A Game of Twenty-one Questions


"I was just wondering as I was walking along thinking to myself."—Winnie The Pooh to Piglet

"You need to start asking better questions."—Socrates to Dan Millman (Peaceful Warrior)

Every day, I ask myself questions.

It’s not so much how I answer them that really matters. What matters is that I bother to ask in the first place. Questions challenge the way I’m thinking and feeling in the moment. Ultimately, they challenge the way I'm choosing to live. Provided below is a list of 21 questions I started asking myself a long time ago. In my "practice," I pick one and think upon it for a day or two, maybe even a week or more. The intention is not to see how many questions I can get through in one sitting or even in one month. The point is to challenge myself, through my questioning, to awaken to life just a little bit more in each moment.

Consider adopting such a practice into your own life. In time, you may find that questioning yourself in such a manner has contributed significantly to your enjoyment of life simply because it challenged and, subsequently, enabled you to stay more present in your day-to-day, moment-by-moment activities. Life is about "doing" and about "becoming" (or "rediscovering") oneself in the doing. Happiness in life can be experienced only right here and right now—and nowhere else. Question yourself, and let it bring you back to the here and now of your current experience. Again, it's not so much your answer to any particular question at any one point that's the most illuminating. Paradoxically, it's the asking, rather than answering, that seems to flip on the light switch.

God's peace, and happy queries...

Twenty-one Questions I Ask Myself (...but not all at once!)

  1. Where are you, Dave? (Here?) What time is it? (Now?) What are you? (This moment?)

  2. What do you want?

  3. Why are you doing what you’re doing right now?

  4. What are your assumptions?

  5. Are you being kind to yourself? To others?

  6. Did you see the sunrise today? Did you watch the sunset last night?

  7. Are you communicating completely and clearly, or are you withholding important information? (If it's the latter, what's the pay-off to you?)

  8. When you wash the dishes, can you just wash the dishes?

  9. Are you running or staying?

  10. What scares you?

  11. Are you responding to the event at hand or just to an old memory?

  12. What are you clinging to that you need to let go of?

  13. Are you willing to die to set others free?

  14. What does being genuine look and feel like?

  15. What would you do or how would you be if the opinions of others no longer mattered?

  16. What would things be like if you stopped managing and regulating everything and everybody, including yourself?

  17. What would your life be like if you opened yourself up and just gave yourself away to God? And what, too, would happen if you let God do the same with you?

  18. From where are you deriving your sense of strength and power?

  19. How do you want to feel tomorrow, next week, next year, five years from now, ten years from now, a hundred years from now, a thousand years from now, a million years from now, a billion years from now, a trillion years from now?

  20. What makes you come alive?

  21. How tied is your happiness to your circumstances?

 

IKIGAI Weekly Blog Schedule (per The Training Trinity):

Mondays: Meditative Prayer

Wednesdays: Holistic Discipline

Fridays: Martial Arts Practice

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The Life You Were Born to Live