Don’t make assumptions

Don’t make assumptions

by don Miguel Ruiz, don Jose Ruiz, and Janet Mills

Are you aware that almost everything you tell yourself is an assumption? Humans have a powerful imagination, very powerful, and there are so many ideas and stories that we can imagine. We listen to the symbols talking in our head. We start imagining what other people are doing, what they’re thinking, what they’re saying about us, and we dream things up in our imagination. We invent a whole story that’s only truth for us, but we believe it.

One assumption leads to another assumption; we jump to conclusions, and we take our story very personally. Then we blame other people, and we usually start gossiping to try to justify our assumptions. Of course, by gossiping, a distorted message becomes even more distorted.

Making assumptions and then taking them personally is the beginning of hell in this world. Almost all of our conflicts are based on this, and it’s easy to understand why.

Assumptions are nothing more than lies that we are telling ourselves. This creates a big drama for nothing, because we don’t really know if something is true or not.

Not taking anything personally gives you immunity in the interaction that you have with other people, and not making assumptions gives you immunity in the interaction that you have with yourself, with your voice of knowledge, or what we call thinking.

Making assumptions is all about thinking. We think too much, and thinking leads to assumptions. Just thinking “What if?” can create a huge drama in our lives. Every human can think a lot, and thinking brings fear. We have no control over all that thinking, all those symbols that we distort in our head. If we just stop thinking, we no longer try to explain anything to ourselves, and this keeps us from making assumptions.

Humans have a need to explain and justify everything; we have a need for knowledge, and we make assumptions to fulfill our need to know. We don’t care whether the knowledge is true or not. Truth or fiction, we believe 100 percent in what we believe, and we go on believing it, because just having knowledge makes us feel safe. There are so many things that the mind cannot explain; we have all these questions that need answers. But instead of asking questions when we don’t know something, we make all sorts of assumptions. If we just ask questions, we won’t have to make assumptions. It’s always better to ask and be clear.

If we don’t make assumptions, we can focus our attention on the truth, not on what we think is the truth. Then we see life the way it is, not the way we want to see it. When we don’t believe our own assumptions, the power of our belief that we invested in them returns to us. And when we recover all the energy that we invested in making assumptions, we can use that energy to create a new dream: our personal heaven. Don’t make assumptions.


Adapted from The Fifth Agreement: A Practical Guide to Self-Mastery. Copyright © 2010 by Miguel Angel Ruiz, M.D., Jose Luis Ruiz, and Janet Mills. Reprinted by Permission of Amber-Allen Publishing, Inc., San Rafael, California.


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