Good Question

I believe a good question is just as important, if not more important than a good answer. If we think of the greatest accomplishments in science and technology over the past decades, we often see the solutions—a man on the moon, the theory of relativity, the internet, chocolate cookie dough ice cream—but what we often don’t get to learn about is the equally powerful question that led to the result.
Einstein for example, asked himself the following question as a child that led to his theory of relativity:
“What would the universe look like if I were riding on a beam traveling at the speed of light?”
Without that question, he would have never got to his ultimate answer.
Einstein also said, “If I had an hour to solve a problem and my life depended on the solution, I would spend the first 55 minutes determining the proper question to ask…for once I know the proper question, I could solve the problem in less than 5 minutes.”
Being such an “answer” based culture, it is wise in my opinion, that we perhaps focus less on the answers we are looking for in life, and clarify the questions we are asking in life.
The slightest shift of question can produce some of the most stunning results.
Ask not, “Why am I unhappy?”, but “How can I contribute to the happiness of others?” Ask not, “How can I make more money?” but, “How can I better utilize my talents?” Ask not, “Why doesn’t my partner love me the way I want to be loved?” Ask, “How can I best love my partner, right now?” Ask not, “How can I convince this person?” Ask, “How can I better listen to what this person has to say?”
A shift in question, a waffle of emphasis, the slightest opening in mind or heart can allow a creativity to enter our life that we can embrace with the excitement of embracing an old friend we haven’t seen in a long time.
“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reasoning for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of the mystery every day. Never lose a holy curiosity?” -Albert Einstein

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