In the last post, I showed how I figured out how I took control of my emotions and learned how to consciously choose them. But this wasn’t the end of my process. The next part was to take control of my thoughts.
I use the following metaphor: visualize the outboard motor of a ship. To go in reverse (radically change your thoughts), the motor has to stop—at least for a moment.
I call this process “Ending the Story.” The ancients of nearly every philosophy knew that we describe the world to ourselves and then live in it. The ancient Toltecs called this mental hologram, “The Smoky Mirror,” meaning that we project our thoughts out to our auras, which reflect our thoughts back to us as “reality.”
As I state in Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity: We are magicians who have forgot that we create our own illusions. To regain control of our creative powers, we have to:
- Realize we have creative power.
- Realize that our thoughts and emotions create our reality.
- Take responsibility —not blame— for our thoughts and emotions that support our creations (unconscious or conscious).
- Monitor every thought and emotions that arise.
- Choose the ones we want.
- Maintain vigilance against unconscious habits.
The power of our illusions is so strong that we all think that we have to change the “outside” in order to change the “inside.” An example of this kind of misguided thinking is our habitual conditional thinking: “I’ll be happy when I get that job, find a spouse, get my own home…etc.” This kind of thinking practically guarantees that we can never be happy; not only are we putting our happiness in the future, but we are subjecting it to conditions that by our own definition do not currently —and may never—exist. All of this is how we disempower ourselves with every unconscious thought.
Our thoughts begin to create a story when we continue to “gather evidence” to support a storyline. Whenever you practice the same (disempowering, unconscious) thought, it forms a path in your brain. Like any footpath in the wilderness, more traffic along the same path of thought creates a deeper grove in the matrix of the brain. For instance, you might have the (unconscious) belief that you cannot find a job. Since you are unconscious about this belief, it is sabotaging your efforts to find a job, even sabotaging any affirmations that you may be practicing, because the underlying negative belief is fueled by unconscious emotions.
The process is not to replace a “negative” belief with a more “positive” one, but to realize that you are in control of all your beliefs. Better yet: dismantle all your beliefs so you can create anew. This involves learning how to dismantle the “story of your life” by unraveling the thoughts and emotions behind that reality.
I wanted to create a radically different reality, one that was freed of all unconscious emotions and beliefs (thoughts). That meant that I had to next choose all my thoughts, and, for me, that meant first emptying myself of all thoughts.
Before you tell me that that is impossible, reflect that regaining control of your thoughts is the goal of all esoteric philosophies. All the adepts aspire to empty themselves of thoughts, beliefs and emotions.
“But, practically, how can you divest yourself of all thoughts,” you might ask. How do you do this throughout the day. Most Buddhists sit in meditation for hours in order to do that, but I was aspiring to do this throughout the day.
I used a trick.
Every time my thoughts started to go down unconscious paths of habit I would bring myself gently back to a visualization of a Lemniscate, a symbol used as an expression of infinity. A lemniscate has only one side: you can easily make one by taking a strip of paper, twisting it, and gluing the opposite ends together.
Whenever I had an unconscious thought that I no longer wanted, I would trace the single-sided lemniscate in my mind. This simple exercise allows the practitioner to connect the two sides of their brain. A connected brain has access to all right-brain skills, such as intuition, creative inspiration, and yes, even creative genius.
I practiced this until my thoughts slowed down and finally stopped. I found the following idea really helpful:
Think of reality like an old-style strip of film. The illusion of movement (and reality) is created by a phenomomen called “persistance of vision.” As the strip of still images moves through the projector the images blend into a convincing “reality”—the real secret to the illusion is that we perceive with our brain rather than with our vision.
As I went back to the lemniscate again and again, my thoughts slowed down—the projector of the illusion slowly slowed— until I could see each frame of the illusion (each thought supporting the believed reality) revealed as a simple image.
At this point I realized that I was emptying my mind in preparation for something. After all, I don’t want to be in the void forever, but I also don’t want to simply fill myself with more unconscious thoughts, emotions, and beliefs.
Why do I call this place “the void?” At this moment it feels very empty and bland. I cannot get excited about anything—even creative projects. I have created a vacum —since, as they say, “Nature abhors a vacum,” I am looking forward to using this void to flow into me all the things that I want.
Before I created the void, I had a lot of mental static and obstructing emotions. There wasn’t the space or power to allow anything new to enter. I don’t want old “solutions” or tired, old ideas, but until I am clear of all the old stuff, I can’t allow myself to put more in.
The void is necessary at this time. I am beginning to use my heart to guide me towards ever better feeling concepts and solutions. To me, the world is a feeling, not a thing: I can change my world by changing the things in myself that generate that underlying feeling: my thoughts and emotions.
So, the question remains: what happens after the void? What will I create? I have no idea, but I will say that I think it will be fantastic.
— Copyright 2012 Aliyah Marr
All rights reserved.