In blog 80: Becoming Deep, we saw where all we are lacking and hence where all we need to go deep. In this blog, let’s try to understand depth at its core, even more clearly.
Because there is some confusion among many, and it persists at various levels. Some people think they are deep because they listen to inspirational YouTube videos or podcasts. Yes, you are definitely deeper than many people who are not doing that, but you are not deep (nowhere nearly deep) as the person who’s reading loads of non-fiction books every year or someone who is doing Vedhaadhyayana.
So, have you ever wondered what is it that leads to depth? When do we see, acknowledge or say something is “deep”? I asked the same question. And then, there it was, the only core in all that we call deep, or that has depth. It might be deep conversations, deep experiences, deep thinking, or deep personalities, but the core remains the same.
Depth is only through awareness.
There can be depth only through awareness. There might be other triggering aspects, like experience for example, through experience, one might get awareness. And it is that awareness we call “depth”.
And thinking about it a little longer, a mental model appeared, that integrates the depth, awareness, and work we do. This mental model uses plant roots to understand Depth.
First, let’s see what is depth vs shallow through this model.
Tap Roots vs fibrous roots. We’ve all learned this in our schools. It’s just that we are trying to learn something else through it.
Fibrous root depicts a dabbler, he’s trying a lot of things, learning things but none of them are integrating into solid active wisdom, i.e awareness. A tap root however depicts a polymath. He too does various kinds of works, but all of it originates from his solid active wisdom, i.e awareness. And whatever he learns through those works also integrates back to the primary root.
We can learn more through this if we observe keenly.
Primary root – Awareness
Branches – Work ( not a job )
Thickness – Dimensions/Multi-facets
Through this model, we can see how our work is derivative of our awareness. We can also see how work can lead to awareness. That is, when one of the branches grows in the same direction, parallelly and closely to the primary root, then eventually, that branch will become part of the primary root. That is possible only in a tap root and not possible in a fibrous root. Of course, this is just a mental model to understand the concept of depth relative to awareness, work, and multi-faceted-ness. So don’t get into the nuances or fight over tap root and fibrous root or which plant grows better.
And the thickness signifies the broadness of one’s awareness. Let’s say a root is very thick and deep, then the person’s awareness it represents is deeply aware of not only a small group of niches, but it depicts that the person is aware of a broad spectrum of topics.
This model can also be used to understand the difference between a generalist and a specialist. As I mention in my Infographics Yearbook 2022, this model can be used to understand who is a generalized specialist and who is a specialized generalist too.
I don’t know if I was able to convey and make you understand the concept.
But basically, it is the awareness that brings depth into your life! Your work can indeed be a means to that awareness. You can choose awareness, even while having multiple domains of interest you’re pursuing. All you’ve got to do is, Be a Bug and go deep!
Sanath Kumar Naibhi