What you focus on

 

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When you focus on a habit in another which irritates you, you give this energy and you see more and more of it.

When instead you make an effort to focus on what you appreciate in another person and focus on your love for them or wishing the very best for them, you see increase in this – increase of love and appreciation and good feeling, and increase in whatever quality in them you have chosen to focus on.

When you focus on setbacks, sickness, symptoms, things you fear, you give these energy and you see more and more of them.

If you keep thinking about what has upset you, going over and over it in your mind, your upset gets stronger. When you focus on your wounds from the past, you keep them alive, you keep experiencing them.

What you focus on increases.  Where you put your attention you are giving energy to.

Say you are waiting for someone and you feel impatient. The more you focus on the waiting the more impatient you get. If instead you decide to use the time to relax yourself, connect with yourself and your choice to relax, you feel very different.

When we have pain and we focus on it, it increases. I once read about a woman who had a pain in one part of her body and she was experiencing this as very difficult. Then she developed a pain in another part of her body and realised a few days later that she was no longer feeling the original pain even though it was still there. Fear makes pain stronger and difficult to manage and it makes us feel powerless. Pain is telling us something. We need to listen and understand.

Focus on something you’re worried about and it gets stronger. Anxiety builds as we give it attention and with it, a sense of powerlessness.  We can choose instead to stop the worry, the anxiety and use our minds to think differently and stop giving our power away to anxiety. Worry is negative affirmation and we don’t want to give this energy.

What you focus on, increases. What you focus on and give attention to, you intensify and strengthen. Energy follows thought and thoughts are powerful. They create.

Depression

 

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We now talk of depression as an illness and the most usual solution is medication. Depression has become such a blanket term. It’s a label that is not at all helpful to us, I think.

I have heard some doctors prescribe daily walks and time in Nature and that has been of great help to many who were fortunate enough to be given such a prescription.

Many see themselves as likely to suffer depression because one of their parents did. I think this is just a learned response to stress or some unresolved issues. Some tell themselves the story that depression runs in families. No, just patterns of thinking, feeling and behaviour.

We need to look at the cause of depression – not just try to treat the symptom. Depression is an experience of defeat, of feeling something is too big, too overwhelming to deal with. It can be the result of long term unresolved negative thoughts and feelings. It can be caused by hurt and anger issues that have been internalised. Perhaps a stressful situation has been experienced for a long time or a person does not know how to talk about what’s bothering them or who to talk to – it may seem too awful to share or the idea of talking is too frightening.

Depression can also be the result of being cut off spiritually, having no connection with your Soul and with the purpose and meaning of life.

Alcohol, drugs and junk food can be causes of depression too.

People who describe themselves as depressed need to have the experience of expressing their issues in a safe situation with someone they can trust, and, through this, discover how they can heal and learn to feel good about themselves and life – and change their experience.

Depression is not an illness. It’s a response to a stressful situation. In some situations a person may need short term medication because they are not responding to the opportunity to talk about what’s bothering them.  This will not address the cause of the experience of feeling depressed but it will hopefully bring the person to the point where they can deal with the cause of their stress in a safe situation.

When you feel low ask yourself why. Listen and write in your journal. Think about why you are feeling depressed or low in energy.  Don’t just go for the quick fix and cover up the cause. Depression is an effect – look for the cause and learn and heal and grow. Take back your power to be healthy, strong and full of vitality.

Discernment  

 

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Discernment is such an important quality for each of us to develop. This means that you use your mind to think about things and discern what is truth. Your attitude is one of love, not fear.

In my newsletters I share many different ideas with you. You may find yourself rejecting some of the ideas I include. I’m not asking you to believe what I say but to think about it and try it out.

We need to open our minds to new thinking, new ideas, try them out and practise discerning what is truth. Each one of us has an inner knowing of truth. But we need to use it, work with it, so that it gets stronger.

Very often we reject ideas because they don’t fit with how we have always believed things to be. They take us out of our comfort zone so we close our minds. Fear is the reason for this.

Rejecting an idea is generally an emotional reaction. Instead ask yourself why you are resisting or rejecting some new thinking or new idea. When you do this you are using your power to think and your power to discern truth instead of giving your power away to your emotions.

It’s certainly not that you should accept every new idea, but don’t throw it out without some clear thinking.

So much of our thinking is emotional. The world is emotionally polarised – everything is emotion and more emotion. We are very identified with our emotions and we can’t control what we are identified with.

This is worth lots of discussion.

We also have prejudices and blind spots and these will stay firmly locked in position until we are ready to look at them, think about them and think about why we hold onto them. “It is harder to crack an atom than a prejudice.” Einstein

Each of us has inner wisdom and the ability to discern truth but we need to use this, practise thinking about new ideas, to develop our power to discern truth.

 

Buddha said it well –

“Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumoured by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it!”

 

The Lower Nature and Our Higher Nature

 

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We have a lower nature and a higher nature. The lower nature is the part of me that is self-centred – relating everything to myself.  It’s the part of me that is all concerned with what I like and don’t like; with what I want and don’t want; with whether I’m happy, at ease, feeling safe, feeling liked. It’s the part of me that blames and complains, judges and criticises, gets caught in superiority or inferiority, shame and guilt. All of these are the result of the false belief that I am a physical body, an ego, separate. The belief in separation causes the fear and self concern.

We have 3 bodies – the physical body, the emotional body and the mental body.  When the lower nature rules the physical body we might eat and drink whatever we like without any thought as to what is good for the body and how to look after it.

When the lower nature rules the emotional body we allow ourselves to be run by our emotions. We react to people and situations and experience constant inner and outer conflict. Fear seems so real.

When the lower nature rules the mental body we have constant negative, separative, fear-based thoughts.

When the lower nature is ruling we very often feel powerless, a victim, tossed around by the storms of life. We are rudderless, without clear direction.

Our work is to master our 3 bodies – to understand that we need to take charge of our bodies rather than allow them to run us. Our higher nature expresses the qualities and aspirations of our Soul.

Some months ago I had a very clear experience of this choice between the higher and lower nature. There was a misunderstanding and as I walked downstairs to get something, I thought to myself, oh Gill, lesson, challenge, opportunity and I smiled. I could see so clearly my choice to react back and aim to be top dog or to choose love. I thought to myself, why would I want to make another person feel small. It’s not to say there wasn’t negativity in the behaviour of the other person but if I want to build my higher nature and stop being run by my lower nature then I need to sacrifice my lower nature.  I need to higher the frequencies of my bodies by seeking to learn and grow and improve, by practising the qualities and powers of my Soul.