By Luke Hey.
Do you know what I love? Finding new ways to inquire!
And being a facilitator of the Living Inquiries has afforded me the opportunity to find many different and interesting ways to unhook the velcro of thoughts. I want to share with you some of these ideas to use as techniques during your own inquiry. Think of this as a tips and tricks guide to keep the mind on its toes.
I hope to write this within the context that inquiry can be used in other ways, and at other times, rather than just when we are suffering. It seems more often than not that inquiry is something to pull out when we are in the throes of suffering, rather than as an interesting perspective to see daily life. Using inquiry in this way has some unexpected benefits, but I will let you find this out for yourself.
I am not claiming ownership for any of this, nor do I imagine that all of this is new to you. Most of the insights about this have come through self-inquiry and inquiry with clients. I am also happy if you want to comment or email and tell me what you think and what your experiences are. So without further ado, here’s the first inquiry.
Where is the ‘my’ of my hand?
When I was younger I used to stay at my aunty and uncle’s house. They have a son the same age as me and we got along very well and went to the same university and work. Their house was much closer to both places, than my parents’ house, so I stayed there most of the week.
Now this family is a very Christian family, with very strong values and ideas about Christianity. This was evident in the way they lived and their reference to the bible and Jesus through daily life. On Sunday evenings around the dinner table they would bring out the bible and discuss passages together as a family. It was very interesting to me, although not, I guess, for the reasons they would have hoped. I would stop them at times, asking various (and probably very annoying) questions. Some of the ideas put forth didn’t make a lot of sense to me (and still don’t) and at the time we would have some interesting discussions.
This came to a head one evening when I asked my uncle how it is he knew there was a God. He looked at me a little exasperated, then looked around for an answer. Finally some recognition came to his face and he beamed at me. Just look around, he said. Look at your hand. And we did. He continued on about how God gave us the use of this wonderful appendix, but I had stopped listening. I had taken what he had said literally. Of course! Why couldn’t God be found in my hand! If she is somewhere here at all why not there. Needless to say, I spent lots of time from then on just staring at my hand, looking for God.
So…sitting here now, I look at my hand. It seems to be my hand but what is it that tells me that? It seems familiar, small like a hobbit’s with stubby little fingers. I recognise the lines on the palm, the fingernails. But all of these are just thoughts that come through the mind. When those thoughts fade away, what do I see? Where is the ‘my’ of my hand?
Maybe they aren’t my hands, but God’s hands. Maybe not. But it’s probably worth a look at least.
Just a thought…
To read more about Luke Hey, click here.