What is Unlearning LO10159

Jim Michmerhuizen (jamzen@world.std.com)
Tue, 24 Sep 1996 22:25:46 -0400 (EDT)

Replying to LO10145 --

On Tue, 24 Sep 1996, Kerr, Donald wrote:

> How does the process of learning differ from metanoic transformation?

[ for example... ]
> The reason I ask is I had a mystical peak experience with God in the
> form of a dream that was a revelation that deeply changed my perspective
> the moment I woke up. (I "unlearned" and old, deeply ingrained view very
> rapidly and a new one was "revealed"). I experienced a "similar"
> experience while sitting at Dr. Deming's 4-day seminar. I continue to
> have "similar" peak moments in smaller continual changes, like when I
> read the Fifth Discipline, a profound post on the LO, the Bible in a new
> light, etc.
> What is going on here? Are these all learning experiences in my mind
> with varying degrees of emotions?

It seems to me there are pretty good reasons for maintaining some
distinction, in our language, between moments of great and perhaps
mystical insight, and simple "learning".

For one thing, there is always a great deal we need to learn *from* the
experience: applying it, more or less successfully or doggedly. Would you
say that St. Paul learned his Christianity in the moment light struck him
on the road to Damascus? Or rather in the subsequent years of his
missionary work?

Secondly, it seems possible that moments of insight may possibly *not*
invariably represent learning. Suppose I forget, or never put into
practice, my vision -- have I learned anything?

Overall, I'd surmise too that referring to something as a "learning"
process carries some irreducible notion of a skill being practiced. I can
learn to meditate -- but is the meditation itself a learning?

     Jim Michmerhuizen    jamzen@world.std.com
     web residence at     http://world.std.com/~jamzen/
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