I bet you never had that thought.
I bet you never thought that you had control over your thoughts – the amount of them, the rapidity of them, or the quality of them. Most people feel that they are their thoughts; they derive their very identity in life by whatever crosses their mind on a daily basis and remains in their thoughts year by year as the structure of their self. In fact, it requires a leap of understanding to realize that you are not your thoughts but rather something greater and apart from them.
The leap is what’s gained by meditation. The leap is into a gradual (or sometimes sudden) insight that the essential you is apart from your thoughts and is eternal. But that’s getting beyond what I’m talking about now.
Before you can make that leap you must come to the discovery that the essential you has control over the amount, quality and speed of your mind’s engine. Let’s say something has made you angry and your thoughts are churning about it. Grrr. This one’s to blame, and that should have been said. What if you handled it differently? What will you do next time? How dare that person act that way! You feel helpless against this barrage of messages, don’t you?
Suppose you’re not angry but depressed?
Gloomy thoughts abound. Despair. It’ll never go right. You’ve failed. Others dislike you; you never find love. You feel worthless, guilty, thwarted, etc. How do you know this if not via your thought-constructs?! Is it even true?
Here’s another typical routine: distraction. I’ll let my mind wander so I don’t have to deal with the important but challenging stuff. I’ll daydream. I’ll procrastinate. Maybe I’ll watch the boob-tube to while away the hours. Mental paralysis is not the same as inner stillness!
There’s a term for these unproductive mental states, and that’s called Monkey Mind. Never still, jumping all over the place, using but wasting your energy. Why let your own mind lead you down roads you’d rather avoid? Did you know that you can control your thoughts just as you’d control any other machine?
You can switch from one thought to another, better one in the blink of an eye.
You can thereby control your emotions. This is called self-mastery. You can see certain types of thoughts as trivial or passing. You can calm the body’s whole energy system in this way.
Some thoughts are profound. These can be given more attention, more leeway; they bring light and empowerment. But even these can be put to rest whenever you choose to. I’m talking about taming your mind, directing it along chosen lines, deciding which type of emotion you wish to reside in, and ever-so-often putting it to rest as you just breathe… breathe… go inwards, let go, discover your higher self in there, and find peace.
Judi Thomases is a contributing blogger for JenningsWire online magazine.
JenningsWire.com is created by National Publicity Firm, Annie Jennings PR that specializes in providing book marketing strategies to self-published and traditionally published authors. Annie Jennings PR books authors, speakers and experts on major top city radio talk shows that broadcast to the heart of the market, on local, regionally syndicated and national TV shows and on influential online media and in prestigious print magazines and newspapers.