I feel as though I sort of left yesterday’s post unfinished, now that I think about it more, and while I was doing my readings I kept mentally adding enough edits that it seemed best to just write a second part and be done with it. 😉
Today I’ve been thinking about how our current situations came to be, whether good or bad, prosperous or impoverished, in turmoil or at peace. And one thing which jumped out at me was that we didn’t have to do exercises or say affirmations or make a blueprint or exert any sort of effort in order to get where we are now.
Or did we? What goes running through your brain all day? I submit that those are your affirmations. What do you read about, watch, and talk about? What do you focus on? Those are your exercises. What are you certain of, in times of either stress or celebration? That is your blueprint.
The problem is that we have had this blueprint put on us since we were born by other people: parents, teachers, the TV, movies, songs, the news, and so on. These tell you who you are, what you should be, what you deserve, how much money it’s okay to have, where you can go, what you can do, what you can believe, how you can act, when/where/how it’s okay to eat/have sex/take care of your children, what you should look like — every single inch of your life has been dictated to you by someone else, programmed and conditioned to the point where most people don’t even know who they are anymore.
That is what this course is about: finding out who you are and creating a blueprint that fits you, not one that was put on you by others, who had theirs put on them by others, who had theirs put on them by others, and so on.
And this blueprint of yours (and mine) is so strong that it takes no effort on your part to create huge effects. Just look around you right now — you made what you see! While you might not have physically made it, you (like the architect of the battleship I talked about earlier), set events in motion which brought it to wherever you are right now, either by you physically moving to it (if, for example, you’re sitting in a park or a restaurant right now), or you bought it and took it home. The way you feel when you look at what you’re seeing, the way you view your surroundings and the people around you, everything in your life is made up of what you have been certain of.
Here’s what I see as the problem with the usual way people go about “changing their life”: they make a resolution, or set a goal, and go through all this mental effort to force themselves to do something, but since every effect (even the thing they want to change, say, being overweight, or smoking) has a definite cause, working to change the effect without changing the cause is doomed to fail. They haven’t even done a thing to change the blueprint which says “oh what a big boy Johnny is!” or “smoking makes you cool” or whatever the blueprint is, that jolt of pleasure you get for doing what you do which you know you shouldn’t.
And there’s something else which is even more important, that I have known about for many weeks, but just now really became certain of today:
Mental effort defeats itself — exactly the opposite of physical effort. A relaxed, calm state of mind is the only doorway to progress mentally. Relaxation of thought is the only access to Infinite Intelligence.
This is otherwise known as the Law of Relaxation, and has been stuck up on my wall since … I don’t know, week 3 or so? It makes me laugh to think of how it has been there the whole time.
So everyone all over the world is making “resolutions” right now: using the wrong tools (mental effort) to change effects (not causes), then after a few months, failing, repeatedly training their subby to fail, then next year either giving up (because they are certain they aren’t good enough) or vowing to do even more of this next year, because they are certain that this will work. I mean, that’s what everyone else does!
Not only that, but they are doing something else which Haanel warns against, and which was my problem the other day:
Are we to inform the Omniscient as to the proper channel to be used to materialize our demand? Can the finite advise the Infinite? This is the cause of failure …
As Albert Einstein said, insanity: doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
So what is the answer?
The main thing is to create a new blueprint which is stronger and better than the old one ever was, which it will be because it will be in alignment with who you really are. Once this new blueprint is made, doing what you want and getting what you want will be as easy and effortless as doing and getting what you have at present.
Creating and associating pleasure from doing the things which correspond with the life you want (and conversely, pain from doing the things you don’t want) is a big step, and one thing which we’ve learned how to do this week. But of course, Haanel once again emphasizes that “we must put our knowledge into practice” — just as an athlete will never become stronger by reading about lifting weights or running or whatever he or she wants to do, we aren’t going to change our blueprints by reading about how to do it. Not gonna happen.
But must use the right tools. Using woodworking tools to mix concrete, or concrete tools to work with wood, results in destroyed tools and ruined materials both. So how can we make sure we’re going to succeed?
We can best conserve our interests by recognizing the Infinite Power and Infinite Wisdom of the Universal Mind, and in this way become a channel whereby the Infinite can bring about the realization of our desire.
In other words, prioritize: put those 2000 connections of your conscious mind to work on figuring out what you want out of life. Exactly what, down to the smallest detail. Let the 4 billion connections of your subby and the infinite power of the Universal Mind work on the how. Spending your 2000 connections worrying about how this is all going to happen just manifests anxiety and fear when you can’t get it to work. This week, I learned this the hard way.
Use the right tools for the job and it becomes much easier. 🙂