Archive for the ‘ Mental Mechanisms for Change ’ Category

Attraction is a Deliberate Mindset

I was watching a television show recently that featured people who are struggling with various kinds of addiction.  My heart goes out to these people.  Granted, their behavior can sometimes be very difficult to deal with, confronting, even abusive.  It’s important to keep in mind that this is the addiction, the disease talking.  Despite the sometimes challenging behavior, I can still see the pain these people are in.  The addiction is so often a means of self-medication, and I know that in addition to the physical pain they feel, there is the challenge of confronting the emotional pain their addiction has covered up for so long.

In this particular show, a young man was struggling with an addiction to heroin.  As is often the case, the first few days in recovery are the worst.  As he was speaking about the physical discomfort and pain he experienced, he then commented about his emotional and psychological struggle.  He said, “I don’t know why God put me on this planet.”

The look on his face revealed the pain and desolation he experienced at not knowing how to answer this question for himself.

His comment struck me and made me think about what his experience can teach.  Perhaps because I work as a therapist I see more than my share of people who struggle with a similar sense of personal desolation; not knowing what to do in the absence of a sense of meaning for one’s life.

I thought about what it might be like to talk to such a person about Law of Attraction.  It occurred to me that this may not be such a welcome conversation, particularly at such a low point in one’s life.  It occurred to me that before someone in such a situation would really welcome such a conversation there would need to be some personal healing (that seems obvious, doesn’t it…).  But beyond that, the statement itself, “I don’t know why God has put me on this planet” suggests a lack of control;  a perception that the circumstances of your life (his life, in this case, but really anyone who is trying to successfully apply these principles) are in control and you’re at the mercy of these powerful forces.

It’s like a pinball in a pinball machine, bouncing from one bumper to another.

Knowledge of the Law of Attraction holds the promise of realizing your dream life, but it also calls on those who want to deliberately apply it to take full responsibility of the circumstances of their lives.  It’s worth noting that this is much easier said than done in most cases.  The way we, humans, that is, tend to interpret experiences and attribute causes seems to reflect a stronger desire to avoid responsibility than to embrace it.  Yet being successful as a deliberate creator means owning what’s yours to be responsible for; embracing your responsibility and in the process recognizing that doing so demonstrates your awareness of yourself as a powerful deliberate creator.

Best wishes,

Dr. Ralph W.

The Ego’s Demand for “How”

Achieving success and manifesting abundance in your life can sometimes seem like a difficult task to accomplish.  Please not that I’m saying, “seems” like a difficult task.  As many who have achieves success will tell you, manifesting a million dollars is as easy as manifesting ten thousand.  At first glance the reactions that typically make it difficult for those who don’t have a million dollars to achieve such a goal are readily apparent and usually occur as one question, “How?”  This question stops many would be millionaires from taking the steps necessary to attain the abundance they desire.  Faith and trust become the commodities that are in need, quelling the ego’s inevitable question of “how?” 

Throughout your life the ego functions to answer the question, “Who or What am I?”  This question differentiates who we believe ourselves to be from everything and everyone else.  The activity is consistent with its nature, yet it is also what makes it difficult to quite the mental chatter long enough to hear the sometimes subtle voices of inspiration that would direct us to the kinds of activities that can support our efforts to be successful, to attract the kind of abundance we desire. 

Having made the decision to change the circumstances of your life by increasing your income, or the status of your financial resources, you only need to quiet your mind and listen for the guidance that is waiting for an opportunity to come forth.  If you think about it, moments of creativity and insight usually occur when we’ve relaxed and focused our attention on something other than the challenge we’re seeking to meet.  Practicing relaxation on a regular basis can be beneficial to creating the kind mental space that will allow for your higher self to communicate with your ego, giving it the answers it’s been seeking…, how. 

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Expanding Your Consciousness

Theories about how you can expand your consciousness, break free of limiting beliefs and experience greater abundance and wealth abound. Recently I’ve seen articles that recommend an expansion of your beliefs in an effort to increase your “comfort zone.” The idea of expanding my comfort zone in order to experience greater wealth certainly appeals to me as I’m sure it appeals to many. However, there seems to be something missing. I’ve felt compelled to ask questions that get at the underside of issues, exposing the threads of the tapestry if you will, for most of my life. In this case my desire is to understand what exactly a “comfort zone” actually is so that we might better understand how efforts to expand it occur.

Essentially, the articles I’ve seen are speaking of mental issues. In this case, we’re not just speaking of expanding your mind to incorporate more in your vision, what’s also being discussed is the feeling component, actually feeling more comfortable with something different in your experience. The objective, of course, seems to be helping those seeking this information to find greater happiness and fulfillment in their lives regardless of what it might take to achieve that goal. One of the challenges I see, however, is that many only present part of the information necessary to support those seeking this information to actually attain their goal.

For instance, let’s take happiness as an example. There are many who spend a great deal of time and effort seeking after a sense of increased happiness. Yet then never seem to realize one of the most fundamental things to know about happiness… that happiness is dependent upon your perception of the circumstances of your life as positive. Let me say that again, your experience of happiness depends upon your perception of the circumstances of your life as positive.

Does this seem somewhat contradictory to what you’ve know to this point, or to what you believe you’re working toward? If it does, don’t worry. You’re not alone. If you’re like most, however, you may be asking what the implications of this information are. The significance of this information will be discussed in just a few minutes, but for the present time, there is expanding your comfort zone.

Enlightenment traditions tell us of an indwelling Self, a soul or indwelling being that is the divine animating spark of all life upon which rests the ego-based self. The ego-bases self is that part of ourselves that we typically think of when we consider who we know ourselves to be, the history, the potential future, the husband, son, daughter, father, mother, wife, the part of us that knows and occupies these roles. It is the self that gets created through our history of experience and or expectation for our future.

The indwelling and limitless Self (designated with a capitol “S”) is truly limitless. In contrast, the ego-based self (designated with the lower-case “s”) is limited in scope and perspective. The limitless Self, the level of our being, cannot be understood by the ego, the small-s self. No matter how we might stretch, push, or pull, we’ll never be able to expand our ego to a size large enough to understand Being, the true Self. In this fashion, all beliefs are limiting. Because beliefs are structures of the mind, the province of the ego, they can do nothing but to limit that which is formless and without limit, the true Self or Being part of our own human condition.

Thus, if wealth is what you seek and you are told to simply replace limiting, and “negative” beliefs with less limiting “positive” beliefs, recognize that all beliefs are limiting and the “negative” or “positive” qualities of a belief (or anything else, for that matter) depend upon the context in which they occur for the meaning to the individual. The “negative” and “positive” are two sides of the same mental coin that are both equally limiting.

So what might be the solution? Recognizing that the ego-based self is not the true you, it is not your true Self. At the level of your Being, the unconscious part of you there are no limits; there is no time. Visualize what you desire with great clarity and emotional intensity, and then allow it come into your experience. Detach yourself from the anticipation and expectation of your desire. You will recognize quickly that your mind, your ego, will want to know “how.” It will want to know how your desire will come into your experience. Notice this urge, but do not dwell upon it. Be alert and ready to take action you are inspired to take in support of your desire. With practice you will sharpen your skills.

As for the issue of happiness it is possible to say that happiness is dependent upon our perception of the circumstances of our lives as positive. At least, this is what author and spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle says. What might be the significance of this…? To realize that we can influence our ability to feel happy simply by changing where we have our attention focused. This will require some discipline which will be discussed in another article.

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