On our spiritual Journey, we live unconsciously, derive our identity from our thoughts, that is, we fully identify with our thoughts. In that state we believe that if we have negative, bad thoughts, we ourselves are bad, while if we have positive thoughts, we are “all right.” Now, let us play with the following thought: Negative thoughts are not bad at all.
As it is just a game, we should leave behind all social training about who we are, when we are “all right” and when we are not, that we have received throughout our personal history. You can experience the painful moments of departure, but also the power of the defiant warrior when you are reading the sentence: My negative thoughts are not bad at all, and apply it to yourself.
A game with thoughts
You are invited to play with this idea, and not to imagine a brighter future when negative ideas cease to bother you, when you only have positive thoughts that fill you with pleasant emotions. Those ideas about an imaginary future are the ones that we tend to regularly use as an escape route, a ladder to emerge from what are sometimes abysmal depths.
The negative thoughts are therefore not bad.
Let us now look upon a thought as a thought and nothing more. The regulating influence of our environment, however, has brought us up to judge everything –including thoughts– according to the current social value system and morals. If a thought is judged by those norms as negative, we may conclude that the emotions triggered by the thought are negative and not the thought itself.
Let us take an example from literature (as such a thing in real life does not exist): “I wish I could kill my boss…” – one may think. What is wrong with this idea?
Stop for a while and formulate and answer for yourself. (If you need help, remember an actual experience of yours or find a person in connection with whom you have had such an idea). First, this is your own idea. Nearly seven billion other people do not have any problem with your boss, as the situation does not affect them. Second, if that idea arises in you, then there has to be some unpleasant, negative emotion together with it.
Our reaction in instinctive and immediate: we want to suppress and eliminate the unpleasant emotion without a trace. The natural death of the boss would provide a miraculous escape and would redeem us–that is what we blindly and erroneously believe. Reality, though, offers such a comforting solution to us extremely rarely, so we lull the unpleasant emotion with a palliative treatment only. The wealth of–useless–means for a palliative treatment, available for money, is accessible for everyone.
A mirror of negative thoughts
Palliative care will only afford temporary relief. The negative thought and with that, the unpleasant emotion will regularly return and the hoped death of the boss will change course and turn against us: ”How can I have such an idea?” ”What kind of a person am I?”, ”Am I a fool?” These ideas are new judgments that further worsen our unpleasant emotions, adding a sense of incompetence to it.
I hope you have not forgotten that I called you to play a realistic game, and not a card game in which all the cards in the pack are losing ones. ”But how can one play with someone who is not a friend, but an enemy?” – feel free to ask that question.
Open your eyes and you will see that a ”negative thought” is your friend, a real friend. Its first help as a friend is that it holds up a mirror in front of you. In that mirror you can see calmly, without a judgment, what is in you, what is your socially determined life like.
But stop! Do not run away now, like the athlete who balks at the last moment before jumping and turns his energy to leaving the track. The mirror of the negative thought, as your friend, will make it clear for you that you have been the victim of an identification and not of your boss. The egoistic (mis)belief in your own truth has kept reinforcing it all the time.
This is the moment of jumping, a moment from which your life, up to this moment apparently painful, difficult and absurd is visible from the outside. You will realize that it is no longer your life, it is merely a part of a personal history with which you have unconsciously identified so far.
Another friendly help from the negative thought is (and it is when you are already in the air after the moment of jumping), that the negative thought always contains the chance to terminate (still not the life of your boss, but) your identifying with the thoughts. After springing from the ground, at the moment of jumping, you may see that your identity is not the thought, but the Consciousness contemplating the thought.
The negative thought somehow penetrated your Consciousness and, at the first sight, it appeared to be repulsive, but in the lovelight of Consciousness it will soon turn out that it came in order to free you from your captivity. It helped you on your way towards a real human existence and, upon completing its mission, it departed as a friend.
It vanished, dissolved again where it belongs: eternity. That is how it became a good friend, instead of the false enemy that you unconsciously regarded it to be. After its departure, your energies are no longer tapped, as the energy required to sustain it is not needed any more.
(C) Frank M. Wanderer, 2013-2015
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About the author:
Frank M. Wanderer Ph.D is a professor of psychology, a consciousness researcher and writer. Frank is the author of the books “The Revolution of Consciousness: Deconditioning the Programmed Mind “, “The Biggest Obstacle to Enlightenment: How to Escape from the Prison of Mind Games?” and several books on consciousness. With a lifelong interest in the mystery of human existence, Frank’s work is to help others wake up from identification with our personal history and the illusory world of the forms and shapes, and to find our identity in what he calls “the Miracle”, the mystery of the Consciousness.
He has contributed to a few different spiritual websites including The Mind Unleashed, Wake Up World, Spirit Science, Waking Times, Zen Gardner, Awakening People, My Empowered World, ChangeYour Thoughts, and Body, Mind, Soul, Spirit.