One of the things that has become evident to me is that we are a product of our environment...that means the physical environment and the mental one
We choose to live with clean air and water if possible, and we also have to make sure that we put the kinds of food into our bodies that will nourish and support us. We are aware of the impact our food choices make on our wellbeing physically.
Mentally, we are often much more lax. We often operate on automatic pilot, and allow the lesser mind to handle the function of choice. Yet, here is one of the most important points of focus that we have, because what the mind perceives affects how the body will respond.
We are bombarded by thought less messages within the world. It comes from all around us...Internet, radio, television, magazines, newspaper, and gossip. We wake up and immediately turn to things that will stimulate our mind, and we can become addicted to external stimulus just as we are to stimulants like coffee or cigarettes. We are aware of the results of stimulants on the body. They have a narcotic effect that leads to deterioration of the body over extended period of usage. However, we are less aware of the insidious effect of mental narcotics. When we find ourselves "hooked" on external stimulus, we become prey to the potentially debilitating effect these messages have on us
In a recent workshop, educators gathered from around the country in New Mexico to view the effects of watching violence on television and movies. During this two-week seminar on the effects of violence on children, the participants noted that their initial shock and distress at images of graphic violence became dulled as the workshop unfolded. By the end of the conference, what had been horrifying became no big deal
The conscious mind will adapt to its surroundings in order to survive, but the seeds of distress are implanted into the subconscious mind where they manufacture powerful images of dis-ease and distress that affect the whole system. The results may not appear immediately, but they do over time. Just as the person who eats junk food for years and brags that there is no ill effect, only to be confronted at some point with an illness related to the weakening of the body, so too with the mental body.
It is essential to turn off the spigot to those things that debilitate us. We need to recognize this with the food and stimulants we choose to take into our body, and we have to be equally vigilant about the mental diet we are being fed. If we constantly depend on things externally that stimulate us, we shut down our inner guidance system that will provide fresh ideas, inspiration, and meaningful information. We trade that for momentary fulfillment, arguing that we have to know what is going on. Yet, what we really need to know is what is going in.
In order to live a life of quality, we have to choose a life of quality. It starts within ourselves, and depends on the caliber of the food and mental diet we feed ourselves. If we find ourselves stuffing, it is to overcome a perceived lack. We are trying to fill a hole that cannot be filled, because we are looking for satisfaction in the wrong places. The only satisfaction that truly fulfills us is that which comes from our connection to the Source of Life and Light. Ego will disparage this...will put it down as pap or nonsense. It wants the graphic "violence" that violates Spirit. It is interested in messages and foods that assault rather than heal.
Spirit is not pap. It is not passive. It is alive and vibrant and begins to make the whole body "sing" with excitement and enthusiasm because it links us once again with our purpose and brings us "home"...the place from which we all have come and to which we will all return. Like the Prodigal Son, it is only the time in which we make the return trip that is our choice. We will make it. The key for a life is to recognize the gift in that life. As we seek to get out of our life, to escape to a far off place, or to keep ourselves revved up on external stimulation, we will never find satisfaction. We will always look for greener pastures, and feel discontent. The Source of what we seek is not in a distant place or a different life. It is within ourselves. And the discomfort of being quiet or with ourselves or of looking within is the fear of not finding. Yet how can we not find what has always been?
We are like the wealthy man who never believes he has enough. His wealth is awesome, but he keeps looking outside to find it, when all the time it resides within. The external vision will never locate the source of our wealth, nor give the ability to enjoy what is our birthright. External vision only sees lack, not enough, the need for more. When the turn is made, the intent is forged from desire into conviction, and the soul releases attachment to the false gods of stimulation that have imprisoned and debilitated it. Then the wellspring of true knowledge and creativity come bubbling to the surface. The gift of life is experienced. Renewal takes place.
There is no way out but in. Everything else leads to the illusion of annihilation. Abundant life is our heritage, but we have a choice to choose it now or defer it. We can continue to suffer, or open ourselves to receive our inheritance. The longer we defer life, the more uncomfortable it becomes. Thick heads sometimes need harsh medicine to wake them up. Sometimes the ego's will is so entrenched that it determines to drive the soul into death before life is found. The ego here is like the story in Solomon where two women claim to be the mother of the same baby. Solomon declares that the way to make it fair is to cut the child in half. One mother leaps up..."YES! Cut the baby in half." And the other cries out in horror..."No, no, let her have the child. Keep it whole." Spirit always chooses mercy. Ego never does unless it is to its own advantage.
It's our choice. How do we choose?