Target Practice

Have you ever intentionally narrowed in, or focused, on a target, goal, venture, or something that you wanted to accomplish? Before you answer, I know that coaches, teachers, and performance experts often suggest that you try. But have you ever, on purpose, successfully narrowed your focus? I bet you anything, the answer is no.

Now, I’m not saying that you don’t think that you have. I’m sure you’ve experienced rare moments of deep, freeing, and crystal-clear focus. The question, however, is: How does this occur? And what prevents it from occurring more often?

In order to answer, let’s talk about how it appears that you, and all human beings, experience or observe targets or goals, and then I’ll provide my take on how you really do.

In short, it looks like targets or goals exist independent of observation; that you experience them because they’re real, made of matter, or permanent. For example, it looks like the tree (the target) that a golfer is aiming at prior to hitting a tee shot would still exist even if the golfer wasn’t on the tee about to hit a shot. But, believe it or not, it doesn’t actually work that way (outside-in). It works inside-out. The target is actually a projection from within. Without the observer, the golfer in this metaphor, the target wouldn’t exist.

Indeed, I’m well aware that most people will find the above assertion ludicrous. The outside-in theory, or theory of duality, which claims that objects or anything from the physical world exist before and separate from observation has been accepted as true for ages. But, sadly, separating the subject (the observer) from the object (what’s observed) has also confused human beings for ages because it’s just not possible. An object cannot exist without a subject. That’s why you can’t narrow your focus on purpose and why you, like every person I’ve ever worked with, struggle or feel uneasy when trying to do so. Again, the target or goal is nothing more than a momentary projection from within the one who observes. It’s not a separate thing. And you cannot focus ON something that’s not a separate thing.

The bottom line is that trying to focus on a target or goal takes you away from moments of oneness, alertness, beauty, and love. It jams the mind and distances you from the true self. Sure, there will be times when you merely fall into focus. And afterward, when you attempt to describe what happened, it will appear that objects are separate entities that first exist, and then you become aware of them. But no. Focus is strictly an inside-out phenomenon. Human beings simply cannot start outside and reverse engineer how experience works by going back inside.

The inside, or observer, creates the outside, or what’s observed. They’re joined at the hip; they’re ONE. And when it comes to envisioning targets and striving for goals, that’s an essential principle to understand.

Thank you for reading, Garret