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The Explorimenter’s Manifesto

  • 30 min read

Becoming an explorimenter is one of the most powerful things you can do for your personal growth.

While I’ve never written about it (or seen anyone else do so), it has been a foundational element of my life philosophy for as long as I can remember.

Perhaps even the most important element.  Because it allows me to continuously question all other aspects of my approach to life and test how strongly they are rooted in reality.

What is an explorimenter?

If you haven’t heard of it, don’t worry.  A quick Google search revealed that apparently, I came up with it myself.

As you might have guessed, explorimenting is an amalgam of exploring and experimenting.

An explorimenter is someone who will regularly venture into the unknown.  And who consciously questions the things they already believe to be known.

They frequently look at their map of reality and identify the unexplored areas:

  1. Which parts of your map have you accepted as “accurate” even though you didn’t do an in depth expedition yet?  (In other words: they were drawn without factual evidence, or drawn by someone else)
  2. Which areas of reality still lay beyond your map?

They then go on repeated explorations to those areas, using curiosity as their compass.

On each exploration, they will conduct experiments to gather data and gain a deeper understanding of the areas they are exploring.

Then, if they didn’t fall off the edge of the earth, they will come back and update their map to the best of their ability.

If you’re ready to change your life by embarking on your own explorimentation journey, then read on…

Let’s get you familiar with the 10 commandments of explorimenting!

#1. An Explorimenter Learns Through Experience

An explorimenter understands that knowledge can only be trusted when gained through experience.

They understand that each experience we have, only gives us anecdotal evidence. And that it takes repeated experiments to get a good understanding of something.

They accept that gathering experiential knowledge can take years of effort. And that because of that, we’ll always have to navigate life based on incomplete information.  We’ll have to put our trust in theories that haven’t been proven yet. And to remain vigilant of the fact that they haven’t been.  So that we don’t cling to them like dogma.

Learning experientially is something that most of us naturally do as an adolescent.

For example, many teenagers go through the following phase of explorimentation:

  1. Their parents or teachers tell them “Drugs are bad… mmmkay?” . They might even list some specific ways in which drugs can fudge up your life.
  2. Another adolescent -who is much cooler than those lame adults- offers them drugs.  They try the drugs and discover that they really aren’t as bad as the adults made it seem.  And that some of the things they were warned about, turned out to be false.
  3. Eventually, they might try some riskier drugs. And find out that yes, they can be bad for you.  …and also, that they seel extremely similar to what the adults are getting prescribed by their doctors.  Or their hyperactive classmates are taking to stay focused.
  4. In the end, they hopefully discover both the risks and the benefits of these substances in a fairly safe way.  Now they have experiential knowledge that allows them to make wise, adult decisions on this topic.

Adolescents specifically exploriment in the areas that involve risk-taking and rule-breaking.

But conscious, adult explorimenters apply this same principle to every single area of life.

“Who says you can’t have fries and ice cream together?  Have you actually tried it?”

#2. An Explorimenter Is Comfortable With Not Knowing

One of the forces that stop people from being a proper explorimenter is fear of the unknown.

It is one of our most deep rooted and primal fears.  

So much that we’d rather convince ourselves we know exactly how everything works, than just admit we’re basically winging it in life.

The irony of course being that when we pretend we know something, we lose the ability to learn about it. So it actually remains unknown.  And on top of that, the fact that it’s unknown is also unknown.  Which makes it an unknown unknown.  (Oooh… double scary ;-))

On the other hand, admitting that we don’t know something, reminds us, that it is ripe for further exploration.

