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

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Book Review!

“Thoughts That Go Bump in the Night” is about thinking and how thoughts create daily experience. About once a month I post a new piece on the power of thinking in personal, social, and political realms. I’ve not done reviews of books or other media although I ‘ve referenced some, such as “The Secret.” Now, I gotta do it!

The Astonishing Power of Emotions by Esther and Jerry Hicks (Hay House, 2007). This is the fourth major book by this dynamic team presenting the teachings of Abraham. Not the Biblical Patriarch, but an ethereal group of teachers working with the Hicks to present to a broad audience cutting edge thought.

The impressive aspect of this book, as with the others, is the dogged focus of the teachings – an understanding and application of the Law of Attraction (the essence of that which is like unto itself, is drawn.) All guidance, counsel, instruction, etc., revolves around that aspect of the Universe – whatever you give attention to, you attract and increase. That can feel good, or it can feel bad. Obviously the feeling means something.

The premise of the book is that emotions are your guide towards a better feeling life experience at any moment. Of course you need to understand how they (Abraham via Esther) consider the relationship between emotions and you. In a nut-shell, your conscious self is a portion of a much greater you, a greater consciousness not restricted by this three dimension experience. That view of yourself is heady stuff for many people and a starting point for understanding emotions.

According to Abraham emotions range from despair to joy and indicate the degree of alignment with your current thinking/attention/vibrational self and your greater self (also called inner being.) That alignment is determined by the vibrational match (or mis-match) of what you are giving your attention to now and what vibrations you have created (rockets of desire, they’re called) in vibrational escrow. The Law of Attraction insures that like thoughts (attention) attract and produce more of the same – even the unwanted. In any situation you feel either a measure of good or a measure of bad. The better the feeling, the closer you are to your true desires and self and those desires in vibrational escrow. The worse you feel, the further you are separated from your true desire and self.

Everything Esther and Jerry do – and they are very busy – is practical. This isn’t about something later, in some hereafter or such, but techniques for using universal laws to provide immediate relief and, as described, to move up the emotional scale and enjoy life.

The book presents 33 Examples, each a type of problem or situation familiar to most folks. For instance, Example 17 “My Children Have No Respect for Me.” In this chapter a single mom is raising three teenaged daughters who no longer respect her, noting that “It’s like they’ve joined forces against me. I don’t know how it happened or when it happened, but it’s very uncomfortable. When did I lose control?”

In the course of this brief chapter, as in the others, Abraham summarizes the situation presented then offers a view from broader perspective (another reference to inner-being or higher self.) There’s a review of the current “upstream” thoughts that are attracting more of the uncomfortable feelings. In Abraham-Hicks parlance “upstream” is fighting against the guidance from within, paddling against the current with all the attending work and suffering. “Downstream” thoughts are more aligned vibrationaly with guidance/source energy, and feel better (ah, the value of the emotions!) thus attracting and creating better feeling circumstances.

In this example some current “upstream” thoughts are:
· I can’t control my child
· I need to find a way to control my child
· If I don’t control my child I will be seen as a bad parent…

What’s going on? “You think that the pain you are feeling is because of your children’s disrespect for you, but all emotional pain is really about your disagreement with your own Inner Being. In other words, your in-this-moment thoughts do not match the thoughts your Inner Being has about the subject,” according to Abraham.

Being impossible to change other people (especially one’s children!) all that can be changed is the perspective. This can be accomplished in tiny bits – a bit of relief, then another, then another, and so it builds. In this example some slightly better thoughts are offered:
· I hate it when my girls roll their eyes at me that way
· It’s not personal – they don’t respect any adults

Eventually it’s possible use the emotional indicators to think more downstream about the situation:
· There aren’t enough hours in the day to sort through the complicated details of my teenager’s lives
· I think I’ve been spending too much time trying to do that
· There are other things I could think about

And it’s possible to have more comfortable downstream thoughts:
· They won’t know what to do if I’m not haranguing them all the time
· My backing off cannot possibly cause a more negative result since what I have been doing certainly hasn’t produced any positive results
· This will be fun

This book, as well as the others, helps people grasp the reality that your well being is not dependent upon what other people do or don’t do. If mom can’t feel better until the girls get their act together…then mom’s not going to feel good for a long, long, time. It’s not about THEM, it’s about YOU. You have the power to change your thinking and perception, not theirs. And in fact, that’s all you can do. When you feel good, things naturally work well for you. When you feel bad, it seems to all hit the fan. The worse it gets, the worse it gets. But also the better it gets, the better it gets. The universal laws are in play. You decide. Your emotions can help you if you understand them.
After reading each of their previous books "Ask and it is Given," "The Amazing Power of Deliberate Intention," and "The Law of Attraction" I wondered how they could top it? How delightful...

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