First Contact

irst Contact, prior to cognition (judgement) is to sense (inquiry), inquiry must come from a place of neutrality, a studied naivete, mushin no shin (無心の心) ‘mind without mind’ and with provisional confirmation of first contact, initiate a first test of assumption, a deliberate cognitive act based on the contextual environment.

In most of human civilization today, the concept of testing one’s own perceptions, presumptions, to habitually query ourselves for implicit biases with studied discipline is utterly foreign.

When the topic is raise a cacophony of improbable rationalizations dismissing it a too laborious and time consuming emerges in conversations under the best of conditions while more frequent is a polite yet brittle assertion they already do so very well, thank you, with no amplifier to suggest how they accomplish this feat.

Finally, no small number of people react to the idea of critical self-reflection as tantamount to a negation-of-self, as if to embrace any form of self-doubt as a threat to the integrity of their self-identity, a kind of suicide.

In a way this fear is true. The death-grip most of us have on a fragile construct of identity can be transformed by a single, discovered and dispelled implicit bias.

Truth and Comfort are rarely traveling companions. My perception is that many people conflate the concepts of comfort and peace, while in real life experience, they are nothing of a kind.

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