The Research Requirement

Research. We seem to crave it. We seem to require it for validation. In fact, absent of research, we’re taught to turn away from even the most intriguing ideas, concepts, or models. But here’s the thing regarding research we tend to overlook: Research merely tells us how something seems to work. It does not tell us how something actually works.

To illustrate, research indicating that the act of meditation leads to the state of meditation 85 percent of the time does not prove the efficiency of the act of meditation. It proves the inefficiency of it. Why? Because if the act caused the state, it would happen 100 percent of the time. So, while it seems as if research shows that most of the time the act of meditation causes the state of meditation, it actually shows that it never causes it.

More important, any time you try to prove cause and effect—the aim of research—what you’re essentially doing is corroborating the greatest of cultural misunderstandings: separation, duality, inequality, or the presumption that we are not a single Being. That is, in order for one thing to cause another, there must be separation; there must be two. So, with the best of intentions, many are trying to use research (prove cause and effect) to fix the dreads of humanity (e.g., to end climate change, to cure mental illness, to eliminate conflict). But they’re basically doing the opposite. They’re fortifying the illusion of separation—which is the foundation of the dreads they’re attempting to fix.

To be clear, I’m not saying that research is wrong; it has some proper applications. In sport or in certain aspects of medicine, for instance. But bottom line? It cannot prove what’s real or what’s true. In fact, our culture has been research-driven for as long as anyone can remember. Are we at peace? In love? Free? Why, then, keep looking in a faulty direction?

Research requires a look outside. The word is even derived from the Middle French “recherche,” which means “to go about seeking.” It’s an exploration into the illusory and bottomless world of mind and matter.

Rather, look inside. Explore what cannot be seen. What does not seem real. What cannot be proven. What requires no seeking.

Explore the nature of Consciousness, the true Self, or the one Being we share.

Answers—Peace, Love, and Freedom—found nowhere but there.

Inward and up,