Someone who’s not comfortable with not knowing might:

  • Have an opinion about everything
  • Not be open to changing that opinion
  • Argue to defend the opinion
  • Avoid doing certain things because they “already now what’s going to happen”
  • Judge others from behaving in ways that defy the norm
  • Be inflexible in their approach to life
  • Repress their natural curiosity
  • Blame others or lash out when reality doesn’t conform to their expectations

An explorimenter, comfortable with not knowing:

  • Frequently says “I don’t have an opinion” or “I don’t know”
  • Seeks to understand and explore another’s perspective
  • Is willing to change their mind when conflicting information arises
  • Is willing to try irrational or bizarre things to just to see what will happen
  • Is willing to  try things with uncertain outcomes
  • Doesn’t worry about conforming to other’s expectations
  • Has an adaptable life strategy
  • Always seeks to gather more data
  • Is neutral about the outcome of that data
  • Adjusts their expectations to reality

Which brings us to the next commandment…

#3. An Explorimenter Questions Everything, But Doesn’t Discard It

“Question everything” is an overused phrase.

And let’s be honest, most people who use that phrase, fail to apply it.  

Sure, they’re willing to question mainstream media and culture.  But they have already decided in advance what the answer to that question should be (that mainstream media is always wrong).  And when they find something that supports their favorite belief, they definitely don’t question those sources with the same scrutiny.

So what do I mean when I say “Question everything but don’t discard it?”

Let’s start with the “Question everything” part.

Once upon a time, there was a family with a custom of slicing the ends off sausages before cooking them. A tradition passed down through generations.

One day, a curious young family member asked the question: Why do we cut the ends off our sausages before cooking them?”

Nobody could provide a clear answer. So the family embarked on a journey back through the annals of their ancestry. Only to find that this practice had been in their family’s history for as long as memory served. They asked their older relatives. But even those didn’t have a definitive explanation.

In their quest for answers, they finally reached out to their great-great-great-grandmother. Who somehow, just to support this story, was still alive and breathing.

“Triple-G-grandma…. Why do we always slice the ends off our sausages before cooking?”, asked the curious kid.

Visibly shocked, her oldest ancestor alive replied:

“Holy shizzles!  Are you people still cooking with that same tiny pan my mother used?  Nowadays, the stores are full affordable pans that can fit an uncut sausage inside.”  She said, inappropriately giggling about the last 5 words of her sentence.

This story (passed on to me by my father as part our own family traditions), illustrates the importance of questioning everything.

Unless we know exactly why and how something is the way it is…

  • In society
  • In our own mind
  • In another person’s behavior
  • In the information we receive

…we can never know whether it’s appropriate or not.

That means that when we read something that excites us, as explorimenters, we postpone our excitement.  And we first seek to prove AND disprove the idea through experimentation.

For example:

  • I once read that changing your body language could change the way you feel.  To test that, I looked at movie characters, friends, etc. and changed my entire body language to theirs for a while.  Then I observed: Did I feel different emotions? Did I think different things? Is it true that my body can change my mind?
  • I once read that your words create your reality.  So I did an experiment of complaining about literally everything for 48 hours, followed saying that I loved everything for 48 hours.  Did my reality change or not?  Try for yourself!
  • Lots of other guys told me women were only attracted to assholes.  So I consciously experimented with seducing people while remaining friendly and honest.  (What happened next may suprise you!)

As illustrated by the tale of the shortened sausages, wisdom  isn’t really wisdom if it was just accepted second-hand.

Remember fear of the unknown?  

Second hand knowledge, is the most common form of unknown unknowns.  That’s why, for your own safety, it’s important to always question everything.

…but don’t discard it!

The problem with the mindset of questioning everything is that it often stems from being a rebel without a cause.  Instead of from genuine curiosity.

In a healthy way, questioning everything means:

  1. Being open to discovering that the thing you questioned is 100% legit
  2. Being open to discovering it’s not, but that there’s currently no better alternative
  3. Most of all, questioning your own motives behind the questioning

Think of something you’re actively protesting against.

When we find ourselves rebelling against something, the first question to ask is:

What if this thing I’m against, is actually a good thing…but I just don’t understand it yet?

If you’re not willing to accept that as a possibility, it means your reason for rebellion is not a desire for truth.  There is another psychological motivation driving  you.

Because if our reason to rebel was truly that we wanted to question things or make the world a better place… then we would be open to the tiny possibility, that what we’re rebelling against is actually a thing that does good in the world.  In fact, we should be delighted at that possibility.  Because it would mean we can stop fighting.  

