The Glass ceiling on knowledge

Updated: Apr 19

I will begin by justifying that I have always been an endlessly curious being. I have gone down countless avenues on my quests to understand the mechanisms of the world, nature, society, health, biology, phycology, neurology, and the nature of existence and consciousness itself.

Having a relatively balanced understanding of all I've learned so far has been highly valuable to the way I navigate the word and express myself in it.

Knowledge is enlightening & empowering. Layered understanding of the nuances of the outer and inner-verse

offers the grounds for a rich life and certainly contributes to inner contentment and worldly success.

But the mind is just one fraction of our human experience. And an excessive, unbalanced focus of attention on the mind and conceptual knowledge can rob us of the vastness of other aspects of our human potential.

I was listening to a podcast recently. The expert was passionate and the information she shared was valuable. I was grateful she had done the work to explore the subject in depth and spend the time to share it on the internet.

But I began contemplating the nature and the possible trap of expertise.

At some point in our lives most of us pick a lane, an area that speaks to us most resonantly and follow it, collecting more and more data as we go until we feel we have a full head of rounded knowledge on the subject, and a great sense of accomplishment and satisfaction with our achievement.

Many of us dedicate our adult lives to becoming experts in our chosen fields, whether by heart-driven passion, force, boredom or an ego-centred desire to be acknowledged and remembered as a significantly special and important being to have walked the earth.

Our species advance.

We pass down our discoveries to the next generation who then built upon them, and the human world becomes a fascinating, ever-evolving project to be a part of.

But without stopping to exhale. To pause and see and feel and absorb all the beauty, the love, the magnificence and the potential for immense joy, freedom and play, what is the point?

It's no secret that obsessive, unbalanced focus on becoming someone and acquiring knowledge can lead to the kind of self-seriousness that has been labelled by the wise ones as a sickness. A 'mental illness' as my spiritual mentor Rohan Matus often calls it.

What is the point of living with a head full of knowledge but a body full of pain or numbness? And perhaps a mind full of fog and all the negative looping thoughts that come with a lack of wider awareness.

Why is it so easy to forget the fact of our own mortality? Here we are, all these rational, logical and sometimes simply illogical and deluded minds, rushing about to prove and discover stuff, sometimes just to prove our own worth in the world, but often not wise enough to remember that death is closer every step of the way.

Many intentionally ignore the fact of death out of fear. But it does not have to be a depressing concept. To me, the fact of death only invites more value, more awe, more gratitude and urgency for deep presence to the fact of life.

The fact that our time here is precious is a beautiful revelation because it forces us to spend every moment of it living or at least working towards a fully heart-based existence. One that can be full, and include expertise and all the things mentioned above, but with full-body contentment, presence and simple, unconditional joy.

We can walk so lightly, so freely, and so buoyantly through this world, with clear, sharp minds and vibrant hearts, and a deep sense of higher spirit, and a nuanced, rational understanding of the mechanisms and systems that make up our mind/ bodies/bodies/world and beyond.

Our embodiment of the human experience does not have to be so lopsided.

So extreme as to identify as a new-age spiritualist or a purely rational scientist. We do not have to live bound to one laneway, and follow that and only that all the way down into the darkness that becomes us at death.

We can be everything.

Limitless, is our true potential.

And that is where the glass ceiling on knowledge comes in.

Too much knowledge creates the illusion that there is always an answer, and as a result, always a limit, a box that we can wrap all the fragments of the world inside, labelling each one and shelving them inside the mind in a neat, orderly manner.

It is glass, because we don't know we are trapped by it. The rational mind itself is feeding us thoughts that declare the certainty of things that are impossible, hence the ceiling.

Where are the thoughts coming from? Who is thinking them?

Can we not use history as a rough argument for our future?

Is that not evidence enough that as we continue to evolve, we continue to make new groundbreaking, earth shattering discoveries.

So why cap it now?

The impossible is where the possible lives and breathes.

What if there was no ceiling, glass or otherwise? What if there were elements of existence that simply had no comprehendible answer? At least one that cannot be grasped by the mind.

What if the mystery of consciousness is an infinite pool that we can swim in, dissolve in, and enjoy without the noise of the mind interrupting to understand how and why.

Sometimes I wonder how it can make sense to the more extreme new-age spiritualists to ignore proven science. And then for some scientist to righteously ignore the mystery of consciousness.

Perhaps even the smartest minds aren't large enough to examine two opposite extremes for where they might merge.

Integration of the known and the unknown.

Integration of knowledge and mystery.

There are incredibly profound states of being that have been discovered by the courageous and the curious. By those who continue to ask why, and are not afraid to let go, and to drop the cognitive mind for long enough to hear the answers that rise from the silence of consciousness itself.

If there is one thing; only one thing that I am convinced of. That in my perception and experience of the world proves undeniably true; it is that there is a fabric, an essence, an exquisite frequency of oneness that weaves everything that exists here together. It could be called consciousness. It could be called love. But there's something, vast and divine, that can be sensed in all things solid and not solid.

At some point on this journey of self-realisation, after studying the mind and the world from many different angles including the rational and scientific, we must simply let go, and surrender to what silence has to show us.

And here I am, sharing what I think I know and don't know, and tomorrow might meet someone who convincingly shows me that all of this ramble is nonsense, and I should return to my glass-ceiling box.

Maybe some great thinker one day will discover the ceiling is not glass at all but tangible and true. Maybe they will have the words and the super-intelligence to label it.

I am only a woman, just another human specimen here for a blip in time, sharing my contemplations on a subject that, of yet, has no definitive right or wrong conclusion.

Over and out.