The Art of the Open-Ended Question....

I suddenly realized, the other day, that there's a kind of open-ended question that I unconsciously ask myself that does me no good at all.  It shows up in various guises, but the main theme is "what is wrong with me now?" and I have no idea how many times a day this question arises.  What I do know is that it is a question that has no good answer.  By the time I have enough internal cojones to say "Nothing!" the question will have ceased to be.  The fact that it exists at all is an indication that I'm still caught in an old story.

Another way that the question shows up is "How come I'm not_______?" This one is easily answered by quickly running through all my worst beliefs about myself, like some demented biographical movie that crams deficit on deficit in the space of a nano-second.  It happens so quickly that I don't have time to realize that it's just my ego, insisting that I am separate from all good things and likely to remain so.  I don't have the time or space to consider that this might not be the truth, though that thought would certainly be a help if I could get to it.

Part of the problem is that these destructive thoughts come up when I'm already at a low vibration....maybe there's something that I don't want to feel, like fear or sadness or anger, and I've tired myself out trying to avoid the feeling.  In that time and space, I have no recourse.  The predator has rightfully chosen the weakest animal in the herd, and cut it out with unerring accuracy. Unfortunately the prey refuses to die and emerges, zombie-like, to stagger about being wounded.

What then?  Luckily I have discovered that it is possible to distract myself long enough for a better vibration to grab hold.  A nap, television, a book....anything to allow a break in the action so that I can remember to look around and be satisfied with what is.  That's when I'm able to notice that I am no longer in that badly altered state, able to see it from a better position, able to pat myself on the back for having the courage to look.  

Is this useful?  Yes, when it enables me to find the witness space and be with this tortured part of myself that I hadn't wanted to own.  It's pretty clear that the negative open-ended question is a cover for some aspect of hatred, grief, anger....some unwanted space....and the best way to handle it is to accept it, be with it, give it the peace that it wants.

But what about the positive open-ended question?   I noticed it the other day when I suddenly switched from "How come I'm not....." to " What if I could....." and felt the immediate shift in my awareness.   Well, you know, it's a kind of seduction....the positive open-ended question is the way we lure more possibilities out of the Field of Infinite Potential and into our awareness.