Semantics and Neurosis
warning; one of my personal neuroses is clarifying communication by
defining the terms I personally use and those used by the people with
whom I am communicating. I have learned that I can no longer assume that
people always know what I mean when I write or speak, and I can no
longer assume I understood their message to me as clearly as I might
think, or they intended. (See, I told you I was neurotic about this). So
bear with me as I explore the three words of this issue’s theme:
Trust, Inner, and Wisdom.
defines the three words as follows:
Trust: (noun) Assured reliance on the character, ability,
strength, or truth of someone or something: one in which confidence is
Inner: (adjective) Situated farther in: being near a center
especially of influence: of or relating to the mind or spirit:
Accumulated philosophic or scientific learning: knowledge: ability to discern inner qualities and relationships: Insight:
good sense: Judgment.
if I put these together as a theme, “Trusting Inner Wisdom”, and I
presume it is a self directed statement (meaning I trust my own inner
wisdom versus someone else’s inner wisdom) I can accurately interpret
this to mean:
have to admit that this makes me a little uneasy. First, I am not sure
of the geographic position of the center of my mind and spirit.
Secondly, I don’t believe all of my currently accumulated knowledge is
accurate, and thirdly, I know I have made a few significant mistakes in
judging the circumstances in my life. Is Inner Wisdom more simply just
what is often referred to as our base instinct or intuition, that
proverbial “gut feeling”?
aside the issue of trust and geography, it strikes me that the source of
the wisdom (the reference point from which we make decisions and compare
data points and evaluate relationships) is the critical issue. Critical,
in that if we are relying on this source to help us make key decisions
which affect our individual life and inevitably influence those within
our community, it better be the right stuff.
statement also clearly indicates that the source is “Inner”, from
within us. Some repository of knowledge and experience, most of which
lies below our conscious access, is alluded to in the phrase. Is this
knowledge, which I suspect includes the emotional, psychological, and
physical components of our existence, simply the cumulative total of our
individual experiences up to a given point in real time? If this is the
case, then the source of the inner wisdom is finite and flawed. Or is
the source of Inner Wisdom actually external, as my holistically
oriented colleagues and acquaintances have shared with me, and as I have
read in many books on the subject.
we tap into a transcendent universal “wisdom” or
“consciousness”, then download this knowledge into our inner being
and then, tap into it via meditation or prayer? If this is the case,
then is the universal source accumulating knowledge progressively over
time, or is it an omniscient source having always possessed an infinite
database of unchanging, absolute truth? Truth assumed to be absolutely
benevolent which is the reason we are pursuing it? My personal studies
of various world religions and philosophies like Buddhism, Hinduism,
Unitarianism, and others tend to suggest that we are divinity and that
the entire storehouse of absolute knowledge and wisdom is within us.
can’t escape a fundamental concept critically connected to the word
“trust” – the idea of faith. Because we do not know this source,
and are unable to qualify it, and cannot easily access the knowledge it
possesses without years of disciplined training and practice, then only
by faith can we proceed into any process that claims to lead us to
“Inner Wisdom”. Faith
itself, must hold us to the
self-generated belief that, wherever an inner search for wisdom goes, we
will find accurate, truthful and beneficial knowledge; that this
knowledge can only be interpreted on a personal level, which ironically
seems to make it now relative, not absolute. It seems that faith would
have to be more powerful and influential than trust or Inner Wisdom
because only faith would motivate you to pursue an uncharted path
without foreknowledge of the outcome. I warned you… neurosis.
like the Biblical Proverb’s simple and poignant description in chapter
19 verse 7 “ The fear of the
Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is
understanding.” I know, what does the Proverb mean by “fear”,
“Lord” and “Holy One”? In
the original Hebrew the word fear is often used as a synonym for
reverence and deep respect. We tend to equate fear as a negative term,
but fear can be a powerful source of wisdom. I should fear high speed
traffic when trying to cross the street shouldn’t I? That seems to be
a powerful positive application of fear.
term “Lord” as it is used in the biblical context means Master. A
distinct authority willingly submitted to by an individual.
way, my conclusion is that faith is the cornerstone for any search that
assumes the endpoint of wisdom, no matter what that source may be.
Depending on a source and the knowledge gained to date by the pathways
chosen to access that source, one’s ability to fully trust that
information is an exciting and interesting topic.
your source and why do you trust it?
Mack is a Certified Clinical Exercise Specialist and Certified Muscle
Activation Techniques Specialist and has been in full time practice for
over 16 years. He was the 2003 IDEA International Personal Trainer of
the Year and has authored many articles in medical and fitness
publications. Greg is the founder of Columbus-based Physicians Fitness,
Inc. His work primarily focuses on assessing neuromuscular integrity and
biomechanical correction for chronic pain and movement dysfunction. He
can be reached at (614) 989-1465 and email@example.com.