the nutritional mystery – introduction | essays & thoughts

Until very recently on the timeline of humanity, all humans believed in The Mystery – the unfathomable organizing force behind the geometry of flower petals, the twinkle in your eye and the arc of the stars.  It was humbling.  That humility enabled cooperation – aka civilization.  For all the good the Enlightenment brought, it also ‘conquered’ that Mystery – and most unfortunately, humility.

In our time, uncertainty (the modern name for The Mystery) is considered a weakness in humans. The big appeal of many great leaders, pop stars advertisers and thinkers / philosophers is their certainty. We are drawn to them because, finally, someone’s figured it out. “I can’t find a mate because I used the wrong perfume or deodorant. If I use Aphrodite’s $400 per ounce perfume, or John Wayne’s Open Carry Cologne, I will be more attractive!” With certainty, life becomes simple. We can proceed to the checkout counter high on our potential, our future cool and the coming avalanche of the opposite sex without all those nagging doubts.

Doubt is considered ‘evil’ these days, so we are drawn to passionate talking heads and self appointed ‘experts’ online who explain mysterious things (things the greatest and smartest scientists are struggling to understand) in simple language – and we fall for it. This has been the main power tool of preachers, politicians, snake oil salesmen – guitar makers – anyone trying to reach into your wallet or heart. Mighty empires of cash and power have been built on the slippery shoulders of certainty. Look inside yourself and check it out – for most of us it’s the mother of happiness. Knowledge is power, right?  Some is, but some diminishes us and can change us from the miraculous, loving wonderbeings we were born as into violent, angry, antisocial, resentful and confused zombies, having had the life sucked out of us by people wanting our minds, our power, our money and our attention.  

The problem is, we storm the capitol, wage war on innocent people, kill pop stars, assasinate wonderful leaders, suddenly turn on loved ones and crucify our critics because we are convinced they are evil.  So it makes dark sense that historically we have been inspired to eliminate friends and shamans of uncertainty (nearly all of the great prophets).  Why?  It undermines the sales pitch of those passionate, charismatic leaders who depend on the shiny lure of certainty for their income, leverage, lovers and power!

The odd thing is, most all of the greatest thinkers, the spiritual giants say the opposite. ‘Thy will be done.”  Why is that?  Because people who don’t know all the answers tend to be more respectful of others and they’re harder to con – but mainly because inner peace, which is beyond confident, comes from trust in the fundamental design of existence.  We belong here and are headed in the right direction, thank you Jesus, Buddha, Lao Tzu etc!  

The big game of life seems to be learning that we don’t know.  From that, beautiful curiosity and appreciation of the simplest things – like breathing or having a heart beat, having a friend or falling in love – can bring more happiness than ten thousand bottles of Open Carry Cologne.  Because it can’t be bought, is priceless.

It feeds our souls what we’ve been thirsting for since the openness of childhood collapsed into the solitary confinement of adulthood.

All this came to Richard in late 2009.  It absolutely changed him at the root level.  Click on The Nutritional Mystery to see his first expression of this idea: