The connection between misery and the level of your deep curiosity factorthe book "Curious" and I am looking at curiosity waxing and waning in my life, in different periods.
I am in the intensely curious phase. I am able to look at things that I don't like, and I am seeing those things in a wide field of neutral or maybe even positive things... insignificant dot in the big picture.
The same things, in my incurious phases would drive me nuts, or depressed... maybe even suicidal. Or on a fixing campaign... ranting and raving.
Curiosity seems to be the factor that stands out the most between my miserable periods and my periods of life that are OK or maybe even enjoyable.
There are two types of curiosity, as I can see it:
- gossipy curiosity: anything that moves, anything that's different, anything that other people are talking about, anything fashionable, weird, or "cute"...Ever since aol's famous "You got mail!" it's been social media, email, youtube, snapchat, instagram... all serving the gossipy curiosity, and creating the "ADD" illusion...
Maybe there is no such "thing" as ADD... maybe it is a self-induced addictive behavior, a smoke screen to avoid dealing with anything that requires effort, requires applying yourself. No depth... and utter misery.
- Deep, abiding, not fleeting curiosity that goes deep and wide.Deep... ok, I guess you can get it. But wide? wouldn't it be the same fruitless, addictive, staying on the surface as the one plaguing most of humanity in this century?
No. The fluttery, moth-like attraction is mindless, and even though it looks wide, it is "done" with a minuscule narrow cone of vision... the guarantee that you'll have heart palpitations, and strong emotional reactions, fears, horror, grief, regret, disgust, cuuute!, glee... because you cannot see the rest of the world while you are zooming in on stuff...
Whereas the second type of curiosity constantly weaves the new knowledge into the fabric of all knowledge, like fire ants creating a raft to survive the flood.
No matter what happens, you are above water, in the life-giving oxygen... Emotionally. You are connected to Life.
- There is a third type of "curiosity" the going so deep, you are in the caverns of hell...I have been there, and it was OK... but I would not call it curiosity. I would call it "underground living".
The going deep but narrow. The nerd. The "professional" knowing nothing, caring about nothing outside of their narrow slice of cake.
Ignorant in the world, boring in company, and dead to Life.
Is this curiosity? No... this is the type of curiosity that is not curiosity.
Now, how do you get curious if you are not curious?
If you are the moth-type curious, then you may need to do some changes in your eating, and other habits, before you can actually settle down the incoherence that goes hand in hand with the moth-type curiosity.
I have watched deep and wide curious students go moth-like after exposure to family, crowds, a trip, a change in diet, so I am quite clear that limiting those, limiting the air in your system (vata) and limiting the brain chemical hypomania by sleeping regular hours, including weekends, and limiting lighted screen exposure, suspenseful movies, quick camera cuts...
First you need to recognize the "exciters" (is that a word?) and then gradually remove them...
Obviously you don't have to do any of this... but if you want to know how to get curious, wide and deep, the nurturing type curiosity that increases your happiness, fulfillment, sense of person-ness, sense of aliveness... then this is what you would do.
Will you? I doubt it. This is like any addiction... you need to hit bottom to make any changes.
OK, last piece: What do curious people do?
Curiosity is like being in love with discovery. With finding out stuff. With looking behind the curtain.
It's being adventurous and feel alive in the process.
No have to in curiosity.
If you are researching something because you need it, it's not curiosity, it's a have to.
And yet, I have noticed that even when I am researching, I may accidentally see something, from the corner of my eyes, and get a "ding" of delight...
But truth be told: I don't like researching. I love discovering. It comes from the spirit wanting to fly...
Dutiful, on the other hand, is all from the ego, from survival, from limiting life.
Moths live a short life. Burrowing animals live a short life.
But trees that grow towards the sky live long, and live in the light.