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Choosing the Right Kind of Doubt

Choosing the Right Kind of Doubt

 

“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts. “  – Bertrand Russell

Some doubts carries wisdom and insight. Having the capacity to reflect on our life choices and experience with intellectual honesty is a gift that brings you more deeply in touch with your feelings and more honestly able to assess where you are in life. This healthy form of doubt spurs us to grow and frees us to make challenging choices.

The other much more prevalent kind of doubt that stops us in our tracks is a fundamental unwillingness to see the reality of things. Often this is associated with a deep fear of life’s impermanence and denial of change. This is a mind that also tends to see itself as fixed and unchanging. We put ourselves in a box and work to protect ourselves from the world that tries to reshape us.

These doubts are like water turned muddy – there is no real clarity about who we are or what path we are following. This toxic doubt keeps us from committing to our dreams. It keeps us stuck in fear. I move back and forth between these doubting places lately. I know where I am when I just feel stuck and unable to move forward, even toward my questions.

As I have been working my way out of a moment in my business life that feels like getting squeezed between a rock and hard place,  I work to stay focused on my vision. I know that the opposite of doubt is faith,  of believing in a future that I can’t quite see but feel as truth in my heart. Bodhipaksa calls this an act of “borrowing confidence from your future self.” Still there are many days when I get stuck in what seems like a fixed reality and I am lost to my dreams.

One passage that he wrote in his book  Living as a River he says “We have to fully accept that we’re also starting from where we are, but we also have to accept that where we are is not a place. We are all arrows in mid-flight, where we are is a moment on a trajectory, not a position at rest.” I love the image of seeing myself as an arrow in mid-flight — that regardless of how it feels at any given moment, it is all motion – this life.  Moving quickly on a trajectory, hopefully getting closer to our true selves.

 

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Wendy Strgar

Wendy Strgar, founder and CEO of Good Clean Love, is a loveologist who writes and lectures on Making Love Sustainable, a green philosophy of relationships which teaches the importance of valuing the renewable resources of love, intimacy and family.  In her new book, Love that Works: A Guide to Enduring Intimacy,  she tackles the challenging issues of sustaining relationships and healthy intimacy with an authentic and disarming style and simple yet innovative adviceIt has been called "the essential guide for relationships."  The book is available on ebook.  Wendy has been married for 27 years to her husband, a psychiatrist, and lives with their four children ages 13- 22 in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.

9 comments

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8:46AM PDT on Mar 31, 2013

ty

5:35PM PDT on Mar 26, 2013

Thanks.

2:37PM PDT on Mar 26, 2013

Excellent reminder!

5:19AM PDT on May 17, 2012

thanks

2:28AM PST on Jan 1, 2012

I have been thinking about this topic a lot recently and have had plenty of doubts. I have been trying to trust myself more, but was not so ready to do so in the past and filled in some of the space with doubt. I am a critical thinker and need a lot of constructive doubt and I am trying to work out the difference between the good and the bad...

12:30PM PST on Dec 30, 2011

So, so true.......

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts. “ – Bertrand Russell

Wherever you sit or stand was once a forest.
Plant & protect Danny's trees for life.
Trees are the lungs of the earth.

12:24PM PST on Dec 30, 2011

So, so true.......

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts. “ – Bertrand Russell

Wherever you sit or stand was once a forest.
Plant & protect Danny's trees for life.
Trees are the lungs of the earth.

12:22PM PST on Dec 30, 2011

So, so true.......

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts. “ – Bertrand Russell

Wherever you sit or stand was once a forest.
Plant & protect Danny's trees for life.
Trees are the lungs of the earth.

Read more: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/choosing-the-right-kind-of-doubt.html#ixzz1i3Enlvxy

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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