Defining and Labeling

As part of the latest spiritual paradigm, some people will tell you that it’s better if you can avoid defining and labeling things, especially in relation to ourselves and others. Of course, that may be a very difficult task, since defining and labeling are part of what the human brain does quite naturally and automatically. Without this process we would have trouble functioning in the world.

The real issue, as I understand it, is not our definitions and labels but rather our ‘identification with’ and ‘attachment to’ them–our belief that they somehow represent the final truth. The fact is, they usually don’t.

So instead of suggesting that we shouldn’t define and label, I ask can we learn how to see and not say “I” to every label and definition that the brain produces? Can we learn to open ourselves to the great mystery and miracle of our lives in the midst of the brain’s tendency to produce definitions and labels and assumptions and judgments? Can we remain open to factual impressions of who and what we really are in the midst of action?

Copyright 2015 by Dennis Lewis

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