two monkeys discuss critical thinking

Why should I enhance my critical thinking skills?

I’m drawn to the unknown.  I want to investigate the unknown spiritual aspects of life. Why should I enhance my critical thinking skills?

The framework of spiritual exploration would seem to be an odd place for the study of logical reasoning and critical thinking but these thinking skills are essential for the spiritual explorer.  However, critical thinking skills are essential for the spiritual explorer.

“Your life experience can only be as deep as your awareness.” — Bryant McGill

Learn About Yourself

Everyone starts at a different place.  Sorry, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach.  Even though everyone has their own way of expanding their awareness and “awakening” there are several tools that can be used which will enable you to be effective in this endeavor of spiritual exploration.

First things first.  Find out about the place where you are starting.  We each have our own unique world-view or paradigm.  This is shaped by a number of factors which provide the filter through which we perceive.  Our perception isn’t just about the physical world, it also includes our thought life.  Learning about the default settings of our paradigm is the first step in enhancing your critical thinking skills.  You need to understand the “thought scripts,” values and assumptions that you currently are using to filter everything.  Many people think they don’t think you have any “filters” through which you view reality.  This is, of course, a false judgment about your psyche which you will immediately dispel the use of our first recommend tool, The Enneagram Personality Profile and Instinctual Test.

The Enneagram Personality Profile

The Enneagram is a simple but effective set of test questions that will enable you to define your unique default personality and instinctual stack.   Most people live fixated by this default setting because they haven’t had the opportunity to learn about the value scripts these settings have on our lives if we don’t “chose” to venture beyond them. There are several versions of the Enneagram which has been refined over the years. When people initially take the Enneagram test and review their chapter which then goes on to describe themselves in intimate detail it is often a eureka experience.  If you are honest with the test you suddenly find that you can identify with the automatic thought processes and innate value judgments of your default personality and instinctual variants.

The initial purpose of the Enneagram is to show you that much of your self-talk and value judgments are tools of the mind.  However, you have other choices and you more tools than you thought possible.  The big takeaway for the beginning stages of this critical thinking process is to learn that you are NOT your default personality you are the “Observer.”  The real “You” is the entity you are talking to inside your head.  The Enneagram Personality Profile is an intellectual approach, using the analytical ability of the mind, to learn that the mind, the personality, and our instincts are not who we are, they are tools that link consciousness with our body.

How the Enneagram Enhances your Critical Thinking

Other tools can provide an “experience” of this revelation, but the Enneagram provides the “mind” with the logical connections demonstrating how thoughts and values are predilections and preferences required as a means of connection.  So, the Enneagram Personality Profile and Instinctual variant tests are the first recommended tool for enhancing your critical thinking abilities.

What you learn from understanding how your personality works also helps you understand how others use its basic drivers to influence and control how you think, what you think and how you ascribe value judgments on almost everything.  If you learn how you can be manipulated by your personalities basic fears then you can spot the attempts to manipulate.

Once you have determined how your personality and instinctual stack then you are ready to employ the second set of “logical tools.” The second step is to study the use of argument as it relates to inductive and deductive logic.  Learning to identify a fallacy within an argument is a life-changing, lifesaving tool.  When you can see the facts from the fiction you won’t be manipulated to accepting spurious or unsubstantiated propositions.  The landscape of spirituality is littered with bogus claims, but they work because people buy the false argument.

What Are the Spiritual Technologies

As mentioned above, there are several other tools we recommend for the quest for spiritual exploration.  These spiritual technologies stand up to the test of science as having repeatable common experiential phenomena.

There are many ways to list these processes. We like this simplified method.  Some of these technologies could be in more than one category:

  • The application of logical reasoning. This includes both deductive and inductive reasoning. Plus several “logical tools” to sharpen the ability to discern fact from fiction.
  • Utilizing The Enneagram Personality Profile. A tool to understand the mechanisms of Ego, the personality, and instincts.  It’s also a doorway to understanding the virtues and gifts of the spirit.
  • Progressions of seated meditation. Basic Mindfulness Centering exercises through Japa Meditation and the Siddhis of Patanjali
  • Progressions of moving meditation.  These include energy collection, Forest Bathing,  Qigong, Tai Chi, Tei Ke.
  • Healing modalities including but not limited to Pejut, Reiki, and Shiatsu.
  • Awareness and consciousness expansion pathways like Forest Bathing, Lucid Dreaming, and the Shamanic Journey.

Since the best way to learn a skill is to teach it, everyone is involved in the learning process. We are all students and facilitators. The more we learn the more we can pass along.  This is mission one” for us at the Seeker Project 4 Spiritual Exploration.  Be sure to check out our Facebook Page for other interesting posts and articles.

In Conclusion

If you found this discussion helpful we can recommend some other tools.  We’ve got a list of Logical Axioms. These are simple tools to help you sort the facts from the fiction.  Also, it’s helpful to learn the common fallacies used in arguments.  Spotting Logical Fallacy will greatly assist you in sorting out the facts from the fiction.

If these processes seem interesting please click on the blended learning process to learn more.   It’s all part of what Joseph Campbell called the Hero’s Journey.  If this article resonates with you there are more on our blog. Check out the spiritual exploration learning options, and our page under FAQ. All images by Unsplash.

 

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