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Today, I want to talk about discernment. Here are some definitions:

Webster: “the quality of being able to grasp and comprehend what is obscure”

Oxford: “the ability to judge well”

Synonyms: wisdom, insight, perception, acuity

Many people talk about using” discernment” when you talk to others, or read blogs/articles/books, or when you watch the media. So there you are, reading this book at the age of 22 and it tells you: “This is how the world works.” Is it a reputable source? I don’t know. What if it’s my father’s own book? Do I question the man who brought me into this world and has the experience and “facts” to back it up? What if it’s written by a man who won the Nobel Prize three times! Does that make him right? Are his word then the epitome of truth?

I want to point out  that I do not want to delve deep into the philosophy of TRUTH. Yes, there are possibilities that there is no truth, that truth can only be subjective, that there is only inner truth for each individual, or maybe, MAYBE, there is a universal truth out there that humans just can’t comprehend. All those, and more, are possibilities for which the arguments can be extensive and persuasive.

What I want to focus on is what to do when we are faced with an idea – voiced or written – and must come to a conclusion on whether we should change our views to fit this new form, or to dismiss the person as 1) crazy 2) complete pathological liar 3) attention whore 4) religious freak 5) uneducated or just plain stupid… etc.

None of us actually know things. People make mistakes. Yes, some quantitative stuff like 2×2=4 can be “discerned” as being true. But our science theories? The theory of Newton, the theory of Darwin, the theory of Einstein….. the theory of God?… they’re theories! And human beings are so quick to pick up those theories and built a whole society on them! To me personally, the existence of God is irrefutable. I KNOW he exists. I feel it as a universal truth in ever cell in my body. I feel him, I understand my connection to him. It is a TRUTH. Yet I know that others feel just as strongly about the idea of us evolving from monkeys…. So is one of us wrong? Are both of us right? Are we disillusioned by our beliefs? By our cultures? And how do we move from that delusion to some form of enlightenment?

Our opinions change as new information is discovered every day, every second. My girlfriend just told me yesterday “That’s not what you thought a month ago.” Well, of course not! I’ve grown, had experiences, was introduced to new forms of though. And I adapted my view according to what… resonated with me?

What exactly does that mean? How do we know what resonates with us in the huge ocean of ideas and opinions and facts? How do we know it feels true? How do we know that one day we won’t be having a conversation with some intellect or PhD at a party and he’ll look at us like we have three heads and say “What? How could you be so dense? Here are the facts, the studies: blah blah blah.” And all of a sudden we think to ourselves about how we lived in this crazy world that should be reserved for children, and look, there’s all the data to prove us wrong. We were either lied to, or were lying to ourselves.

Resonance and discernment seem like this invisible force… like the electricity that travels from the light switch to the light bulb, except the light bulb is the (also) invisible “aha!” moment inside our brain. “Aha! That makes perfect sense!” and “Aha! I knew it worked like that all along!” Sometimes though, I feel like that “aha!” moment is just a little sliver of light coming from a flashlight in the middle of a sunny day. It’s there. It’s a little brighter than its surroundings because it’s more concentrated… but you can’t really see it… my metaphor is getting long, but the point is, that sometimes we don’t really know if we’re discerning anything correctly. We may watch the news and our government tells us that something is going on overseas and shows us videos of protests, and talk to journalists in the field. Does that mean that it’s actually happening the way they say? (Even if we’re not all conspiracy theorists) What about the sensation of Wikileaks? Here is one man telling the rest of the world that he has access to super-secret government papers. Do those resonate with you? When people talk about the crazy experiences that they go through, do you believe them?

So how do you know?

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… x10

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Hi, I’m Anastasiya

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I'm so glad that you've stumbled upon (pun intended) my little blog-slice of heaven. I hope you stay a while and discover the ideas and beliefs I hold close to my heart. (we might have the same ones!)

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In Love and Light

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