Originally posted on Galactic Roundtable discussion group, June 23, 2009 as “Take What You Like and Leave the Rest.”
Earlier we discussed some ways of listening to [subject matter deleted to avoid starting a channel war].
At that time what we said was that the most constructive way of listening was to suspend disbelief, listen without judgement, take what you like, and leave the rest.
I am reminded of the way a crab eats. It has its walking legs, its pincers, a set of smaller pincers near the mouth, and then rows and rows of ever-smaller appendages, working like a conveyor belt to waft the food to its mouth.
Once the appendages have carried food to the mouth, they then return to their original position to pick up the next piece of food. If they come upon a stone or piece of shell, on the recocking motion, they expel the debris. It is all done seamlessly. Food in; debris out. The little appendages never miss a beat.
By the same token, if, having suspended judgement, you take in a detail of these accounts that does not meet with your liking, expel it with as little judgment as the crab expels debris.
Imagine if the crab had an argument with itself about the debris. The arms would get all mixed up and the conveyor belt would roll to a halt and the whole thing would have to be restarted.
Likewise, if you force your mind to argue with your higher instincts about a detail that [X and Y] tell you, you create what you might think of as “scar tissue” on the mind, a place where the mind cannot continue to function smoothly without first refighting the original battle.
This is the equivalent of a scratch on an LP record. Ever afterwards, the needle will skip.
I call this “old business,” needle scratches on the mind and it is very hard to get rid of.
Someone wisely said that, at this stage of our evolution, if we pit the mind against the higher instincts, the mind will win. And what the mind makes right today, it is constructed to make right tomorrow and the next day and the next. Old timers are still recounting essentially their treasured judgments; that is all that some people have – needle scratches on the mind.
So I personally like to avoid scarring the mental tissue in the first place.
Details that don’t work for me, I drop as the crab expels food. No scar tissue on the mind. No old issues.
I find that, later, when I have more information, the same details go down the throat effortlessly and are digested easily. Earlier, the time was just not right.
I recommend this as the way of listening to what will be ever more amazing details – not tales of geographical marvels necessarily, although those too, but of interdimensional wonders.