To want to see clearly is a true act of fearlessness. To open our heart and mind, to be open to what life is offering us in this moment, requires tremendous courage and steadfastness.
In the openness, we will encounter the information we pushed away, the messages we wouldn't hear, the ideas we rejected, the people we made invisible.
Our openness also invites in penetrating emotions—grief, sorrow, love, compassion.
We do not create the space of clear seeing with our usual methods. No questioning, no analysis, no distinctions—just bearing witness to what's present. The less we sort, judge, categorize or distinguish, the more we see and feel.
Without our usual filters and boundaries, we stop feeling repulsed or threatened or thrilled. We discover that we're much larger than our usual boundedness. In fact, we're big enough to take it all in.
And wonderfully true, the more open we become, the less fear is present. Fear does a very good job of keeping us from being present filling us with thoughts about what might happen in the future, or what seemed to have happened in the past.
But in this present moment, fear is nowhere to be found. Clear seeing has no fear. We are in this very moment released from fear's mesmerizing grip.
To be free from fear, we merely need to be in the present moment. Then we can see clearly.
Margaret Wheatley is an American writer and management consultant who studies organizational behavior. This piece is excerpted from her book Perseverance.
SEED QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: How do you relate to the notion that we are big enough to take it all in? Can you share a personal story of a time you bore witness with complete openness? What helps you fearlessly commit to wanting to see clearly?