|Written by Gina Lake|
|Wednesday, 13 January 2010 07:09|
Have you noticed that believing something doesn't make it so? As much as the ego would like to believe that believing something has the power to make it happen, it just doesn't have that much power. You have believed lots of things that never came to pass, and many things have come to pass that you never believed would happen. The ego wants so much to be able to control life so that it can get what it wants, but the purpose of life isn't to please the ego. This egocentric view is, in fact, the cause of so much suffering. The ego wants life its way, but life isn't about giving the ego what it wants, but about pointing us to what brings lasting happiness and fulfillment: love, peace, unity, goodness, compassion, wisdom, service, learning, and growth.
Belief does have some power, however. A positive belief has the power to neutralize a negative one, and negative beliefs can stop us from taking action that would bring us what we want. That is why believing something positive often has the effect of creating it. Positive beliefs don't cause what we want to happen, however, as much as they allow what we want to be created by us or received by us because we are no longer blocking it by thinking negatively. Affirmations work, not because the affirmation itself creates what we want, but because an affirmation can help us release, or neutralize, any beliefs that stand in the way of creating or receiving what we want.
Our negative beliefs are powerful if we believe them. But if we don't, they have no power whatsoever. Can an idea affect the world? Only if it is believed and only if it is put into action. The belief itself, which is just an idea, has no power of its own. Everyone has beliefs and negative thoughts. If they aren't believed, they end there and quickly disappear. They may show up again and again, but if they are ignored, they don't affect us or anything else.
We don't have the power to determine what thoughts show up in our mind, but we do have the power to choose to believe them and respond to them or not. Not everyone realizes they have that power, but that doesn't mean they don't. What an amazing step in evolution it is to realize you have this power. That realization is the beginning of freedom from the egoic mind.
When negative thoughts have been reinforced repeatedly by believing them, you may not feel like you have much power to ignore them. Thoughts that have been believed and reinforced by feelings and actions can feel very compelling, but you always have the choice to give them your attention or not. That power to choose is the great gift we have been given. But we have to use that gift, and that sometimes takes considerable will. When you first begin to choose differently and choose to ignore a thought instead of believing it, it can seem very difficult—almost impossible. But each subsequent choice becomes easier.
Eventually, those negative thoughts won't show up anymore, and a choice won't even be necessary. You will function from Essence, and the egoic mind will be like a whisper in the background, if you experience it at all. Waking up isn't easy. For most people, it is a gradual process that requires choosing over and over again not to listen to the negative mind but to something else that speaks to us and moves us, not through our mind, but through our intuition and our very being.