Curiosity is an admirable trait I encourage everyone to cultivate within one’s self. Curiosity is the ability to wonder and ask questions, and then have the courage and willingness to seek out the answers and experiences to satiate that wonder.
Perhaps you are a very curious person, but you’ve grown up in a society that looks down on everything unconventional and so you’ve hidden your curiosity or have convinced yourself that it is no longer appropriate for you to be curious anymore. Most adults assume they “know everything”; they limit their own growth by snuffing out the light of their curiosity. Such a shame! They do so because their age (society’s conventions) dictates what behavior is appropriate. If you’re an adult, you’re supposed to “have it all figured out”. Being curious is the humility, willingness and openness to say, “Yes, I don’t know, but I would like to.”
Curiosity is good for your spirit. And I’m going to elaborate on why.
1) You become more intelligent.
I’ve made it a habit where if I don’t understand something and I’m in the vicinity of someone who might know, I always ask. Before, I equated asking with being stupid. A harsh belief, but it’s more commonly adopted than you think! People just don’t like admitting it. If you don’t ask, you will never know! Those who are afraid of asking questions are ashamed of acquiring knowledge.
More often than not, the people around you, (let’s say you were with a friend), didn’t know either. They were probably secretly wondering to themselves what “that thing” meant or how it worked, but were too afraid to speak up for themselves. And if they do know, they can tell you!
It’s not a big deal. Life is about learning. Learning is life. Ask away!
2) You have new experiences.
Have you ever wondered what it would feel like if you went for a walk without shoes? Or what your artistic skills were like if you sat outside for a bit and painted a scene of the passing clouds? Or if you talked to a certain person? Or if you took a different route home? Or if you went into that store that has always tantalized you? Or if you ordered something different? Or if you tried a new exercise? Or if you read about a new philosophy? Or if you hung out with different people you usually hang out with? Or if you lived in another part of the world for a few months? What would life be like?
Only one way to find out! Go do it!
3) You find your way in this life.
To ask questions, you must first become aware of life. You must become aware of your surroundings. What’s going on? What’s right and what isn’t? Why does it have to be this way? Are there any other ways? What is truth? Why are we alive? What is the point? Is there a point?
Once you start to become aware of life, the questions naturally flow. Once you start asking questions—TRULY START TO ASK QUESTIONS—then your journey has begun. You are now (consciously) on your way.
SEEK AND YOU WILL FIND.
“Truth cannot be borrowed. It cannot be studied in books. Nobody can inform you about it. You have to sharpen your intelligence for yourself, so that you can look into existence and find it.” — OSHO
4) You destroy ignorance.
“Ignorance is bliss.”
Ignorance is spiritual death! Ignorance is like covering your experience of life in a blanket of lies. Although it is warm and comforting, it is a prison. You cannot grow. You cannot see. You cannot experience LIFE in all its magnificent glory. You remain trapped in your ignorant comfort; in your false knowledge, in your conditioning.
Ignorance must be overcome and we do so by having the courage to be curious.
5) You grow.
“Evolution is intrinsic to man’s nature, evolution is his very soul. And those who take themselves for granted remain unfulfilled; those who think they are born complete remain unevolved. Then the seed remains the seed, never becomes a tree, and never knows the joys of spring and the sunshine and the rain, and the ecstasy of bursting into millions of flowers.” — OSHO
6) You stand out.
Everyone subscribes to a code in this life; or what we most commonly refer to as the “norm” of society. Curiosity allows you to question the norm and whether it is sane or not, right for you or not, right for the world or not. And if it’s not, if you have the courage, you destroy that norm within you so that you can live your own truth.
Just because it’s “normal” (whatever that means), and everyone does it, doesn’t mean it’s right. Think for yourself. Decide for yourself. Live for yourself. Be hungry and curious for more.
7) You help change the world.
I learned the hard way that you cannot change the world by fighting against it. You can only change the world by changing yourself. Joseph Campbell once said that “if you really want to help this world, what you will have to teach is how to live in it”.
This is true. Oprah once said, “you transform the world when you transform yourself.” It’s the same universal concept that many successful and enlightened people have realized. And now, so have you.
How exactly do we change the world by being curious? By being courageous enough to let go of the “old” and have the willingness to bring the “new” into this world by embracing it, being it. We abolish old mentalities, beliefs, philosophies, ways of life, systems, by LIVING new mentalities, beliefs, philosophies, lifestyles, paradigms. And we can only do so by taking the first step to wonder. It transition automatically shifts but it is a slow process. Which is why we must all, individually have the courage to light the way if we are to make this world a better place.
It’s only by leading by example do people truly listen. We are able to know the path to a brighter future by “standing on the shoulders of our forefathers” who had the courage to light the way.
Curiosity is asking, What if? It’s wondering if there’s another way. It’s envisioning another way. And then making our way to that new vision.
There are many benefits to being curious. The most beneficial, in my opinion, is number three. You find your way in this life. Life can be like a kind of maze. Some people give up on themselves and stop searching for the red thread that leads to everything they could ever conceive of; they sit, stagnant in their sorrow. Then there are the others who continue to ask questions. What if I went this way? What if I did this instead? And it’s usually those same people who we think insane. “He’s going to go exploring and then he’s going to die. It’s much safer to stay right here.”
Then he goes off, experiences the world in all its glory, comes across all kinds of beautiful and magnificent treasures no one would believe if he told them, all because he asked, What if?