What a man thinks, he becomes; what a man thinks is the mainspring of all his actions; what a man thinks attracts to him his circumstances and environment; what a man thinks determines what type of friends and companions will gather around him; what a man thinks decides whether he shall be happy or miserable, successful or unsuccessful, healthy or unhealthy, prosperous or poverty-stricken, hated or loved. What a man thinks either builds up his character or pulls it down.
What a man thinks can overcome fate or strengthen it, can bring him into alignment with his glorious destiny, or make him an outcast and a wanderer in desert places. Indeed, there is no limit to the power of thought, because it is a spiritual power of intense potency. It is the power which distinguishes man from the brute.
By thought man either blesses or curses himself. By it he brings into his life either.
It is all in his mind and the character of his thought. Whatever there is in your life or mine, of disharmony, lack, sickness or unhappiness, is the result of our disharmonious thought. We live in an orderly Universe, but we do not react harmoniously to our environment, we are not in correspondence with the hidden law and order around us. It is not necessary for the universe to be altered; what is needed is that we ourselves should be changed.
Within ourselves is the cause of the disorder in our own individual world—for we each live in a little world of our own creation— therefore, the disorder and trouble that afflicts us, or the lack that restricts our life, can never be overcome, save by a change of mind, habit of thought, and mental attitude.
THERE is the conscious mind and there is the subconscious mind. The conscious mind gathers knowledge and experience through the senses. It learns from books, conversation and experience. It reasons and forms conclusions. Finally its thoughts pass down into the subconscious mind. The subconscious mind is the
mind of action. It is responsible for all that we do. It is the seat of memory and of instinct. It is a reservoir of tremendous power, it is of extraordinary intelligence, it carries out all the complicated processes within the body, which make life possible.
Therefore upon our thoughts depends what sort of actions are brought forth. If evil thoughts are sent down into the subconscious mind, then evil, destructive action will be the natural result. If thoughts of weakness and failure are entertained, then weak actions leading to failure will inevitably follow. On the other hand, if good thoughts are entertained, then constructive good action will result, and if strong, successful thoughts are entertained, they bring forth robust, constructive action, which leads to success and achievement. It is impossible to think evil thoughts and bring forth good actions. Many have tried it. Every evil thought which is entertained and gloated over, acts as a powerful suggestion to this patient giant, until at last it can stand it no longer, and bursts out into the life in the form of a course of evil action, which is an exact replica of the thoughts which have been entertained. This explains why so often people who have always been so exemplary in their conduct all at once go wrong, and come crashing down to ruin; they are simply reaping the harvest of their thoughts.
By their evil thoughts they arouse certain emotions which cannot be satisfied and which therefore have to be repressed. The effect of repression is either chronic ill-health which no medical skill can ever cure, or organic disease that is beyond the art of man to heal. There are two kinds of thought:constructive and destructive, sometimes called positive and negative. It depends upon which class of thought we persistently dwell upon and pass to the subconscious mind, what our actions in life are to be. If we allow our mind to dwell on destructive, negative thoughts, and this, unfortunately, is often the case as it requires no effort, then destructive and negative action will be the inevitable result. On the other hand, if we think positive or constructive thoughts—and, to do this, effort is required, just as effort is required in climbing a hill—constructive action takes place as a natural result.
The law is immutable: it cannot be tricked or evaded. Whatever we think becomes sooner or later translated into action; and as upon our actions our life depends, it will be seen that it is possible by thought-control to govern our life. For by controlling our thoughts we govern our actions; by governing our actions we mould our life and circumstances, thus shaping our fate.
Life is not a matter of chance or luck; it is not something out of our control; it is largely the result or effect of our thoughts. Therefore, by controlling our thoughts and this can be done—we can govern and direct our life to an almost unbelievable extent.The thinking man can either build up or destroy himself by the use or misuse of the potent power of thought.
WE do not believe that there are many who deliberately think negative thoughts.
Most people mean well and want to do good and be good (not goody, goody). But, nevertheless, most of us are wrong thinkers, more or less, and this is due, so we firmly believe, mainly to ignorance. Because it is not generally known that negative thoughts are highly destructive, we ignorantly indulge in them, thinking that they do no harm. Actually, thoughts of impurity, anger, revenge, hate, resentment, envy, brooding over wrongs, brooding over sorrows, losses and griefs; thoughts of fear, failure, weakness, penury, sickness, disease, decay, mortality and death, are all highly destructive. They are destructive of health, of happiness, of circumstances, of life in all its departments. They break down the nervous system; they paralyse endeavour; they undermine the will; they make for wrong decisions.
