Where Do You Look For Answers?
By Zack Vernon
Looking for an answer in the easiest place?
When I saw this cartoon, I stopped and pondered “Who would actually do this!?” and “ why would someone spend their time looking for their lost wallet, in a place where they didn’t even lose it?”
And then I realized this cartoon was alerting me to think about the ways I must do this in my life; how I look in the easiest places for something I need to find such as the answer to my “problems”.
Although the cartoon is satire, I imagine his thoughts are something like “Well if I can’t see my wallet in the dark what is the point of looking there. I will look where I can easily see instead”. From the ego’s perspective the need to DO something about the missing wallet is satisfied even though it makes no sense. And our senses facilitate this “problem-solving” by filtering out and distorting the information we perceive which leads us to only considering looking in the “easy” place.
My observation is that human nature is that we will always look where it’s easiest first, where we hold the least accountability and can try to blame someone else for what's happening. But something really great can come out of noticing or becoming aware that we are looking where it’s easy. The key here is to recognize the pattern! Many of us (and I’ll speak for myself here) default into looking in the easy places for the solution. This could be something as subtle as taking an extra vitamin, deciding to avoid “negative” people, trying to change a business issue with more marketing and posting on social media or noticing a part of your body is sore and seeking help only on the physical level. Recognizing the pattern is just the first step in gaining the awareness, but there is still more exploration to be done. Eventually we will have to look in the dark spots where we lost what we are looking for. Hint: it is not outside of you and it is not in what you are trying to blame. 😊
July’s Level Up Program explored the Stages of a Dying Belief System (Pages 31 & 32 in the Conscious Living Investigation manual). We investigated the stages of Denial, Anger and Bargaining. This cartoon is a great example of the more we continue to “Look under the street light”, the more our own denial continues. That is the denial that we are having a problem or that there is anything wrong in the first place and we avoid taking action. As long as we continue to deny we are not able to move through the rest of the stages progressing into Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Surrender.
Looking for the answer underneath the streetlight is just our mind attempting to keep us safe by deflecting at all costs our own accountability to what we are experiencing. And although we might not find the answer under the street light, often it is necessary before we will feel inspired to dig deeper into our dis-ease or discomfort. When the problem isn’t big enough yet we will do our best to avoid it until we cannot avoid it anymore and only then will we be ready to look outside of the easy areas.