Craving for Understanding but Reluctance to Begin
We feel a craving to understand everything all the time. Any new idea or practice seems difficult, complicated, and unclear, simply by virtue of being new. But, along with our desire for comfort and safety, we also crave understanding, falling prey to the notion that clarity yields safety and certainty. When an unfamiliar situation lacks clarity, we tend to label the agents of change as "wrong."
For example, the quarterback may grumble after practice: "If the coach really knew what he was talking about, then this new offense wouldn't be so confusing. If this is so great, then it should be easy to understand." In both instances, a person grants himself permission to dismiss the new practice and retreat into the comfort of the familiar. That retreat closes the possibility for learning.
This is typical of the unwillingness to be a beginner. The most critical first step in the process of authentic learning is the readiness to be a beginner and to make all three of these critical declarations:
- I commit to learn.
- I authorize a coach to instruct me.
- I am at peace with being a beginner.