The Value of Staying in the Dark

I’m recycling this post from February 2019. The message about not needing to know everything all the time is still a valid one. Enjoy.

My therapist said something to me this week that I’d heard before but this time I really heard. He told me, “There are some things you don’t need to know.” I’m a curious person and want to know everything! Curiosity is a key component of being a journalist; it’s my job to find out as much as possible about a story. However, truly, there are some things I don’t need to know.

I understand this concept better when I think of children. Children are not served by hearing the full details of scary or complex things. We don’t tell them graphic details of war or rape. We may paint with broad brushstrokes or present information in a way they understand, but children don’t need to know everything.

In many spiritual traditions, God/higher power/the divine is parentified. We are usually called divine children of God or a variation of that, and so it follows that higher power treats us the same way a parent would, meaning, the universe shields us from certain information. I’ve said before if I knew all the things the universe had in store for me, I would get overwhelmed. That continues to be true. After contemplating I don’t need to know everything about the future, I feel more at ease. I feel more at peace. I trust that while in my professional life it’s my job to gather as much information as possible, the same doesn’t apply to my personal one.

in the dark

Sometimes it’s OK to be in the dark. Photo by Molly Blackbird on Unsplash

We have the saying, “Ignorance is bliss.” I usually think about that expression with wistfulness, wishing I could go back in time and remain ignorant of bad news. Or I utter it with envy, wishing I could be like someone else who doesn’t know what I know. However, maybe I can continue to experience bliss in the form of ignorance by remembering I don’t have to answer every question; I don’t have to know what will happen next. Maybe it’s OK for me to be in the dark sometimes and trust it’s for a good reason. Perhaps I can relax into the knowledge I am still a child and there is still a parent taking care of me. Not my birth parents, although them too, but also an unseen parent, a mystical parent.

My spiritual teacher says Cosmic Consciousness must look after us, the divine children. He also said this Cosmic Consciousness does whatever is best for us, and that this divine energy better knows our needs and necessities.

“A child of two months does not know what she requires; her mother knows,” he wrote. “She is solely dependent upon her mother. Similarly, devotees are solely dependent on the Cosmic Father, and for that reason, the Cosmic Father has a special responsibility.”

For today anyway, I’m feeling into that more, letting myself be a child. I’m letting myself swim in ignorance, recognizing the bliss that comes with it. I’m remembering I don’t need to know everything. That sometimes there’s value in staying in the dark.

I dream of a world where we realize sometimes it’s OK to not know. A world where we understand that sometimes being in the dark is what’s best. A world where we realize we are like children and there is a force greater than us in the world. A world where we remember that force is here, acting as our parent.

Another world is not only possible, it’s probable.

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