Cheri Huber on Questioning Assumptions

The process we will work with here is extraordinarily subtle. I am going to ask you to learn to question your every assumption, everything you think you know. Your “koan” (a spiritual riddle, in the Zen tradition, that cannot be answered intellectually) is “Do I know that?” When, through a burst of intuitive knowing, you have successfully answered that koan, the next one will be, “How do I know that?”

Through this process, we learn to approach every moment of life without assumption, to cultivate a completely fresh awareness. If I hear a voice in my head say, “I’m not an artist,” rather than experiencing a reaction to that statement and assuming that the reaction means the statement is true — because the voice has always said that and I have always believed it — I am going to question that voice. I will ask myself questions designed to enable me to examine the situation more carefully. “Is that true? How do I know that’s true? What if it’s not true? What does it mean if it is true? What would it mean if it weren’t true? How did I get this information? Who is defining the terms? Who is setting the standards? How can I test this?”

Cheri Huber, How To Get From Where You Are To Where You Want To Be

Image used under Creative Commons license from dominic bartolini’s Flickr photostream.

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