argue about makes any real difference in the world.
But It Makes An
Enormous Difference To Us.
Why? Why is it so difficult for us to admit when we are wrong?
When you know the answer to that — it will make personal development, success, and goal achievement of all kinds a thousand times easier.
Here’s the answer:
We identify with our own views of reality SO much, that when they are wrong, we are wrong. That’s a subtle distinction. We make the mistake of identifying with our points of view. They ARE us. Even our language supports this. The phrase we must say is “I am wrong.” Why doesn’t it occur to us to say, “the thought I held was wrong?”
Because without being aware of it — we live as if our thoughts and ourselves are the same thing.
This is… well, wrong!
Ask anyone who has gotten decent at meditation — and they’ll tell you from first-hand experience that you are NOT your thoughts. You can identify with your thoughts, but you are not them. Once you’ve been meditating for a while, you realize that “you” are simply the awareness that “watches” your thoughts happen.
But the “outside world” doesn’t usually get this. In fact, it WANTS you to identify with your thoughts. The outside world promotes identification with thoughts in order to protect its social structures. Every social group that seeks your involvement — whether it’s religious, political, fraternal, or anything else — needs you to utter just one magic phrase for it to begin to exert massive control over you.
That Magic Phrase
Is “I Am”
Once you utter the phrase “I am” anything, you have walked straight into a trap! Now that doesn’t mean you won’t get value out of the trap and it doesn’t mean you’re foolish for walking into it. It simply means that you are now in a trap — and the only hope you have of ever getting out, should you decide you want to, is remembering how you got caught in the first place!
You got caught in this trap because you identified as something. Something that now comes pre-loaded with a set of beliefs and conclusions you never really arrived at on your own. And any time you blindly adopt someone else’s set of beliefs and conclusions — you can bet there’s beliefs and conclusions that come wrapped up inside the package of them that you are adopting — that only serve THEM and not always you.
The people who get into the most bitter, ugly arguments about politics are the card-carrying members of either political party. The centrists, on the other hand, are usually pretty “chill".
If you go to a restaurant on the right day and listen carefully, you might overhear a table screaming, yelling, name-calling each other, even though they often genuinely try to avoid those kinds of arguments.
Those are the people on either political extreme. And especially recently in the US — that kind of thing has ended friendships and caused more hate and division between family members than you can shake a stick at. (And BOTH political parties in the US are responsible for it.)
All of this has only happened because of what the political parties got people to IDENTIFY as — usually for the sole purpose of getting donations. Without millions of people saying “I AM a ________,” the hate and division would have never happened.
The best way to fix this?
Change The Label.
Once the label changes, everything else changes without effort. You no longer feel the need to defend your party, or your candidate, because that party or candidate is not about YOU anymore.
So consider for a moment some of the things you may “know” about yourself.
Do you “know” you are a Republican/Democrat, or are you simply someone who shares many of the views of one of those parties?
Do you “know” you are a doctor/lawyer/accountant, or are you simply someone who practices one of these professions?
See The Difference?
There’s an enormous difference between someone who “is” something and someone who “does” something. And while the difference may seem trivial — the next time you find yourself strongly defending some point of view — ask yourself if it is a position you “hold” or one that you “are.”
Fostering doubt in your assumptions can help you get out of these all-too-common psychological traps that keep you stuck. When we begin to question assumptions and remember never to completely identify with them — that’s…
The Only Time Change
Is Finally Possible
That’s when you can change your life so radically, you might not even recognize yourself a couple years later because you have evolved so much as a human being. But until you can question your assumptions, whatever system you find yourself in remains intact. And it will hold you back.
Put another way:
If you can break through this barrier and create real change in your life — your efforts must not be against circumstances. You cannot control circumstances. Instead — direct your efforts against your inherent tendencies to identify with your own thoughts and assumptions.
And then, be wary of the onslaught of beliefs, and identities presented to you by everyone else. Unfortunately, this is not always easy — because our assumptions don’t look like assumptions. They look like reality. But when you can break it, that’s when you can finally…
Learn To See For Yourself
“Let every eye negotiate for itself, and trust no agent”
Certainly there are times when it is appropriate to accept your initial assessment of things and simply react. But these times are the exception. And life typically affords us the opportunity to evaluate our circumstances before we act.
Unfortunately, we rarely take advantage of the opportunity. That’s not because of the urgency of life. It’s simply because it never occurs to us to question them.
The true power of enlightenment is not in striving to reach and maintain an impossible state of higher awareness. It’s simply in questioning our way out of the illusions of daily life.
There are three questions that can push us in the right direction:
What else could it be?
What else could it mean?
What else is happening?
These questions can break the hold of our current beliefs — so that adopting new ones can become a true possibility. These questions are not encouraged in normal social circles because they can lead to the rejection of social norms.
Still, they’re deceptively simple.
When you ask them repeatedly, you will begin to get a sense of how all of this works. The new "answers" will just keep coming and coming. This is not just a sign of their difficulty. It’s also a sign you are heading in the right direction. People who refuse to blindly accept a view of “reality” that is handed to them by teachers, leaders, politicians, parents and gurus are…
(And yes, I’m encouraging you to become dangerous.)
How can those who wish to control us do so if our behavior isn’t based on a fixed, and thus predictable, model of thinking?
They can’t. And they know it!
If the world is built on illusion, there is little room for doubt. This lesson — if we are to learn it at all — must be learned outside the scope of the social circles we find ourselves in daily. They can’t teach it. It threatens their very existence.
This is true not only of religious cults — but also of any social organization: The stronger its members’ faith is, the stronger the group is. And the introduction of any doubt, however small, is the first step in the weakening of faith.
I am not making a case against social institutions. Our society clearly couldn’t function without them and they often make our lives worth living.
Yes, we need them.
But when our participation in them becomes detrimental to us as individuals… When they’re getting in the way of our goals and our lives… What are we to do then? Blindly serve the organization? Or do we begin to think for ourselves and question whether or not we wish to remain a part of it?
Doubt is the key ingredient. To adopt this mindset is to begin to find your own way in life.
A final word of warning:
Don’t expect anyone to congratulate you on learning and mastering this material. It’s simple to learn and master. And it will open you up to a world where entrepreneurship, personal development, and life itself is just easier.
But no one will pat you on the back for doing it. Understanding and practicing it will simply free you from the psychological traps that hold you in place. It comes with its own rewards — among them, greater insight into seeing opportunities to make money, find success, and become a leader yourself. But to those who benefit from you being in your current state — this is a direct threat to their understanding of reality.
And threats are not taken lightly.
“So long as men praise you, you can only be sure that you are not yet on your own true path but on someone else’s.”