A thinker sees his own actions as experiments and questions ― as attempts to find out something. Success and failure are for him answers above all.
― Friedrich Nietzsche
To begin with, I think you’d agree this quote prompts several comparisons and questions. Nietzsche’s concept of actions as questions and experiments seems like the concept of detachment in Buddhism.
Is there any advantage to viewing life as a series of experiments and questions? If there is an advantage, does it distance you from ownership of things and ideas? We’d have to say yes. This way of thinking keeps you from taking a position. When you “take a position” you automatically feel the need to defend it. Thus, you are more judgmental, less open-minded.
Also, doesn’t the thinker approach have similarities to the scientific approach? Here, the researcher conducts tests. Then formulates conclusions based on the results of the questions and experiments? This is in contrast to cherry-picking data to fit a preconceived conclusion? What do you think? Again, we’d have to agree.
Actions as Experiments and Questions
Attempting to find out something is the essence of what we call spiritual exploration. So, the above quote aligns nicely with our philosophy. Spiritual exploration is use of processes for exploring consciousness.
Questions and experiments are essentially what we do when we engage in meditation. When we use methods to change awareness or explore other states of consciousness. When we meditate, it is a way of asking questions about the boundaries of awareness. When we meditate, we are experimenting with consciousness. There are several types of seated and moving meditation that accomplish these changes.
Actions as experiments and questions also include the effects of several critical thinking tools. A comparative analysis is an excellent example of this kind of process. This is a scientific approach to comparative religious study. This process enables you to confront the boundaries of their own beliefs by comparing them with the components of other systems. The study of logic and mathematics also expands our awareness.
Overall, actions as experiments and questions is one way to describe spiritual exploration. This involves several processes we call spiritual technologies.
Life’s Questions and Experiments
If we think about life as an experiment of consciousness, it gives us a unique perspective.
Interested in spiritual exploration? Check out the blended learning process at the core of our teaching process. It reflects what Joseph Campbell called the Hero’s Journey. Our learning options include both face-to-face and virtual learning sessions. Please consider donating and supporting our mission. This helps others learn the knowledge for developing their path.
Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia
Friedrich Nietzsche, Daybreak: Thoughts on the Prejudices of Morality