Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?
Where is the knowledge we have lost in information? -T.S. Eliot, “The Rock”
What do you truly know? What information have you absorbed enough to apply, reject or question?
It takes time and effort to sift through the flood of readily available information to figure out 1) what is true, 2) how it aligns with your core values and 3) if or how you want to take action.
What is true?
We have a responsibility to check the facts, particularly when it affects the well-being of our world. Identify a fact-checking source, bookmark it and run some of the things you hear through it. Find news sources you think are reliable. I love PBS News Hour for its thoughtful questions, rational discussions and in-depth reporting. I learn a lot. It educates me, expands my understanding and increases my empathy.
My practice is to write my interpretation of the situation or question in order to help me figure it out. I like to share my discoveries online. It may or may not resonate with you. That’s why we have choices. Follow people that inspire and motivate you and people who stretch your understanding of areas that call to you.
How does this information align with my core values?
Most people haven’t looked for or examined their core values. Core values are how you guide your life — honesty, kindness, empathy, exploration, inclusion, continued learning, spiritual expansion.
What’s important to you? What do you need more of? Where will you find it? From whom?
There are wonderfully thoughtful people on TED talks. There are also bloggers and podcasters who will inspire and motivate you. Listen, strengthen, expand and even question your core values to make certain they lead you where you want to go.
As I continue to embrace and expand my core values, I develop specific ideas in my work, try out new concepts, and seek new teachers. The idea for this article is based on a statement by an actor interviewed on the Stephen Colbert show that resonated and motivated me to explore. Allow inspiration to come from anywhere.
Be open. Remain curious. Question. Explore.
Is there an action I want or need to take?
Do you need to take action because of your expanded understanding? What would it be? Sometimes it’s enough to clarify the facts so that in the future your decision will be more clearly informed. More extensive information may change your mind, open up your thinking and offer new solutions.
My concern over US politics promoted me to explore the power of focused group energy and to become active in worldwide peace meditations. My State does not represent my political views but I still plan to write to my congressmen to ask them to be statesmen and Americans before they are a political party.
There’s power in numbers. There’s informed and knowledgeable action you can take. Take action and know that you make a difference.
How do you know what you don’t know?
I was deeply shocked to find that I was so unaware of the needs of so many people in my country. It was simply not in my experience to know what some people were going though. Now I find myself listening for ideas on how to train people for the new technology jobs and how education in general needs to change to prepare us all for the rapid changes in our world. I look for ways to protect our environment and to motivate others to do the same.
I take courses in what interests me. I read blogs that educate me. I listen to TED talks for motivation, inspiration and to make me think. And I watch for the nudges the universe provides that suggest a direction I should explore — either to clarify or to investigate an idea more thoroughly to see if it’s mine to do.
How deep is your knowledge?
If you’re really focused on a specific area of interest, you’re going to know a lot more about it than you do about areas that you have not explored. Know that. Identify resources you respect to keep you up to date with areas that resonate with you and keep moving deeper into your own area of expertise and thoughtfully share that.
Have you moved beyond mere information into owning it — into true knowledge?
To Sing a Deeper Song consider:
How Choosing the Right Word will Clarify your Choices
The Shedding of Your Skin
Accept Yourself as You Are
Mindfulness and the Moment
How Do You Define Success?
VLOG: Insights of a Deeper Song
PODCAST: Reflections of a Deeper Song