Monday, April 6, 2009

Do We Control our Thoughts?

If you spend any time observing your thoughts you will probably be shocked at how mundane self-centered, and repetitive they are. Almost all of us have a limited range of repeating thought patterns that takes up most of the time of our thought life. I have been told by people who know about this stuff that each of us has seven primary thought patterns. These may include food, sex, money, family, work, health, sports, or some derivation of any of these.

Since we usually don't think about what we think about (think about that fact) we live our lives, for the most part in a partial dreaming state in which we are constantly being barraged by a stream of repetitive thoughts. If you don't care how you spend your time and your thought patterns don't trigger a negative reverberation within your being this is not a problem. Matter of fact it keeps you out of trouble and enables you to get through the day without having to put any effort into thinking.

However, if you become aware of the quality of your thoughts while you are alone, which is most of the time, you may begin to recognize that you have very little control of your thoughts. They are primarily influenced by external stimuli or habit. You have been programmed to think in certain ways and it is very hard to escape from this condition. So your thoughts are controlled by what is going on around you and by your programming or both.

Now this entire conversation might sound like mumbo-jumbo and your reaction might be so what or what is he trying to say. What I am trying to say is a few things. First of all, most of the problems in the world are caused by this easily observable phenomenon that for the most part we don't control our thoughts and that most of our actions and feelings are influenced by this limited range of thoughts that we don't choose. Secondly, except for the very few, we are all equal in this situation. Even though who appear to be more together or more organized or more successful are usually that way because of circumstances rather than conscious choice. Thirdly, there is a possibility to overcome this. We can begin to observe our thoughts and then we can begin to choose what it is we want to think about. If we can learn to be more conscious in our thinking our decisions will be more objective and our lives will improve. This is the one of the main lessons that I have gotten from my spiritual searching. There is the possibilityof thinking on a higher level, one in which we are more free and have access to a greater intelligence. This makes a lot of sense to me. I wonder if I explained it clearly.

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