“The faculty to think objectively is reason; the emotional attitude behind reason is that of humility. To be objective, to use one’s reason, is possible only if one has achieved an attitude of humility, if one has emerged from the dreams of omniscience and omnipotence which one has as a child…Humility and objectivity are indivisible, just as love is.” Erich Fromm – The Art of Loving
Coincidentally this week and for a good portion of last week, Fromm’s words on faith, on love, on objectivity have been re-visiting my heart and mind. It’s a lovely coincidental reality because I also make sure to see what Rob Brezsny has to say for my sign every week. Guess what’s on the menu? OBJECTIVITY.
Humility stands out right now as I reflect on Fromm’s words. It’s difficult to nurture a wellspring of humility within when self-doubt rules because the overweening compensation for self-doubt and feelings of inadequacy is … pride, defensiveness, fear, neurotic scrambling for rightness and then, of course, objectivity is impossible.
We can be objective when bathed in a love that loves regardless of the worst of flaws. The flaws within. Once we settle that skirmish, subjective, narcissistic tendencies wane. And our objectivity shines. I’ve found, over the years of parenting, solidifying friendships and bridging the gaps created by divorce, that I can withdraw from conclusions and just be with the struggles that inevitably emerge in life. Just be with them. Stand with those involved and not assert a solution or an idea for best practice. What happens? Things work out. Life is perpetually conspiring to bring us to a place of wholeness, of wisdom, of personal growth and it goes smoothly when the need to control, form a subjective opinion of what REALLY matters in a given situation is…released. Is this always true, is there never a need to stand up and speak a viewpoint, draw a conclusion, form an opinion, flow out in emotional response or reaction (there’s a difference!)…no. But the need to defend self first, to reference me first, to react from a place of fear, of being seen as wrong, as flawed, as less than best as as as…when that dies, something beautiful (unhindered soul) unfolds.
Here’s to the humming warmth of a sun shining fearless awareness without bias…