Think about that.  What would it mean to you, if you found out that the thing you’re against is actually a good thing.  And you can stop fighting it now?

Does it bring up feelings of resistance?

If so…why?  What would be bad about discovering that something you hate is great?

Being an explorimenter is a rebellious act by nature.  But an explorimenter only takes a stand for (or against) something, when they truly under-stand it (which is rare).

When an explorimenter finds themselves against something, they will always explore the following questions:

  1. WHY am I against it? (What do I value that is opposite to this?  What personal needs am I fulfilling by being against it?)
  2. What are the possible value and functions of this thing?  What’s good about it?
  3. What are my stories about this thing?  Can I separate them from the facts?
  4. If it’s not good for me, can it be good for someone else?  
  5. What stories might that someone else have about this thing?

If we don’t answer these questions, not only are we standing on an unstable foundation …it’s also quite possible that we’re taking a stand in service of someone who indoctrinated us into a certain belief system.

Speaking of indoctrination.  We explorimenters have another trick up our sleeves to protect ourselves from that:

#4. An Explorimenter Plays with Perspectives

Explorimenters understand and accept that the whole truth of most things is too complex for us to understand.

But that each possible perspective gives us a glimpse of it.  And the more perspectives we play with, the closer we get.

When 30 people are sitting in a circle around a beautiful sculpture, each of them will notice different things about it.  But none of them will see the entire sculpture.

2 people sitting next to each other will be able to point out a few details which are missing from the other person’s view.

But 2 people sitting on opposite sides, if they’re willing to listen deeply to each other, can increase their understanding of that sculpture by 100%.

Of course, the understanding gained through that conversation would be second hand knowledge.

So the optimal way to learn about the sculpture is to play with your own position around it.  And continue to do so until you’ve seen it from every angle.

When it comes to perspective, it is no different with anything else in life.

That is why one of the core activies of explorimenters is changing our perspectives with regards to everything all the time.

This is a way to avoid rigid, dogmatic beliefs.  And it also helps us ensure that our map of reality looks just a little more like reality itself, month after month, year after year.

Explorimenters are not just willing to listen to strange, unusual or controversial perspectives from others.  They’re willing to actually play with that perspective and hold it themselves for a while.  Especially when they feel resistant towards doing so.

Eventually, some perspectives prove to be more enjoyable or empowering than others. Just like the sculpture in my analogy might look better from certain angles. (Especially if it has a nice butt.  Am I right?).  

When a perspective works particularly well for us, we can make the choice to keep it for years or even decades.  But we always remember that, being just a perspective, it is by definition ignorant of some things.  And that those things may be obvious to someone who looks at life differently.

Every single post on this blog is a perspective.  And I always select perspectives which have worked well for me.  But different perspectives may work well for different people.  Some of the things I offer, may not work for you.  And some of the things I wrote 5 years ago don’t work for me anymore.  Different perspective can be useful for you at different times.  That is why I encourage people to play with them.

Perspectives are funny that way.  They always offer us certain things, while taking away other things.  Forever incomplete.

But the more perspectives we explore and play with, the more we can integrate our memories and understandings of previous perspectives, into the current one.

Here’s a process I have used many times, and I’ve consistently been surprised by the results:

  1. Take a part of reality that seems undoubtable in your current belief systems (e.g. “God doesn’t exist, carbs are evil, Kim Kardashian doesn’t have a real job”)
  2. Now take the opposite belief: (”God is all that exists, carbs are Jesus, Kim Kardashian is my biggest business inspiration”)
  3. If you have trouble with the opposite belief ask yourself: “What kind of proof or evidence, and how much of it, would make me change my mind?”  

If the answer to step 3 is “impossible”, take a detour to question your motives behind clutching on to the belief:

  • Does this belief keep me safe?
  • Does it make me feel better than others?
  • Does it provide an explanation for a trauma that stops me from having to face the feelings?
  • What is so important for me about this belief that I wouldn’t even wanna know if I was being ignorant?

