Beyond Positive Thinking

Posted on by Sen.



I was an ardent reader of “self help” books since the later part of my school days and it became quite an obsession with me during my college days. The recurrent theme of most of these self-help books was the power of “positive thinking”.

It was easy to summarize, the message in all these books, in one line – “if you want a positive experience of life, then you must think positive”.

Of course the way this message was conveyed would vary from book to book. Some books used psychology-based reasoning, some books used spiritual reasoning, some books talked about the law of attraction, some books talked about the success mindset etc, but it always boiled down to “think positive”.

The indirect message that these books conveyed was to suppress anything that felt negative either through control-based techniques or through distraction. There would also be a lot of talk about “success”, in these books, where examples of men who made it “big” were touted as evidence of the power of positive thinking.

Also, the definition of success was usually given in a narrow manner of having a lot of money, of having a lot of friends, of having a great relationship, of traveling a lot, of being a leader, of being ambitious, of being a “go-getter”. Of course, there is nothing wrong with any of this, and all of this can make for some good entertainment and fun, but to specify it as the goal of life is like putting on blinders on a horse to give it a tunnel vision.

I bought into this whole philosophy of positive thinking, and it felt right to me, until some deeper questions about the reality of life started coming up. These questions started arising when I let go of trying to suppress the fear of feeling meaningless, of feeling the deep emptiness/void within, of feeling alone, of being clueless.

I sensed that the moment I let go of trying to think positive, or trying to keep myself goal-oriented, I quite naturally started sensing a deep emptiness within which is what I was trying to avoid all along, which is what all humans try to avoid using some means to cover it up, to ignore it, to suppress it. It was scary to allow this feeling of emptiness because it seemed to engulf my past mindset, it felt like a strongly depressive energy, it felt dysfunctional and it felt exhausting because the mind was fighting it constantly.

I continued to allow what was arising, even though it was unpleasant to do so, and the momentum of the mind kept fighting against this emptiness that seemed to come up.

While allowing this emptiness a lot of questions started coming up, questions about life, questions about reality, that I felt I could no longer ignore or conveniently suppress through the refuge of positive thinking.

Some of the questions were as below:

  • Why am I trying to think positive, is it just because I don’t want to feel bad? What’s wrong with feeling bad?
  • What does “positive” really mean? Is it not some means of adding a perception onto reality in order to give it some imposed meaning? If I don’t feel naturally positive about something why should I try to impose a positive thinking about it?
  • Why do I keep “trying” to find a meaning and purpose in life? Isn’t it because it gives me some pseudo sense of security that I am doing something worthwhile?
  • How can I know if what I desire is what’s right for me? What if my desire itself is coming from a place of ignorance, or a place of misunderstanding?
  • Feeling like a separate individual is what I feel naturally so why should I force myself to feel “one” with everything?
  • Why should finding peace be so important, isn’t this very mindset in opposition/resistance to allowing what’s naturally happening/arising?
  • Why is bliss deified as the highest feeling to achieve? Wouldn’t I get bored if bliss is all I had?
  • Is there really any meaning to life, any end point to reach, any real destination to conquer? Or is life just about experiencing?
  • Why is losing interest in material world (physicality) considered a “better” state to reach in spiritual circles? It may be a part of evolution of a soul but how is it a “better” state, isn’t it just another state?
  • Why are we taught to be “loving” instead of just allowing what we naturally feel, isn’t what we naturally feel the most authentic experience of the moment?

These are just some questions that came through and as you can notice there is a tint of darkness inherent in all of them.

I could sense that I naturally stopped feeling so “light natured” about life the moment I stopped trying to impose that idea (the idea of wanting to feel good about life). Initially, there was this sense of strong fear about feeling dark about life, it felt like a sacrilege, like a blasphemy towards life and yet I couldn’t stop myself from feeling this way because this is what I felt quite naturally and I had let go of trying to impose anything on myself. I was just allowing what was coming up naturally.

Having read loads of literature on the “law of attraction” I felt that these dark feelings, that were arising, were going to attract a lot of negative reality in my life. I wanted to get back to feeling/thinking positive, but I just couldn’t, and at one point I simply surrendered to allowing what was arising – if life was going to get negative, I was fine with it (by “fine” I don’t mean I was “happy” with it, I was just fine with it like I stopped being afraid of the negative).

With time, I noticed, in this surrender, that rather than becoming negative life actually seemed to become more balanced, I could sense an emotional stability within me that I never felt before, I could feel that I was no longer dictated by any feeling, any thought or any belief. I could sense my personality changing in terms of an integration of power (and objectivity) that was missing before. I could sense that I had developed an independent thinking which was free of the influence of any books I had read or any teacher I had listened to – for the first time I actually felt an “originality” in me that I never did before (all my life I had only tried to copy others).

