Thoughts on Thinking

"When somebody persuades me that I am wrong, I change my mind. What do you do?" John Maynard Keynes

"If you're unhappy with your life, change your thinking." Charles Fillmore

"The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it." Eckhart Tolle

"People are not disturbed by things, but by the view they take of them." Epictetus

"The unexamined life is not worth living." Socrates

"Consciousness is a terrible thing to waste." PunditGeorge

Saturday, March 27, 2021

Perspective!

 In what seem to be very trying times, a bit of perspective may help.

 “Let one who seeks not stop seeking until one finds.  When one finds, one will be disturbed, when one is disturbed, one will be amazed and will reign over all.” 

 As they say, that’s a whale of a statement.  It’s fraught with perspective.  The first sentence instructs one to persevere until goal achieved.  The next sentence informs that the achieved goal, the find, will be disturbing.  Disturbed, in this sense, means to alter the position or arrangement of beliefs.  The rearrangement will be amazing, and will result in greater authority.

 In a sense, this is a two sentence explanation of spiritual evolution.  The greater the perspective, the greater the wisdom.  The greater the wisdom, the more satisfying the life.  The key point, in my opinion, is for one to understand that increased knowledge/perspective will reorder/alter previous beliefs/perspective.  In effect, you can’t have a greater perspective with old beliefs.

 I first encountered the intriguing statement years ago when reading Elaine Pagels “Beyond Belief” the secret gospel of Thomas (page 53.) According to Wikipedia:  The Gospel of Thomas (also known as the Coptic Gospel of Thomas) is a non-canonical gospel.  It was discovered near Nah Hammadi,  Egypt, in December 1945 among a group of books known as the Nag Hammadi library.  The Gospel of Thomas differs from the canonical books in that it is a record of 114 sayings attributed to Jesus.  Less a narrative of the great teacher’s life, it purports to be a collection of what he said to his disciples.

 More on the Nag Hammadi Library and The Gospel of Thomas here.

Saturday, January 30, 2021

In These Troubled Times...

 ...as they say, SMILE!  Even if others can't see it, smile!  From A Gnome, A Candle, And Me:

Smile

 I made it a point

To smile one day

despite what’s all around.

Grousing vanished,

moaning faded,

and complaining walked away.

 

No matter what,

I could see beyond

to glimpse the inner core

and that was a smile indeed.

 

After a while

those happy in their grief

stood further away,

and I had a marvelous day.

 

Guess who was grinning?





Wednesday, December 30, 2020

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2021 !

Do you mean it?  A happy 2021? (After what I went through in 2020?)  It’s not a wish, it's not magic.   It’s a matter of intent.  Your intent.

One simple declaration will make all the difference.  Attach the declaration to the beginning of every thought and you’ll be astonished.  Okay, ready? 

“It is fun to ________________________________.”    😊

Simple.  Uncomplicated.  Heck, it’ll even make pleasant those traditional dreaded New Year’s Resolutions: 

“It is fun to plan to lose weight.”  It’s not necessary to “wait” until the weight is lost to have fun.

“It is fun to choose what I eat.”  If a healthier diet is in the plan, then have fun with it now.

“It is fun to de-clutter the office.”  Think about how much better it is without the mess rather than fixating on the mess.

“It is fun to have the car serviced.”  It’s fun to be able to drive where I want to go.”

“It is fun to pay more attention to_____.”  Fill in the blank.

“It is fun to be around healthy, happy people.”  Duh.

“It is fun to pay the bills.”  Well, for each bill you received some service or item.  Enjoy that! 

You get the idea.  The more you do it, the easier it becomes.  In fact, if you really intend to have a fun 2021, and you begin using this declaration January 1, by the beginning of March you’ll think this way automatically.  You won’t pay much attention to that fact because you’ll be having so a good time.  You will literally think your way out of the doom and gloom that was called 2020. 

Of course, if you don’t really believe that you could/should/ought to have a continuous good time, then you won’t.  It’s the intention that rules, a.k.a. expectation.   If you look for the fun in anything, you’ll find it.  If you look for something else, you’ll find that.  What is consistent is that you will find and experience what you expect, what you look for, what you give your attention to.  Thoughts mean things.  Thoughts become things.  A thing un-thought never came to pass. 

If you truly want a fun 2021, use the magic word as well.  Go whole-hog – complaint free!

How much delight can you have in 2021?  All you want.

Those who get it, get it.  Those who don’t, can’t. 

Happy New Year!  (If you want it.)  

 

Wednesday, December 09, 2020

2020 be damned! Merry Christmas!

(Re-posting from previous years) 

The Winter Solstice continues to be one of the most enduring moments for reverence and celebration.  The darkest day of the year has come and hence forth each day shall be filled with more sunshine.  I'm not aware of any civilization that did not make a big deal of the turning point of the year.

So, of course, this became the season to celebrate the birth of Jesus who became the Christ.  It's likely that Jesus was born not in winter, but in the spring and six years earlier than our calendar suggests.  Since Pisces, the fish, was an early Christian symbol, I'd surmise that the birth occurred under that astrological sign.  This is all irrelevant, of course.  The historical Jesus Christ was one of a handful of master teachers known to us, and his instructions on how to live a more wonderful life have proven themselves repeatedly.

Mischief arose when the teachings of this Master were edited, blended, codified, and otherwise rendered theological and political.  All the latter are man-made.  Some of the recent history of organized Christianity is not pretty - the Albigensian Crusade, Spanish Inquisition, and burning witches come to mind, and of course the modern scourge of ISIS.   But this is man acting against man and not reflective of Jesus' teachings, principle of which is to do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

It is fashionable now to minimize the impact of Jesus or even seriously question his existence.  I distinctly recall through the years the "absence of evidence" of an historical Jesus.  Why, if the teachings and movement were so profound, many ask, does the principle source for historical information in the region shortly after the death of Jesus, mention him in only a brief paragraph? 

The source is Josephus, who wrote a voluminous history of the Jews called "Antiquities."  Recently I purchased the complete works of Josephus, because I like history, and because I was curious to read the rare, fleeting, mention of Jesus in the decades following his death.  It is a brief paragraph.  But what a paragraph! 

3. (63)  Now, there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works - a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure.  He drew over to him both many of the Jews, and many of the Gentiles.  He was {the} Christ; (64) and when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principle men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him, for he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and then thousand other wonderful things concerning him; and the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct to this day.

That's an account given when many who knew Jesus were still alive.  He must have made quite an impact to earn that paragraph so quickly.  Note:  It is possible that various translations of the paragraph may have embellished the telling.

The history is irrelevant.  It is the teachings that shifted much of human consciousness and continues to do so.  Jesus taught that thinking (prayer) was the road to a wonderful life.  Thinking is very personal, therefore the relationship to God that Jesus taught, had to be personal as well.  That, of course, didn't go over well with Priests or any positioned person to whom obedience and, well, worship were required.  Radical stuff, actually.

So, to celebrate the Christ Mass, is a good thing.  It is a Merry Christmas.  It is a Happy Holiday.  It is as pagan as it gets, for the celebration is ancient.  Adjacent to Christmas, in our modern calendar, is the New Year!  Really, rejoice that the great Teacher came to teach us joy, then embark on a fresh, new year that uncluttered with the mistakes (and erroneous thinking) of the previous year.

Why, there's even a host of robust celebratory music to accompany the season.  Joy to the World!  Happy New Year!



 

Monday, November 23, 2020

Believing is Seeing

 

This is more like the 21st Century...


As always, children take to such things much easier.  Perhaps the time has come to seriously consider a new way of education.  Truly, a thought that goes bump in the night...

More information about Caroline Cory's film here.