4. Find people who promote the opposite belief and allow yourself to listen to their message.

5. For the next 30 days, live and breathe this belief in EVERY SINGLE thing you. Like it is your gospel.

6. When the 30 days are over, ditch the perspective completely.

7. Review your experiences:  What was different about your experience of self this month?  What was different about reality?  What did you like about this perspective?  What did you miss from your previous perspectives ?

If this feels like a weird thing to do, then just think of like traveling to a different culture.  Because in a sense, that’s exactly what you’re doing.  It just doesn’t involve hopping on a plane and getting cool pictures for your Tinder profile.

#5. An Explorimenter Tries On Personality Traits

Your personality is a collection of traits, characteristics, and patterns of behavior that influence how you respond to various situations, interact with others, and navigate life.

Your personality also differentiates you from other people, by contrasting those characteristics against theirs.

In fact, you could say that without contrasting it to others, your personality wouldn’t even exist.  If nobody in the world was “nice”, there would be no way for you to be “rude” and vice versa.  The same is true for every aspect of your personality.

For the sake of explorimentation, it’s not necessarily important how your current personality came to exist.  What IS improtant, is that you recognize the possibility of changing whenever you want.

If that wouldn’t be true, then actors would never be able to remain in character while shooting a movie.

Knowing this, gives explorimenters the freedom to try on personality traits. Just as one might try out clothing in a store.

We can adopt a character trait, look in the mirror, and ask ourselves:

“How does it feel when I am wearing this behavior? “

For example, I’ve consciously tried out wearing the trait of arrogance for a while.

There were many things I liked about it.  But when I tried out humility, I found out I loved it even more.

Still, if I want to, I can always choose to wear arrogance for a day.  Or wear a combination of both. .

There are many ways to use this personality exploriments to our benefit.

You might try on personality traits it for practical reasons.  

Just as one might wear a wetsuit to go surfing, or shorts to go on a hike, certain personality traits can help you in certain situations.  

The traits that work for you at the swinger’s club, might not be the greatest ones to wear to the office.  But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have them hanging in your personality wardrobe somewhere.

A second way to play with them, is as a form of shadow work:  

Finding personality traits that you dislike or admire in others, and believe you don’t have.

And then consciously playing with them for a while, until you feel these traits have become more accessible to you.

#6. An Explorimenter Designs Gameworlds

Human beings constantly play with each other in structured gameworlds, sometimes without knowing it.

A Gameworld is a virtual reality with:

  • A context
  • A set of values (what’s important in the gameworld)
  • A set of rules (how to play)
  • A set of goals (how to win)
  • A definition of cheating (what’s forbidden/taboo)

As long as you are in the gameworld, the gameworld’s attributes override the rules of reality when it comes to deciding what is normal.

For example:

When you are playing Call of Duty, you can kill a bunch of people without giving it a second thought.  It doesn’t feel bad to do so.

But in the gameworld “society”, most people wouldn’t consider shooting up some random people (unless their government ordered them to do so, because then the gameworld “war” overrides the rules).

The moment we agree on certain rules and step into a gameworld, the context is switched and our reality changes.  To the point where sometimes we don’t even remember we were the ones who just chose to step in.

Ever played a board game and gotten angry about something in it?  That is how intensely a gameworld can replace your reality.  It shouldn’t matter, board games are just pieces of cardboard that don’t impact your life.  Still, people are flipping monopoly boards and raging in video games every day.  Once you step into the game, it does feel like the new reality.

Society consists of millions of interrelated gameworlds.  From tiny ones called “grocery story” or “small talk” to huge ones called “human rights”, “money” or “countries”.  Every single culture or subculture is a gameworld.

Explorimenters know that they are the ones consciously choosing to partake in each gameworld, or to step out.

Explorimenters understand that gameworlds determine what is possible for them.  And select or design their gameworlds to generate more possibilities in life. Here are some examples of that:

A. Creating Alternative Gameworlds

If you are playing in the gameworld of sexual monogamy, it is not possible to have an affair without cheating.  

If you playing in the gameworld of “job”, you can not take a random day off without discussing it with your boss.  