In this state of openness I also got the answers to my questions (cited above), not answers that I wanted to hold on to but answers that just felt like a knowing. These were the answers (to each of the question I mentioned above, sequentially).

1.) Why am I trying to think positive, is it just because I don’t want to feel bad? What’s wrong with feeling bad?

There is nothing wrong with feeling bad, it’s just natural to feel bad because we are sensitive beings. To try to suppress these “bad feelings” is unnatural, and is done either out of fear or out of some external conditioning. “Feeling good” is just one experience, it’s not everything, it’s not a higher state.

Being human, being life-energy, includes feeling good and feeling bad, the light and dark. The problem is with “imbalance”, when you suppress bad feelings, or try to cling to good feelings, you create imbalance and this imbalance gathers momentum, and this momentum is what becomes disturbing.

2.) What does “positive” really mean? Is it not some means of adding a perception onto reality in order to give it some imposed meaning? If I don’t feel naturally positive about something why should I try to impose a positive thinking about it?

In the light of aligned understanding (or clear awareness) you neither feel positive about life nor do you feel negative about it – you sense life in its ordinariness, its beauty and its limitation, its pros and cons, its mix of light and dark nature.

You don’t feel a sense of awe about anything neither do you feel depressed about anything. It’s a “neutral” place of functioning, but it’s not a dull neutrality rather it’s an objective/reality-based neutrality, the neutrality that allows for wisdom to operate, the neutrality that makes you mature where you stop being naive, where you stop craving, where you stop holding rigid views.

3.) Why do I keep “trying” to find a meaning and purpose in life? Isn’t it because it gives me some pseudo sense of security that I am doing something worthwhile?

Life has no inherent meaning except that it’s following its nature. The nature of life is rooted in a desire for growth, for self-expression and self-experience.

You can never stop this “nature” in you, you can’t stop the desire for growth, the desire for expression or the desire for experience. It’s okay if you want to give a meaning to your growth or expression, but it’s not really the meaning that drives you, it’s your very nature to be driven. You will be driven even if you let go of trying to associate meanings or purpose – you can never reach a place of doing “nothing”, you will always do something or the other, trying to be “blank”, or being blank, is just a temporary state of experience (and it’s also a doing) it’s not some ideal state to achieve or stay in.

I don’t see a big meaning in anything and yet I am driven to do things that feel like a requirement, that feel interesting, that feel like an expression, that feel like an experience and that feel like growth. For example, I am writing this post not because I associate an importance with it (as if this is some truth that needs to be out there or that everyone needs to know) but because I feel like expressing this, for no other reason but for the sake of expression.

4.) How can I know if what I desire is what’s right for me? What if my desire itself is coming from a place of ignorance, or a place of misunderstanding?

I can never know if what I desire is right for me, so I am open to allowing the collective wisdom of life to operate instead of trying to force my specification. If a desire finds fulfillment its fine, if it doesn’t that’s fine too, it’s no longer that important to meet a desire and they don’t invoke the same “craving” energy that they did in a state of delusion.

A desire is just a thought towards a certain expression or experience or growth, nothing more nothing less, and it’s natural to desire because it’s inherent to our nature. I am not opposed to desires neither do they have a strong hold over me, it’s just one part of living.

5.) Feeling separate is what I feel naturally so why should I force myself to feel “one” with everything?

Though we inherently come from the same space/source of life, we are separate beings/souls, each of us, and we can’t ever feel “one” with each other totally – we will always be separate souls, eternally. Each of us has our expression to live, our experiences to have and our growth path to traverse. Each of us has our own pace of evolution, and though, eventually, we all evolve in the same way, towards the same maturity, but our experience of our journey will always be personal to us – no-one can ever know you the way you know yourself, only you can meet yourself 100%, this means that you will always feel alone in some way and it’s best to connect with this aloneness instead of fighting it.

Though we are all made of the same “one life-energy” we are all separate in our mix of personality (not just as humans but also as non-physical souls) which also keeps getting molded through our experiences. Feeling separate is a reality of your life, as a being, it’s best to embrace the sense of your individuality instead of trying to dissolve it. However, just because you feel separate doesn’t mean you can’t be sensitive to others, we are all connected as life-energy (connected and yet separate) and hence can “sense” each other.

The balance this reality of oneness and separation is of essence – to just focus on oneness can lead to a disconnection with your individuality and to just focus on separation can lead to insensitivity towards the outside.

6.) Why should finding peace be so important, isn’t this very mindset in opposition/resistance to allowing what’s naturally happening/arising?

