Disarming

Charles Eisenstein is brilliant but not dazzling, deep but his themes have connect with something in me that says “Yes, I always knew this.”

His own bio sketch is here.   Excerpts follow…

I was a very sensitive, intellectual, and dreamy child. I was always consumed by questions like, “Where did I come from?””Why am I here?” “Where am I going?” so of course, embedded as I was in a culture that sees science and reason as the source of truth, I tried to “figure out” the answers. I graduated from Yale University with a degree in Mathematics and Philosophy, but my development of reason and intellect brought me no closer to any truth I really cared about.

My quest had an emotional dimension as well. From an early age I sensed a wrongness in the world. Sitting in a classroom doing worksheets, part of me rebelled. “We are not supposed to be doing this! It isn’t supposed to be this way.” It was a half-formed thought, embedded in a cloud of indignation and bewilderment.

All my professional work became intolerable. It became excruciating to do work I didn’t care about. Even though a million reasons told me why it was irresponsible, impractical, and foolish to quit, I eventually could not make myself do it anymore…The old world dissolved, and the contractions birthing me into the new took the form of a collapse of all that I once held onto. I went through divorce, bankruptcy, and exhaustion. I had to let go of a “life under control.” In my helplessness, I accepted help.

This is the part of a bio where one implies that one has arrived at some exalted state of success, all mistakes safely in the past. Well, I’m not the guy who has got it all figured out. I know that my books and other work comes from a deep, inspired source, but that source is not me. This knowledge is as much my teacher as it is anyone else’s. I’m kind of ordinary, compared to some of the amazing people I keep meeting. I’m just as much in the learning as anyone else, wandering as best I can toward “the more beautiful world my heart knows is possible,” encumbered by the programming and the wounds of our civilization.

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