This doesn’t mean that those are bad gameworlds.  They can provide a lot of value and enjoyment.  All it means is that as an explorimenter, you remain aware that you can create possibilities which don’t exist in them by choosing a different gameworld with a different context, different rules and different values.

We can also create gameworlds just to gather data:

Sometimes I like to play “absolutist” games to see how they impact my life.  Like planning out every single minute of my day.  Or doing 0 planning and instead living on inspiration for 2 months.  I also did a real life “yes man” experiment, and have enjoyed my fair share of “no man” games to keep me focused.

B. Updating Existing Gameworlds

If a gameworld in’t working for you, you can always adapt it a little bit.  Demotivated at work?  What if you included some more reward and encouragement towards in that gameworld?

Little things, like throwing a one-man celebration party for meeting a deadline or giving yourself a blueberry each time you finish a task.

C. Exploring Unknown Gameworlds

A fun way to learn about life is finding existing gameworlds you haven’t played in, and explore them for a while.

An example of an experiment I did like that was play in different religious gameworlds each mouth.

Being a devout catholic for 30 days, then a radical atheist, then a disciplined buddhist.  And gathering data on which possibilities each one created or removed for me.

D. Creating Mini Gameworlds

One of may favorite ways of explorimenting with gameworlds is by creating small ones for one evening.  Like hosting theme parties or designing social games to switch up the dynamics in your friend group.  

Remember how drinking games allowed you to do stuff you’d normally judge each other for?

Well, you don’t need alcohol for that.  You can always just create a gameworld.

#7. An Explorimenter Finds Balance Through Extremes

Remember the story of the sculpture from before?

How people sitting on opposite sides of the sculpture can learn more from each other than people sitting close?

This is not only true for perspectives, but for everything we exploriment with:  

  • Habits
  • Techniques
  • Personality traits
  • Gameworlds
  • …  

The further they are removed from each other, the more there is to be gained by experimenting with both.

Eventually, understanding opposite ends of a spectrum, will help you understand what exists in the middle.  Much more quickly, than murking around in the middle will help you understand what exists on the extremes.

For example:

I spent the better part of a decade drinking daily.  Then I spent around the same amount of time being completely sober.  Eventually, I went deep enough in both directions to understand what those experiences meant to me.  

This now allows me to:

  1. Dance in the middle of the spectrum.  Like having a few high quality drinks on a Friday without getting wasted.  
  2. Choose when I might benefit from either extreme.  Like going fully sober when my mind could use it, and picking 1 or 2 nights a year to get a drunk at just the right party.

I’ve explored similar extremes in dieting styles and now have a very balanced approach to nutrition. Paying attention to my self holistically and what might nourish me most in a certain moments.

I’ve experimented with monogamy and nonmonogamy. If I hadn’t first explored the extremes, I wouldn’t have identified what I missed about the opposite side. Now my partner and I can create a relationship in which we commit to each other for life. But don’t enforce complete monogamy on each other or pretend that it will never happen that one (or both) of us is attracted to someone else.

And what that looks like in practice can evolve through time.

Because after unlocking both extremes of a spectrum as possibilities, you can start calibrating your position on that spectrum.  You do this by explorimenting with different ones until you find what works for you.

Initially this process can feel rough and choppy.  Always switching between the seemingly “binary” options of the extremes, but just making them a little less intense.

When doing this more often, we eventually achieve fluidity in moving between these positions.

Over time, this dance of “calibrating” our position across various spectrums becomes a meta skill.  

Which we can now apply to exploriment with any opposing viewpoints, characteristics or behaviors..  Resulting in more freedom, more power and more possibilities.

#8 An Explorimenter Goes Deep

A way to become less and less wrong about something is to get a holistic, nuanced understanding of it.

We create a nuanced understanding by “going deep”.   We take an area that we’re exploring, and split it up into smaller and smaller pieces.

Which we do by creating distinctions.

For example, when I wanted to improve my communication, I created initial distinctions by setting up seperate exploriments for:

  • Words
  • Vocal tonality
  • Body language
  • Eye contact

I would do exploriments like:

  • Go on a date with body language only (no speaking allowed).  
  • Saying random words, but trying to convey emotions with my voice.
  • Sit in front of a friend and have a conversation with no speaking or moving, just eye contact

Explorimenting with distinctions this way allows us to get a deeper understanding of each of them and how they relate to each other.

The beautiful thing is, that there’s no limit to the amount of distinctions you can make.  Just like a man can tell his female friend “Why do you need to by another red dress to go with those shoes?  You have 10 red dresses already!” and hear her reply “What do you mean? I have a ruby dress, a crimson dress, a scarlett dress, a chery dress…  I don’t have a wine colored dress yet!”  She understands this, because she made distinctions that he hasn’t yet.

Let’s take the distinction “vocal tonality”.

We can do exploriments about volume, pitch, speed.

With each new distinction, we gain some valuable insight about our vocal tonality as a whole.

For example:

Most people equate speed with energy when it comes to speaking.  So when they want to speak in an engaging way, they’ll speak fast.

But do the following exploriment:

Try and speak super fast, but with low energy.  Then speak super slow but with high energy.  Repeat until you discover the distinction.

You now have unlocked a part of the skill of speaking, which you didn’t have before.

The more distinctions you make, the deeper your knowledge of something becomes.

But there are certain things which can be hard to uncover without going deep alone…

#9 An Explorimenter Goes Wide

While going deep can teach us nuance, going wide is what gives us a holistic perspective.

That is why explorimenters follow their curiosity in any direction  it takes them.

Some of these directions may look random or unfocused to outsiders. (Why go down another wikipedia rabbit hole about dinosaurs instead of working on that project you’re always talking about?)

But as an explorimenter, we trust our curiosity.  Because it is a powerful energy that can take us to unexpected places.  Sure, it goes on a lot of detours.  But often those detours end up teaching us more than if would’ve gone the straight route.

Remember how going deep was all about distinctions?

By going as wide as we go deep, we can learn lessons which are hidden in the whole, rather than in the distinctions.

For example:

Imagine you are exploring skill of woodwork and it’s many distinctions.  In time, you identify a set of underlying principles that allow you to practice the skill without even needing to think of these details.  Now, when new challenges arise that you’ve never encountered before, you don’t even need to Google the solution.  Your understanding of the deeper principles of woodwork helps you come up with the solutions yourself.

Later, you learn basketball.  And after about a 100 matches, you find to your surprise that some of the underlying principles of playing good basketball are the same as the ones that helped you with woodwork.

Secretly, you’ve also been doing some deep explorimention with BDSM… and who would’ve thought?  Some of your basket ball principles actually turn out to be true in the dungeon too!

Then you read a book about the animals of the African savannah… and what’s that there on page 113?? Well I’ll eat my hat if that isn’t a lion who embodies the core principles of woodwork, windmill dunking and whipping the prom king!”

This sort of experience is not uncommon when you go both deep and wide.

And when it happens, you’ve stumbled upon a truth, which way more valuable than any collection of facts or “how to’s”.

But these truths can often be hard to put into words.  And when we manage to, they sound like abstract platitudes.

So the best way for a person to learn them is… you guessed it!  Experientially.

Another benefit to going wide is that it allows you to cross-pollinate between learned knowledge.

I learned a lot about human interactions by learning about friendship, love and connection.

Later, I also learned sales and marketing.  Which taught me a lot of interesting principles.

But occasionally, I’d be applying some classic marketing principle and wonder “Wait, what if I were to do this in a relationship?  It wouldn’t really go so well.  So what if I completely ignore this and apply what I know about relationships instead?”

Having gone deep in a variety of areas which share a commonality (in this case social psychology), helps you to expose flaws in what’s considered “common knowledge”.  And of course, you can only expose them by conducting exploriments.  Many times I thought I’d discovered a flaw in something, only to find out I was wrong when my exploriments didn’t turn out great.

#10 An Explorimenter Reconciles Opposites

Explorimenters have a particular interest in exploring opposites.  Because it allows us to gather more new knowledge in one go.