There is a difference between “trying” to find peace and being at peace with life. When you are at peace with life you are also at peace with not being peaceful – that’s the paradox, once you get this you will see how true it is. The peace that comes from the state of openness is not a temporary experience it’s simply a state of “non-resistance” to experiences – this “peace” is not like your imagination of the temporary experience of a static peace.

The better word for this peace is “inner wholeness”, the state of inner wholeness is not like some experience of peace but it’s like an openness to allowing peace or activity (inner or outer movement) without resistance. So it’s not about trying to find peace but about coming to a place of true openness – a person who is trying to find peace will always feel disturbed, however a person who gets rooted in openness goes beyond the disturbing effect of the disturbance.

7.) Why is bliss deified as the highest feeling to achieve? Wouldn’t I get bored if bliss is all I had?

Bliss/joy/pleasure/fun is just one experience of life and all experiences are relative, which means that in order to experience bliss you also need to be aware of its opposite.

Since your very nature is rooted in the desire for experience, it naturally moves/vacillates between opposites – the light and the dark experiences. You can’t ever stop the desire for growth, for experience, and hence the idea of finding some permanent experience is unreal. You will naturally get bored of one experience if it lasts too long. It may seem very ordinary that our movement in life is driven by our nature of getting bored of “sameness” and yet this is the obvious truth.

Bliss only feels extra-ordinary to beings who are imbalanced, just like the prospect of eating food feels extra-ordinary to someone who has been starving for a few days – for someone who feels balanced the experience of bliss is not a big deal, just like how someone who is well-off doesn’t think too extra-ordinarily about food.

8.) Is there really any meaning to life, any end point to reach, any real destination to conquer? Or is life just about experiencing?

There is no purpose to life, it’s simply living its nature. There is no end-point because our very nature is to desire growth or new expression. We can define purposes by giving it some relative/higher meaning but it’s not important to do so, and it’s only needed when you have a sense of “narrow thinking” or delusion. If something feels right to you then follow it, but let go of this idea that it’s “the ultimate right”, it’s just what’s right for “you” in your current state of being.

In fact, you don’t have to feel good about something in order to do it, you can just do it because it’s needed from a place of wisdom – for example, it may not feel good to you to kill a lamb and yet you may do so to feed yourself and your family. To do what feels right (or what feels needed/required) and to do what feels good need not always be the same.

You don’t have to define a high and mighty purpose for yourself, you can just follow what feels like the required deal for you in your current reality in all its ordinariness. To want “experience” is the purpose of life but it’s not really a purpose it’s just a “nature”.

9.) Why is losing interest in material world (physicality) considered a “better” state to reach in spiritual circles?

You can always feel better through comparison but in reality there are no “better” states in life, there are just higher states of being in terms of evolution – also, higher does not always mean better, it just means higher in terms of a different level. “Better” is a relative term. Losing interest in the material world is not a “better” state to reach, it can just be a state of evolution, for you, as a being, where you no longer feel inclined towards the material realm (possibly temporarily). From this place you can decide to no longer incarnate into physicality but pursue your movement in the non-physical realm. This does not mean that you are “better” it just means you’ve choosen differently. From life’s perspective, nothing is better or worse, everything is a required experience – the feeling of being “better” is only an individual feeling created through comparison with others or with oneself (comparing yourself with how you were in the past).

Also, just because you’ve found higher awareness (or found inner wholeness) doesn’t mean that you will lose interest in physicality, in fact you can find a new interest in it – physicality is not a limited realm, it has infinite depth and infinite potential to explore, if you’ve lost interest in physicality it could just be a temporary deal. Also, there is a difference between “losing interest” and “fearing”, if you are afraid of physical living there is still an indirect interest which will keep you bound to it – to truly lose interest in physicality is a higher level of evolution in a being who has gone through all the physical experiences, and expressions, and thus no longer finds interest in it (this can easily take several thousand years of physical living). As a being you can have as much growth and enjoyment in physicality as in the non-physical realm, it just depends on your requirements for growth and desires.

Eventually you are bound to get bored of the “sameness” and will want a different experience, this does not mean that you are “better” than others who are still enjoying the thing that you are bored of, it just means that you’ve moved to a different level. I gave the analogy of life being like a “pac-man” game (in the post – A false sense of extra-ordinariness), when you are at level 10 you can look back at a person who is playing level 3 and feel that you are “better off”, and of course you are better-off than that person in terms of skills and expertise of playing pac-man, however you are also at level 10 which has challenges that match your skills at their equivalency so you are not really better-off except through a relative comparison with someone else who is at a lowel-level, if you compare yourself with someone who is playing level 14 you may not feel better-off and would simply feel a desire for growth towards that, just like how the level-3 person feels a desire to grow towards level 10 – the same nature is operating in all of us, all the time.

