Creating Realities

Blissful Innocence: Ignorance Is Bliss

Blissful Innocence: Ignorance Is Bliss
Image by Sarah Richter 

Several years ago I attended a screening of made-for-TV video clips of paranormal and supernatural phenomena. One of the more humorous segments depicted "The Magnetic Family" of the Philippines -- a family that, for some unknown reason, has their bodies magnetized to such a high degree that metal objects hold fast to their skin. The audience gasped and laughed to view paper clips, metal forks, and even a steam iron stuck to the bodies of this family, sherely by magnetic force.

After the presentation the organizer introduced me to the group, and for a joke I called myself "the Magnetic Man of Maui". The audience laughed, and the gathering soon dispersed.

As I was standing on the porch of the house where the screening had been held, a seven-year-old girl came up to me and tugged on my sleeve. I looked down to recognize her as one of several children at the viewing. Then, without a word, the child took a quarter from her hand and pressed it to my bare forearm. At first I thought the girl was trying to give me the quarter, but then, when the quarter fell to the ground, she frowned, looked up, and exclaimed, "I thought you said you were magnetic!"

A moment of laughter soon deepened to a profound realization: An innocent mind is open to all possibilities. Jesus taught "if you want to enter the Kingdom of Heaven, you must become like a little child."

Ignorance Is Bliss

We have heard that "ignorance is bliss," and we usually judge and criticize ignorant people. Yet there is a form of ignorance that serves us well, and that is ignorance of limiting beliefs. A Calvin and Hobbes cartoon declared, "It's not denial. I'm just selective about the reality I accept."

Every reality is available to you -- including ones far more wondrous than the one you now live in -- and you can easily step into a bigger universe if you but drop your beliefs of what you can't do. If you think you know it all, and what you have learned is "the only truth", you cut yourself off from all the truth grander than the one you currently know.

When I wrote The Dragon Doesn't Live Here Anymore in 1981, I was blissfully ignorant about writing and the book industry. I wrote for the sheer delight of expressing myself creatively, and I published the book myself. Within a few months the book became popular, and before long I was reprinting in volumes of 10,000 and traveling around the world to present seminars.

Then one day I walked into a bookstore where my book was being sold, and I was appalled at the huge number of books on similar subject matter -- they took up nearly a whole wall! Suddenly it occurred to me that if I had walked into the store and saw all the excellent and successful work already presented in my field, I probably would never had set pen to paper. But I was ignorant -- and that made all the difference.

Later as I got to know the publishing industry, I learned all the rules; what kinds of books sell, covers that attract attention, agents who can influence publishers, formulas to appeal to various kind of audiences, etc. etc. etc. In retrospect, I sure am glad I didn't know the rules, because most of the rules lead to the disappointing conclusion that only a small percentage of writers will succeed. Some of the other people who did not know the rules were Dale Carnegie, Norman Vincent Peale, and James Redfield. Is there a message here?

Running the Four-Minute Mile

Back in 1951, running a four-minute mile was considered physiologically impossible, Then Roger Bannister ran the mile in 3:58, and within six months forty other contenders beat the unbeatable limit.

A few years ago in Australia, a 61-year-old farmer named Cliff Young entered a grueling 400 kilometer race wearing coveralls and galoshes. As the younger well-trained athletes who competed with him laughed, Cliff went on to win the race in record time -- a full day and a half before competition forty years his junior. How did Cliff do the impossible? Nobody told him he was supposed to sleep.

I'm Possible

The word impossible begins with an imp. Get the imp out of your vision, and you will return to your original innocence. God created the world in perfection, and if we do not see perfection it is only because we are choosing to use a vision that is smaller than God's.

A friend told me, "I used to think I was a perfectionist because everywhere I looked I saw flaws. Now I realize that I was actually an imperfectionist. If I was really a perfectionist, I would see only perfection." Swami Satchidananda teaches, "We started out fine. Then we got de-fined. Now we need to get re-fined."

Perhaps children are the happiest people on the planet because they have not learned what they cannot do. They have not been taught to fear and judge and hate, and they have no concept that they must justify their existence by hard work. Lord, please keep me ignorant, so I may remember my innocence and see the world as You created it.

Book by the author of this article:

Dare to Be Yourself: How to Quit Being an Extra in Other Peoples Movies and Become the Star of Your Own
by Alan Cohen.

Dare To Be Yourself by Alan CohenIn this powerful map to self-discovery, Alan Cohen draws on sources from Buddhism to the Bible, from Gandhi and Einstein to A Course In Miracles, sharing many of his own radiant moments of revelation on the spiritual path. He shows how we can let go of the past, overcome fear, and discover the power of love in our lives. Once we are engaged in the work of truly being ourselves, each challenge becomes an opportunity for growth, each choice a lesson in commitment, each relationship a renewal of God's work. Dare To Be Yourself will dramatically enlighten, empower, and enliven you as you awaken to life and love and the unique gifts that are yours to give the world.