An interesting repeat experience I’ve had with exploring opposites, is this:

When I go all the way to the end of one side of a spectrum, it appears to me as if I come out on the other side.  

For example: Politically I was raised mostly left-wing by my parents.  I also grew up listening to punk rock.  So most of my belief systems were left-leaning.   I never questioned this.  It just seemed like the most sensible perspective.

At some point, I became aware that there are millions of people who think the opposite of “right” is not “left”, but “wrong”.

Isn’t that interesting?  That you can be so convinced your perspective is the most valid, when there are millions of people in the world who are convinced it sucks?

Why would we assume that our beliefs are the right ones just because we have them?

When I realized this, I started explorimenting the political perspectives on the right.

Eventually seeing how both perspectives had validity.  But the most curious thing was this:

  1. Both perspective seem to arise from a desire for living in a safe, nourishing place and keeping it that way.
  2. When you go to the extremes of either of them, it doesn’t matter in which direction you go, you end up with violence and destruction.

After many experiments with opposites, I started to see this became a strong pattern.

Take light and darkness for example.  We all know that you can’t see in pure darkness.

But if you go all the way to the “light” side, you end up with a light so bright it blinds you.

So in a way, by going all the way to one side of the spectrum, you find yourself being teleported to the others.

It seems like opposites, contain within themselves the ability to reconcile with each other.

Since as explorimenters we become familiar with more perspectives than the average person, one of the best ways in which we can serve humanity, is to find ways to facilitate.

One of the biggest tragedies I see in society is the illusion that we are in opposition to another person or group.

  • Partners thinking that the other doesn’t want to have a good relationship.
  • People seeing entire genders as toxic or inferior
  • Left versus right, your country vs mine, your race versus mine.

But we’re not as opposite as it seems. We all want the same things

  • To feel loved for who we are
  • To feel free to express ourselves
  • To feel safe and secure in our survival

And when we lack these things, or feel they are threatened, we’ll attempt to get them (usually emotions will guide us there).

We may manipulate others into meeting our needs, blatantly take from them. Or blame them for taking from us, and demand “justice”.

Ironically, such behaviors stop us from giving exactly that same love, safety and freedom to others.

Which causes them to repeat the cycle… until we’re all stuck in a loop.

Seeing the other as our enemy, oppressor, or a means to an end. Isn’t that bizarre?

We all want the same, and when we lack it, we create the opposite of what we want.  But what drives us there, is the desire for the other thing.

Sometimes I wonder what the world would look like if we could shatter this illusion.

Look into the eyes of our “enemies”… and see,  that they’re nothing but a mirror for ourselves.

Finding the love in the core of our hate.

By exploring opposites and realizing that they are one, we can do the work of depolarization that society is in desperate need of.

And hopefully, bring back that knowledge to other people.

Your Upgraded Map of Reality

By playing with perspectives, exploring opposites, going deep and going wide, we obtain little fragments of knowledge from all corners of reality.

Like a massive jigsaw puzzle, we return from each of our explorations with a new puzzle piece we can integrate into the whole.

We gather these puzzle pieces of knowledge about ourselves, about others, about life.  And eventually by going both deep and wide, we may discover that they’re all part of the same puzzle.

We can make deeper and deeper layers of disctinction. Until we fragmentized reality so much that it actually starts to look less fragmentized.

Because oddly enough, the more distinctions you make, the more you become aware of the whole that connects them.  And the more parts you’re able to see, the more you’re able to see the whole as well.

As if each new distinction is an extra pixel that upgrades the resolution of your reality.  Until the resolution is so high, that instead of a bunch clearly outlined pixels, all you can see the bigger picture.  Clearer and crisper than it has ever been to you before.

Just as white can suddenly bring you to black.  And left can look a lot like right, you may find out that all the parts start to look like they contain the whole just as much as the whole contains the parts.

But who am I to tell you what you’ll find…

You’re an explorimenter now.  You won’t take my word for it.

You’re already planning your first exploriments.

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