Month: October 2016


Power and Primordial Confidence

One important element of basic goodness is power, of a specific type: the innate power of awareness. Before we try to define this power directly, let’s take as an example the above photo of the gaze of a tiger. Why is a tiger’s gaze so powerful? If you’re like me, the easiest answers—”because it could kill you,” “because we’ve evolved to fear large predators,” “because tigers just look cool”—don’t actually hold up. I don’t find the tiger above to be frightful, or merely cool. I find it to be majestic. For me, a synonym for this majesty would be “innate power.” The tiger radiates a presence that, in and of itself, I can’t help but feel is powerful. What is the source of this power? The power of awareness For me, the tiger is radiating a powerful awareness, especially through its eyes: This creature is powerfully alive, and it is looking back at the camera with a force of awareness that is not hostile or aggressive, but is utterly without doubt. For me, much more than its muscles and claws, the tiger feels powerful because …