Because of this almost universal ignorance we most of us go on indulging in negative thinking, much to our detriment.
How many of us, for instance, realise that it is thought that kills and not lack of food in most cases of death through alleged starvation? The state of the mind and the character of the thoughts that kill, and not the lack of food. . Also, because man is prone to look to the future with anxiety he would probably be consumed with worry, fearing that he would be unable to obtain food after his compulsory fast had got beyond the beneficial stage or limit.
There is also much ignorance on another point, which is the possibility of controlling thought. It is not generally known that our thoughts can be controlled and regulated in much the same way that a London policeman controls and regulates the traffic. He holds up a hand and instantly the traffic behind him stops, allowing vehicles from a cross street to pass instead. Our thoughts can be controlled and regulated in much the same manner, Undesirable, destructive thoughts can be arrested, while other thoughts of a desirable and constructive character can be encouraged.
People say: “You can’t help thinking these thoughts can you?” They take it for granted that one cannot control one’s thoughts. They do not realise that it is possible deliberately to change the subject as regards one’s thoughts, in the same way that one changes the topic of conversation. We all of us change the subject of conversation when it becomes distasteful to us, but how many of us change the subject of our thoughts in the same deliberate manner, by the exercise of our will? Yet it can be done, almost as easily, if we will only DO IT, instead of thinking and saying that it cannot be done. Not only is it possible to change the subject of our thoughts, but it is also possible to refrain from thinking altogether. Both are accomplishments of the highest possible value and they can be acquired only by practice and self training; but, even the weakest of us can acquire them if we are quietly persistent.
WE are all victims, more or less, of suggestion. Strong-minded and unscrupulouspeople deliberately influence others by suggestion, in order to take advantage of them. Counsel in Court says to a witness: “I suggest to you,” and then follows a suggestion that may be both untrue and unfair, yet it may so overwhelm or confuse a witness as to destroy the value of his evidence. Thus does a strong mind dominate a weaker by force of will and suggestion. In a thousand and one different ways we are affected by suggestion. We receive it through the eyes, the ears, taste, smell, and touch. We are victims of it at every turn, unless we learn to become positive-minded and proof against suggestion in all its forms. . Newspaper and magazine advertising of patent medicines are most potent and powerful mediums of suggestion. We have already mentioned the effect of being told day by day, in our paper and by means of hoardings, to take a certain make of pills.
Pictures of people sneezing, and of others doubled up with painful backs, can have only one effect, and that is to make people imagine that they possess the ailment described.
Then there is what is termed “mass suggestion”. We are all inclined to think the same thoughts as the mob, and to have the same emotions aroused within us as sway the masses of the people.
It is difficult for one of the crowd not to be moved with the crowd. This is why people, who in the ordinary way are sensible, go “mafficking” on occasions of national rejoicing. It is also the reason why people who are peaceable and harmless in private life may, when in a crowd, join in acts of violence and disorder. It is simply that the mass emotion gets hold of them, influencing them so strongly they get carried away.
It is a fact that some people are more easily influenced by suggestion than others.
Some are stolid and phlegmatic, and upon these suggestion appears to have less effect. Others, on the contrary, are more sensitive and highly strung. These are greatly influenced by suggestion, falling an easy prey until they learn to become proof against it. Such may feel that they are “hard done by”, and that life has dealt unfairly with them, by making them so sensitive.
MOULDING AND SHAPING LIFE LIKE CLAY IN THE HANDS OF THE POTTER
WHY is right thought so important? It is important because it influences our actions. It is important because it builds up character and a steadfast mind. It is important because upon it our well-being and the success of our whole life depend. It is important because it is by right thought that we can overcome harmful
suggestion. First of all we have to realise that thought is the cause of our actions and decisions.
It is largely because of this that our circumstances depend upon our thoughts. If, for instance, we do not overcome life’s difficulties in our thoughts , then we can never overcome them in actual experience. By this I mean that our difficulties must be boldly met and conquered in thought, if ever we are to hope to overcome them actually.
Such people say: “I never indulge in wrong thoughts about my troubles, I refuse to think about them.” Just so, and it is here where the whole trouble lies. Instead of life’s trouble being met boldly and conquered in thought they are run away from. As soon as the mind comes up against an unpleasant thought, thought of an irksome duty that must be done or of a crisis that must be faced, or of a difficulty that has to be overcome, the mind “dodges” it and hits on to something more pleasant. The one who says : “I never think of my troubles” and who runs away from unpleasant thoughts of this kind finds that he can never overcome the actual difficulties when they arise. In fact his so-called right thinking prevents him from making decisions and from dealing firmly and sensibly with his difficulties. We must first overcome in our thoughts, if ever we are to overcome in actual experience.
