If you know Reality, do you need an Open Mind?
If you don’t have an Open Mind, do you know Reality?
What if, we as human beings are not wired to see reality but we see what we are programmed to see and we think it is reality.
Most people seem to agree that we should have an open mind, but at the same time believe that what they know is reality : ) : ) : )
Our thoughts, opinions and judgements walk around as REALITY for us and we get seduced by them; and never distinguish their real nature as thoughts, opinions and judgements.
How to have an Open Mind?
Suspend your reality. Give up the addiction to your reality. And be willing to see it as what it is – a thought, an opinion or a judgement.
Once you give up the addiction to your reality and are willing to discover new dimensions/ new interpretations/new perspectives – one can see that there is no REALITY available for human beings. Each one is swimming in the ocean of their opinions and judgements thinking THAT IS THE REALITY.
What can one do, if you don’t know reality?
You can bring curiosity to see others perspectives, not to agree or disagree; but to just have muiltiple perspectives. If we have multpile perspectives, we can get unstuck from our old patterns of thoughts, beliefs and actions and we have the possibility of seeing something differently, hearing newly and acting (taking actions) differently resulting in a possiblity of different results.
Do others know Reality better than you?
Ofcourse not, they are also human beings and they have their world of opinions and judgements walking around them masquerading as Reality. But when you can share perspectives, each one can grow as a person and as a leader and may be create new envrionment in our families, new collaborations and create new realities.
A powerful tool for Deep Listening, Sensing & Sense Making is the concept of 4 Levels of Listening.
Since we don’t know reality, we can have an open mind. Not only open mind, we can also learn to have open heart and open will.
Dr. Otto Scharmer of M.I.T created this framework called 4 Levels of Listening as part of Theory U – a pioneering leadership and change management theory which address 3 transfromations – transformations of business, society and self.
Within the theory, it addresses 3 transformations – transforming perception, transforming self and transforming action.
Transforming listening is part of the first phase of transforming perception.
As explained in the image above, when we can notice and suspend our opinions and judgments, we can open our mind and see with fresh eyes – discovering data which might be even contradictory to our current world view, current perception of people and situation. This is called as FACTUAL LISTENING.
If we can notice our voice of cynicism – we can redirect our attention to why people are saying what they are saying and we can discover a new world view – a view from their eyes. It creates profound emotional relatedness. This is called as EMPATHIC LISTENING or open heart listening.
When we can let go of our voice of fear and our attachment to our views, past ways of doing things etc., we can practice open will listening – which allows new possibilities to emerge. This is called GENERATIVE LISTENING.
Ofcouse, all this is relevant only if you don’t know REALITY and can bring curiosity to discover different perspectives and always remaining open.
About Author: Manoj Onkar – an Organization Develoment Consultant. Part of MANAGEMENT INNOVATIONS and also EMERGING FUTURZ ( a team of associates operating from India, Thailand, Philippines and UK). Manoj and team have cumulative more than 100 years of experience in people and organizational transformation technologies. You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org