Info/Order this book.

About The Author

Alan Cohen

Alan Cohen is the author of many popular inspirational books, including his forthcoming book Enough Already: The Power of Radical Contentment. Join Alan for his Personal Mentorship Program beginning January 4, 2012. For more information about his books, programs, or free daily inspirational quotes via email, visit, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or phone 1-808-572-0001.


 Get The Latest By Email

Weekly Magazine Daily Inspiration

More Articles By This Author

You May Also Like


internet company logos
Why Google, Facebook and The Internet are Failing Humanity and Little Critters
by Robert Jennings,
What is increasingly obvious is the dark side that is engulfing the internet and is spreading…
Full moon in the night sky
Horoscope Current Week: October 18 - 24, 2021
by Pam Younghans
This weekly astrological journal is based on planetary influences, and offers perspectives and…
girl wearing a Covid mask outside carrying a backpack
Are You Ready to Take Off Your Mask?
by Alan Cohen
Sadly, the Covid pandemic has been a rough ride for lots of people. At some point, the ride will be…
girl wearing a hat deep in thought
Putting A New Spin On Our Thoughts and Experiences
by Jude Bijou
What goes on in the world, just is the way it is. How we interpret other people, things, and…
illustration of a film strip with various scenic pictures on each frame
Designing a New Future for Yourself
by Carl Greer PhD, PsyD
In the physical world, things have a past and a future, a beginning, and an end. For example, I’m…
teacher standing in front of students in an open classroom
Becoming Passionate About Public Education Again
by Robert Jennings,
We are almost all lucky to have someone in our lives to encourage and motivate us and try to show…
people walking and bicycling through a park
Finding Your Way and Flowing with The Mystery of Life
by Marie T. Russell,
Life. It's something we all have in common, no matter our religion, our race, our gender, our…
Flower growing through a chain-link fence
So Many Questions... So Many Answers?
by Marie T. Russell,
We go through life with so many questions. Some are simple. What day is it? What will I have for…
The Power of Meaning: It Determines Our Reality
The Power of Meaning: It Determines Our Reality
by Sarah Mane
The meaning we give to something determines our reality and life experience. If you see a grizzly…
Are You A Perfectionist or An Imperfectionist?
Are You A Perfectionist or An Imperfectionist?
by Alan Cohen
A friend of mine declared, "I used to think I was a perfectionist. I found the tiniest flaws in…
Energy Cannot Be Destroyed; It Can Only Be Transformed
Energy Cannot Be Destroyed; It Can Only Be Transformed
by Alan Seale
Much as we might like to, at the energy level, we can’t get rid of something we don’t like—a…


How Living On The Coast Is Linked To Poor Health
How Living On The Coast Is Linked To Poor Health
by Jackie Cassell, Professor of Primary Care Epidemiology, Honorary Consultant in Public Health, Brighton and Sussex Medical School
The precarious economies of many traditional seaside towns have declined still further since the…
The Most Common Issues for Earth Angels: Love, Fear, and Trust
The Most Common Issues for Earth Angels: Love, Fear, and Trust
by Sonja Grace
As you experience being an earth angel, you will discover that the path of service is riddled with…
How Can I Know What's Best For Me?
How Can I Know What's Best For Me?
by Barbara Berger
One of the biggest things I've discovered working with clients everyday is how extremely difficult…
What Men’s Roles In 1970s Anti-sexism Campaigns Can Teach Us About Consent
What Men’s Roles In 1970s Anti-sexism Campaigns Can Teach Us About Consent
by Lucy Delap, University of Cambridge
The 1970s anti-sexist men’s movement had an infrastructure of magazines, conferences, men’s centres…
Honesty: The Only Hope for New Relationships
Honesty: The Only Hope for New Relationships
by Susan Campbell, Ph.D.
According to most of the singles I have met in my travels, the typical dating situation is fraught…
Chakra Healing Therapy: Dancing toward the Inner Champion
Chakra Healing Therapy: Dancing toward the Inner Champion
by Glen Park
Flamenco dancing is a delight to watch. A good flamenco dancer exudes an exuberant self-confidence…
Giving Up All Hope Could Be Beneficial For You
Giving Up All Hope Could Be Beneficial For You
by Jude Bijou, M.A., M.F.T.
If you're waiting for a change and frustrated it's not happening, maybe it would be beneficial to…
An Astrologer introduces the Nine Dangers of Astrology
An Astrologer introduces the Nine Dangers of Astrology
by Tracy Marks
Astrology is a powerful art, capable of enhancing our lives by enabling us to understand our own…

follow InnerSelf on

facebook icontwitter iconyoutube iconinstagram iconpintrest iconrss icon

 Get The Latest By Email

Weekly Magazine Daily Inspiration



New Attitudes - New Possibilities | | | InnerSelf Market
Copyright ©1985 - 2021 InnerSelf Publications. All Rights Reserved.