A Core Ability of The Extraordinary You
Creativity is intelligence having fun! (Albert Einstein)
Although we’re going to describe what traditional ‘out-the-box-thinking’ is and share a few examples of how it works, our emphasis on Sunday morning will be to discuss six traditional religious ‘in-the-box’ dogmas (unquestioned answers) and then share with you the out-of-the-box (MetaSpiritual) interpretations that show how ‘appawling’ those dogmas are! You’ll discover why ‘dogmas tend to chase their own tales!’
Thinking outside-the-box (also known as thinking out-of-the-box, thinking beyond the box, lateral thinking, or the Eureka effect) is a metaphor that means to think differently, non-traditionally and unconventionally from people who think inside the box.
Creativity is an inborn core quality within each of us. It’s in our DNA. We all have the ability to think outside the box. We are all gifted with a high degree of inquisitiveness and ingenuity. Research says we are all born with an innovative bias. We naturally seek creative solutions to life situations that seem unsolvable and hard to figure out. We have the innate ability to understand incomprehensible problems, human dilemmas, and concepts.
When you were younger, did you ever lie back on the cool grass with a trusted friend on a hot summer day, enjoying the gentle breeze of summer caressing your face? Did you look up at the clouds and daydream? As you both looked up at the clouds, what did you see? Did you see more than clouds? Perhaps you saw a face in the clouds, an animal, or even an entire scene.
If you had this kind of experience, you were using out-of-the-box thinking. Our oldest ancestors looked up at the stars and imagined seeing lions, water bearers, scorpions, and twins. They were using out-of-the-box thinking. The innovators who created amazing breakthroughs such as microwave ovens, search engines, smartphones, and individual serving coffee makers were all using out-of-the-box thinking. In fact, whatever need we seem to have, some out-of-the-box thinker questioned the accuracy and/or relevance of traditional knowledge and solutions.
Self Reflection Question: What examples can you think of
where you have used ‘Out-of-the-Box’ Thinking?
According to Kenneth Heilman, a neurologist at the University of Florida and the author of Creativity and the Brain, thinking outside the proverbial box not only involves coming up with something new, but also with letting go of conventional beliefs and solutions.
In-the-box thinking involves settling for a single, ‘correct’ solution or way of thinking, whereas thinking out-of-the-box involves looking for a totally different answer and even multiple answers to a given problem. We call this creative process ‘questioning unquestioned answers.’
Self Reflection Question: What examples can you think of where you have
‘questioned unquestioned answers’ on your spiritual journey (i.e., a belief about God)?
What impact did this questioning have on you?
One of the great philosophers of all time, Dr. Seuss, described out-of-the-box thinking this way, “Think left, think right, think low, think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try!”
As we thought left and as we thought right, and as we thought low and as we thought high, we realized that religious dogma is a ‘canine concept that’s not a man’s or a woman’s BFF’ and that it will nip at your heels and trip you up if you’re not careful!
Today, make a conscious effort to use your Core Ability of Thinking Outside the Box, as you walk the spiritual path on practical feet!