Cogito ergo sum? I think, therefore I am? Either way, what and how we think is often said to important. Even if thinking does not determine our actual existence, it very well may create our individual and shared “reality” – or at least our perception(s) of it.
This thought, belief, idea, insight, concept, power, or whatever (else) you may wish to call it, has been expressed many times, by many people, in many ways. It has been called (and is today probably best known as both) “The (Strangest) Secret” and the “Law of Attraction”.
We tend to get (and become) what we think about (most). As a man, woman, or child thinks and believes (especially in their “heart” and unconscious mind), so shall each be – reaping what they sow (in their mind).
The word “Amen” comes from the root “to believe”. Like “aho”, it expresses acknowledgment, affirmation, and (often) agreement – in the form of “as you wish” or “so be it!”
“Abra-ca-dabra” actually means “I create as I speak”. We not only talk but also tend to think in words – and our tongue makes (corresponding) micro-movements as we do. To help still the “mind” (in meditation, martial arts, or any other practice where a calm, clear “consciousness” is desired), it’s often helpful to first still the tongue by pressing its tip against the “roof” (or upper palate) of the mouth.
There are very few things we can control in life. What we put into and allow to come out of our mouths are two choices for which we alone are responsible and accountable. Once spoken (or posted on the internet), words cannot be retrieved, taken back, “eaten”, erased, or forgotten. They exist (somewhere – “forever”). Words not only represent ideas and emotions, but are thought to actually have their own energy and maybe even “mass” – “created” as we think and speak them. We may not be aware of most of what we “think”, but what is (or is not) said out loud (to ourselves or others) is, in terms of its “power”, no different from putting it in writing and signing our name to it. We can still evolve, revise, amend, change, transform, or transcend what we have created and/or create something new (including our habits), but it would be “foolish” to think that the thoughts and words of our past don’t matter or simply dissipate and disappear and have no effect on us or anyone else (whether we are aware of it or not).
What anyone else thinks of us is really none of our business. What we think about and say (or don’t) to ourselves and others is – especially if we believe it. Much of what we think about others (good, bad, or neutral) is actually projection (often of something we recognize in them about ourselves). Much of what we think about (and say to) ourselves is the result of accepting and believing other people’s projections onto us. Either way, the only way anyone else knows what’s going on in our mind is if we let them know (consciously or unconsciously – on purpose or by accident). Sometimes more important than NOT blurting out everything that comes to mind is expressing and sharing the positive, supportive, appreciative things we think and feel that others only know if we TELL them. Most of what people hear, believe, and repeat to themselves, from early childhood on, is not very “empowering”. Kind words are seldom forgotten – especially when obviously sincerely expressed. It does not take much to “make someone’s day”. More importantly, no one else can say what YOU have to say – the way YOU say it.
Ignorance is simply not knowing. Stupidity is not (being open to) learning. Making a mistake is creating an unintended (and usually undesired) result. Lying is purposely misleading. What they all have in common is that what is said or done is usually believed – by someone. A belief is attachment and identification with an idea. The most “sacred” and powerfully creative (and defining) words (in any language) are “I am” (followed by “we are”, “you are”, “s/he is”, “they are”, etc.). Be very careful with whatever follows.
When listening to others, it is usually best to let them know you “believe” whatever they say – especially if they do (at least until asked if that is what they really “mean” and they start paying more attention to what actually comes out of their mouths). People frequently use words they can’t define (or that are emotionally-loaded) rather than choose to stop and think about what it is they really want to communicate. This forces the listener to “interpret” and “mind-read” even more than they otherwise might.
Requesting clarification and/or confirmation of what was heard, said, or meant – in an attempt to “accept”, “understand”, and “appreciate” their perspective (as best you can) without challenging, contradicting, or otherwise questioning tends to “assist” and “allow” most people to be much more receptive and attentive to whatever YOU may have to say as well as to what (and how) they may desire or choose to reply or share (next). The quality and focus of our “thinking” and “communication” is in many ways what determines the nature and extent of our “reality”, relationships, experience, and impact in life.
That’s what I’ve been thinking about. What about you?
© 2010 – 2011, Oren Pardes. All rights reserved.