Monday, January 28, 2013

I Think Therefore I am - NOT

I think, therefore I am  was a statement made by French philosopher René Descartes (1596-1650).  His rational conclusion was based on experience and observation; and he rejected mysticism and religion.  Many thinkers during the Renaissance period followed that assumption; it eventually developed into the enlightenment age, and in the long run was adopted as dialectical materialism by the communist/liberal agenda.  Unfortunately, the philosophical approach brought about the bloody French Revolution and later the extermination of millions of people who didn’t agree with the Communist approach.


I had an interesting experience yesterday all day that I became aware of my thoughts not being me.  Many of these thoughts were negative.  Partially, I was sitting in church, and even throughout the afternoon I debated these thoughts.  I thought to myself: “I don’t like these thoughts; that is not me; I don’t believe what these thoughts tell me; why are you criticizing this person; go away, etc.”  Before I knew it the thoughts were gone. 


Become the observer

I remember that in the past I would dwell on this negative process, even being embarrassed by the idea that I am a hypocrite.  I have these bad thoughts even though I want to be good and do well.  For the longest time that has caused me to struggle and doubt my own identity.

I have studied these ideas before.  We should become the watcher, observe these thoughts and let them pass through us.

“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.
~ John 8:32

Descartes’ thinking was based on a wrong assumption.  Now we know that we don’t exist because of our thinking.  Man is an eternal spiritual being living in a physical environment.  That spiritual nature exists on an energy level and is sensitive to vibrations, words, and feelings.  If we only allow our rational mind to direct our lives we miss out a lot.  In fact, we can’t perceive the feelings and vibrations with our intellect.  Our conscious mind is most responsive to logic while the subconscious mind records all of our experiences, feelings and notices every person we ever meet; and is autonomously in control of all bodily functions: breathing, heart beats, digestion, and memories. 

Be present as the watcher of your mind -- of your thoughts and emotions as well as your reactions in various situations. Be at least as interested in your reactions as in the situation or person that causes you to react. Notice also how often your attention is in the past or future. Don't judge or analyze what you observe. Watch the thought, feel the emotion, observe the reaction. Don't make a personal problem out of them. You will then feel something more powerful than any of those things that you observe: the still, observing presence itself behind the content of your mind, the silent watcher.”
~ Eckhart Tolle,  spiritual teacher.

Eckhart Tolle suggests that we observe the thinker rather than be the thinker.  Being detached from the thoughts allows us to be neutral and declare our own identity rather than identifying ourselves with it.  Since this kind of idea is contrary to the popular approach it is a challenge to change.  To be the observer also works with feelings.  Since feelings are ever so much stronger it takes greater self-discipline but the reward is most satisfying.  You are not just happy or sad for what happens to you in the moment but you decide to be happy.  

Conscious Effort
Spiritual growth comes only through conscious effort.  Because our mind is constantly influenced by our thinking, it takes conscious endeavor to stay in the present moment.  Only in the present moment can we unite our mind and our body and bring the spirit of God into our midst. It takes our full attention to stay in the NOW; that’s where we can be free to feel love, value, and perfection.

Our spiritual DNA is perfect

At the very essence of our human being, there is a truth, a perfect image which resembles God.  Keeping this self-image in mind, we cannot be influenced by thoughts, feelings, or other vibrations.  We only need to remind ourselves constantly of that essence.  It helps to study scripture, keep an active prayer life, and do right.


It is interesting to know that the Eastern Philosophies take a more internal approach and therefore are encouraging us to meditate and reflect in order to connect to our true essence.  It is time that we are open to explore the last frontier, the mind of man, and through that connect with our source, the God-parent who created us.  We were created in God’s image (Genesis 1:27); it’s time to learn the whole story of what separated us from that original image, and how we can come back to it.  
It is through the teaching of Rev. Sun Myung Moon that I discovered why the statement of Descartes was wrong.  His insight in the historical development of the last 400 years shows parallels of teachings following an atheistic (Cain-type) way of thinking and an a religious (Able-type) way of thinking.  Descartes’ ideas fall into the first category.
My conclusion is this: Focus your mind on feeling good, use affirmative words, listen to uplifting music, act in goodwill, and concentrate on values and a vision worth pursuing for a lifetime.

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