The secret of overcoming is in thought victory. If we continually overcome in our thoughts we develop a steadfast mind. Without a steadfast mind it is impossible to be victorious in life’s battle. On the other hand, there is no difficulty, capable of human solution, that cannot be overcome by a steadfast mind. Indeed, if a man’s mind is steadfastly directed towards a certain object, not only will he be truly successful, but the most remarkable things may happen or be achieved, beyond anything that might be hoped for or expected.
The mind becomes powerful, growing in strength continually, through meeting a difficulty, in thought; moving forward towards the difficulty, in thought; and then putting the weight of the mind and will behind it. Then the “whole man” moves forward, going right through the difficulty to the other side, victoriously.
This generates inward power, that is cumulative, which, when we come to our difficulty in actual experience, helps us through it successfully.
Worry is a destroyer. By worrying over our troubles we not only stimulate fear, one of the most destructive of the emotions, but we also wear grooves in the brain, round which our thoughts revolve in endless repetition. The brain becomes so constructed or arranged, through the practice of worrying, that worry becomes a habit. That is to say, as soon as a thought of some impending trouble comes to us, or something goes wrong in our life or work, or we think that something has gone wrong or will go wrong, or we fear that it may go wrong, then immediately the cells used by worry are stimulated into action being already fully charged with nervous energy, waiting to explode and round and round the thoughts go, along the groove prepared for them. Then good-bye to our peace of mind; good-bye to sleep; and, in time, good-bye to health.
Some people are of a worrying nature. They inherit it from their parents. The writer is one of them. Some people, on the contrary, never worry about anything.
We think, however, that the proportion of people who worry is much larger than that of those who do not.
But while we must not worry about our troubles or imaginary fears, yet we must meet them boldly in thought and will. On no account must we run away from them, for there probably is nothing more negative and destructive than this. Those who refuse to face their difficulties and who keep on dodging the issue are, generally speaking, the greatest of worriers. Avoiding the issue in thought increases the trouble, therefore there is really more about which to worry.
At the risk of repeating myself I must again point out this most vital and important truth that we must overcome in thought. The teaching that bids you merely to dismiss your trouble from your mind and think of pleasant things, or to indulge in a day-dreaming, can be positively followed, but as usually applied is quite negative. When applied in a negative way it weakens the will, robs one of initiative, and destroys one’s power to decide and act. Instead of avoiding the issue, whenever the thought of the impending trouble or difficulty rises into consciousness, we should meet it boldly, affirming our ability to overcome it and be victorious. If, every time the thought arises, it is met with an affirmation of power, overcoming and victory, then when the time arrives to meet the difficulty in actual experience, we find that we have ample power to overcome and go victoriously through the experience. We find ourselves steadfast in mind and possessed of a reserve of power that surprises us.
Meeting thoughts of failure, difficulty or fear in this way has an effect upon the subconscious mind. It receives a definite lead and realises what is expected of it.
. Some people are naturally given to negative mental picturing. When they think of quarter-day they picture themselves as unable to pay their rent, and the awful consequences, such as forced sale, eviction, and so on. La plage - Yann Tiersen(video)
Unfortunately, allowing such mental pictures to occupy the mind is liable to attract to them the very conditions that they fear and visualise; therefore, it is of the utmost importance that all such negative mental pictures should be reversed into their positive opposites.
As mental picturing is probably the most powerful form of thinking, too much importance can hardly be paid to its right cultivation. Who can tell what direful effects are caused by this inward pessimism? As I have said elsewhere, a belief in evil tends to bring evil to pass. A belief in failure tends to produce failure; a belief in disease tends to produce disease, and so on.
We are drawn together by the invisible forces of attraction. This atmosphere, aura or personal magnetism either attracts people and opportunities, or drives them away.
It is true that the character of our thoughts becomes, in course of time, written on our face, so that all the world can see if we are pure or filthy, strong or weak, loving or hard, noble or base; but it is largely the attractive power of thought that draws people to us. .
The human mind, although in one sense it can be called creative, is more of a receptacle of thought than a generator of the same. We have as it were, two doors to our mind, one opening to a stream of heavenly, good, beautiful, ennobling, healthful and wholesome thoughts; the other opening to a stream of undesirable, weakening, destructive thoughts. It is impossible to have both of these doors open at the same time.
We are servants one of another. Until we realise this we are out of harmony with life and the universe, not only in our actions but in our thoughts; for, if we have a wrong idea of life, then all our thoughts must naturally be wrong also.
Source: HENRY THOMAS HAMBLIN- THE POWER OF THOUGHT