Every day I receive Mary Holland’s Naturally Curious blog. Most days I read it and learn new tidbits about nature, like how a certain kind of dragon fly lays its eggs in cattails, or how father loons take turns with the mother in feeding their young. Each day I learn something new. I enjoy learning new things.
This was not always the case. As a child learning felt dangerous because it was something that did not always come easily. When I struggled with my lessons I felt as though I was a failure. It makes me sad to think back on how many years I spent paralyzed by my own fear, afraid to try to learn new things because I thought that I might not being able to fully absorb or understand them. Had I not gone to North Country School, where my brother, Richard got his fresh start before me, I hate to think where I would have ended up. But I am living proof that one can heal even the most frightened brain into learning again.
I’m convinced that much of the reason we don’t learn as much as we might is due to fear. Fear of failure, fear that we won’t understand, or aren’t capable of learning in the first place, fear that we won’t be as good as the next person, and so on… I’m sure I’m not alone.
What would happen if we could remove our fear? I imagine a door opening to a sky of mind; wings spread wide, mouth open in wonder, eyes like binoculars on a distant horizon. What magnificent surprises are in store behind every door? The mystery of life unlocks our imaginations, inviting us beyond our comfort zone to new landscapes of knowledge.
Having said this, I realize I still lack many fields of knowledge. You don’t hear much from me about the political landscape, and only occasionally on social causes. I have had to reconcile with my limitations even as I expand my enthusiasm for learning. Why? Because I move in the direction of my passion.
My passion is healing. I never trained as a doctor or nurse but I have been on the sidelines, peeking through doorways to mind/body healing, social & emotional literacy, and planetary & spiritual healing. Every time I connect with someone there’s the possibility of healing. That’s why I love writing my blog each week — and reading your responses. You are helping me to grow and learn, and I hope that in some way I am also being helpful to you.
It doesn’t matter if we talk about human rights or turtle eggs. The key to learning is being open to the possibilities. What a great privilege it is to make learning a daily practice.
How do you learn?
What do you like to learn about?
P.S. In case you think there’s something strangely wrong with the picture above, my husband just informed that the sexual organs of some female dragonflies are behind their head! Go figure!