When I was about 7 we moved into a new house. I remember some carpenters working on our new kitchen and being very interested in what they were doing. Apparently I hounded them with questions and at a certain moment one of them snapped at me with “Why? Why? Why? Why?”. My questsions immediately stopped.
In hindsight I don’t blame anyone, trying to work with a 7 year old bombarding you with questions will test your patience. What I did take away from this though is how easy it is to destroy a small child’s curiosity and stop them from asking the most important question of all, “Why?”. Sir Ken Robinson brilliantly talks about how this works in our edcuation system.
I never stopped wondering “why?”, although I probably didn’t bombard anyone anymore, and this has been a theme of my whole life. Why do people look up to people in power? Why do people not listen to rational arguments? Why do people do things that are obviously not in their best interest? Why do people so often choose profit over people? Why, on earth, do people still believe the BS around BTC? etc.
Obviously the “Why?” questions of the last years are not the same as when I was 7, but one of the interesting things about getting older is that the answers are not the same either. With increased knowledge and experience you find new answers to old “Why?” questions and in some instances you drop your previous answer to a question in favour of nothing.
Maybe even more important than trying to find the answers to “Why?”, is the realization that in some cases it does not matter “Why?”. Things are often very difficult, if not impossible to explain, so for peace of mind acceptance might be more important than getting an answer. Accepting things as they are and just letting them be can be even more liberating, and give greater peace of mind than getting an answer to a question. As Eckhart Tolle said:
“When you live in complete acceptance of what is, that is the end of all drama in your life.”
But, why does that actually work?