Experience is the product of the mind, the spirit, conscious thoughts and feelings, and unconscious thoughts and feelings. These together form the reality that we know. We are hardly at the mercy of reality, therefore, that exists apart from ourselves, or is thrust upon us. We are so intimately connected with the physical events composing our life experiences that we often can’t distinguish between seemingly material occurrences and the thoughts, expectations and desires that gave them birth.
If there are strongly negative characteristics present in your most intimate thoughts , if these actually form bars between us and a more full life, still we often look through the bars, not seeing them. Until they are recognized they are impediments. Even obstacles have a reason for being. If they are our own, then it’s up to us to recognize them and discover the circumstances behind their existence.
Our conscious thoughts can be great clues in uncovering such obstructions. We’re not very familiar with our own thoughts as we think. They can escape from us like water through our fingers, carrying with them vital nutrients that spread across the landscape of our psyche—and all too often carrying sludge and mud that clog up the channels of experience and creativity.
An examination of our conscious thoughts will tell us much about the state of our inner mind, our intentions and expectations, and will often lead us to a direct confrontation with challenges and problems. Our thoughts, studied, will let us see where we are going. They point clearly to the nature of physical events. What exists physically exists first in thought and feeling. There is no other rule.
We have the conscious mind for a good reason. We’re not at the mercy of unconscious drives unless we consciously acquiesce to them. Our present feelings and expectations can always be used to check our progress. If we don’t like our experience, then we must change the nature of our conscious thoughts and expectations. We must alter the kind of messages that we are sending through our thoughts to our own bodies, to friends and associates.
Each thought has a result. The same kind of thoughts, habitually repeated, will seem to have more or less permanent effect. If we like the effect then we seldom examine the thought. If we find ourselves assailed by physical difficulties, however, we begin to wonder what is wrong.
Sometimes we blame others, our own background, or a previous life—if we accept reincarnation. We may hold god or the devil responsible, or we may simply say, “That’s life,” and accept the negative experience as a necessary part of our life.
We may finally come to a half-understanding of the nature of reality and whine,” I believe that I have caused these problems, but I find myself unable to change or reverse them”.
If this is the case, then regardless of what we told ourselves thus far, we still don’t believe that we are the creator of our own experience. As soon as we recognize this fact we can begin at once to alter those conditions that cause us dismay or dissatisfaction.
No one forces us to think in a particular way. In the past we may have learned to consider things pessimistically. We may believe that pessimism is more realistic than optimism. We may even suppose, and many do, that sorrow is ennobling, a sign of deep spiritualism, a mark of separation, a necessary mental garb of saints and poets. Nothing could be further from the truth.
All consciousness has within it the deep abiding impetus to use its abilities fully, to expand its capacities, to venture joyfully beyond the seeming barriers of its own experience. The very consciousness within the smallest molecules cries out against any ideas of limitation. They yearn toward new forms and experiences. Even atoms, then, constantly seek to join in new organizations of structure and meaning. They do this “instinctively”.
Man has been endowed, and has endowed himself, with a conscious mind to direct the nature, shape and form of his creations. All deep aspirations and unconscious motivations, all unspoken drives, rise up for the approval or disapproval of the conscious mind, and await its direction.
Only when it abdicates its functions does it allow itself to become swayed by “negative” experience. Only when it refuses responsibility does it finally find itself at the seeming mercy of events over which it appears to have no control.
If you’re in poor health, you can remedy that. If your personal relationships are unsatisfactory, you can change them for the better. If you are in poverty, you can instead find yourself surrounded by abundance. Whether or not we realize it, we have pursued our present course with determination using many resources, for ends or reasons that at one time made sense to us. We might say:” Poor health makes no sense to me”, or “A fractured relationship with my partner is hardly what I was after”, or, “ I certainly have not been pursuing poverty after all my hard work”.
If we were born poor, or born sick, then it certainly seems to us that these circumstances were thrust upon us. Yet they were not, and to some extent or another they can be changed for the better.
This doesn’t mean that effort is not required and determination. It does mean that we are not powerless to change events and that each of us, regardless of our position, status, circumstances or physical condition is in control of our own personal experience.
We see and feel what we expect to see and fell. The world as we know it is a picture of our expectations. The world as a race of man knows it is the materialization en masse of our individual expectations. As children come from our physical tissues, so is the world our joint creation.