For years I have been intending to read ‘Blink’ by Malcolm Gladwell. My housemate lent me a copy. So during Green Gulch’s January Intensive I decided to make that my reading assignment for study. Here is my reduction of the book into four points that are easy to remember:
1. After a lifetime of learning and experiencing we have the ability to sense and then accurately interpret and respond. This interpretation, which he calls judgment (in zen we call it wisdom) often happens within a spilt second or within a few seconds.
2. This gift of judgment is fragile and easily disrupted. It can be disrupted by stress (heart rate over 145) or more basic programming and conditioning (racial bias, being in awe of someone else, gender bias, etc.)
3. understanding the fragility requires us to be forgiving of those trapped in circumstances where good judgment is impaired.
4. too much information, knowing too much about a situation actually impairs judgment and the ability to act spontaneously.