10.) Why are we taught to be “loving” instead of just allowing what we naturally feel, isn’t what we naturally feel the most authentic experience of the moment?

Commandments/directives are needed/required/necessary for beings who are at a lower level of maturity, who are not aware enough to make their own choices and hence need to be “directed” in some way. Directives, that come from the outside, are never going to feel totally natural to you, because they are not custom-made for you, they are just a general guide-line. Depending on your level of awareness, you may feel secure following some external directives or you may feel suffocated by them.

The teaching of “be loving” is one such directive, and it’s meant for people/beings who just need an external dictate to hold onto since they are not yet ready to sense their own inner wisdom, or to connect with their natural state of being. As a soul, when you grow in awareness, you will no longer be enticed by directives, rather you will naturally move towards independence and free-thinking. You will find that the dictate of “be loving” is flawed in its own way because you can’t just be loving towards everyone/everything unless you try to impose such a mindset on yourself.

Your very nature is rooted in seeking betterment which means that you have to dislike something, or see something as a lesser, in order to move higher – so “be loving” doesn’t fit in with your very nature. You can be loving towards a few things, but not towards everything, and what you love determines what you want to explore and what you dislike also determines what you would like to explore (in terms of changing it).

Also, as you grow deeper in maturity/awareness, you naturally let go of holding on to being influenced by emotions like love or hate, rather you function purely from an objective stand-point – what needs to be done, what wants to be explored, what feels required, what feels responsible etc. To just hold on to a dictate like “be loving” can severely block your ability towards connecting with your true personality as a being and thus block your natural expression and objective wisdom.

Maturity Vs Positive thinking

As you grow in maturity you are no longer attracted to notions of positive thinking simply because you don’t really see anything as being negative, you just see everything in its state of growth.

When you plant a seed it first grows into a sapling, it looks weak and vulnerable, would you call it “negative” or would you call it a phase in growth? This sampling slowly grows into a strong tree with deep roots, would you call it “positive” or would you call it a phase of growth? When you define something as positive you are bound to see something else as negative, and this perception is rooted in a certain narrowness, where you don’t see reality in its big picture or the whole picture.

When you see everything as a moment in growth there is no longer the need to label it as positive or negative, it’s just a phase of growth. There are no failures in life, there are just growth moments, there are no successes in life, there are just new platforms to grow – failure and success are both terms that have a tone of “finality” to them, and the truth of life is that there is no finality, there is no end-point.

When a certain event happens in your life, and you perceive it to be negative, just look within towards what’s the growth that it wants to invoke in you, if you truly don’t find something within you that needs to grow then look outside towards what’s the growth that you can assist in bringing forth – if you do feel that a growth is needed on the outside but don’t feel like you can do much about it, then just let it be, it’s not for you to do anything about it currently, however if you sense a requirement for inner growth then it’s totally your responsibility to stay committed to it until you bring it forth.

Be willing to see reality as it is, and allow what you feel quite naturally, without trying to impose a feeling or trying to follow a dictate – if you feel hatred allow that feeling instead of suppressing it by trying to follow some dictate about “being loving”. Of course, you don’t have to take action on spewing your hatred externally, you just have to allow the feeling “internally” without suppression. Your inner space is what needs to become open, only then can it become balanced, and it can only become open when you stop trying to suppress what you feel naturally.

I get the question quite often – “When you say allow the feelings, do I go ahead and allow myself to express it to people?” What’s required to be understood is that the state of allowing is an “inner work” where you work on your inner space, it’s not about trying to influence the space of others. The reality is that when you try to influence others, or when you express yourself to others, you also have to be open to their reaction (and there will always be a reaction of some form) and be willing to deal with the consequences. It’s best to express yourself, to the outside, from a place of inner balance so that the consequences are not imbalanced. When you express yourself from a place of inner imbalance you will naturally attract a response that amplifies or reflects that imbalance in some way. The state of allowing is totally an inner work towards finding inner balance, once you find this inner balance you have the right foundation for an expression that does not invoke imbalanced consequences.

In most cases the so-called “negative events” bring forth more maturity than the perceived positive events, this is because pain creates a stronger push towards evolution than pleasure until you reach a place where you don’t have to be pushed by pain rather you just have an objective wisdom to connect with the required growth without getting the hard knocks.

Psychological suffering is only present as long as there are elements of inner imbalance in a being, once you hit inner wholeness you don’t need the experience of psychological suffering, till then it can’t be avoided. Imbalance and suffering go hand in hand, and this suffering is the motivation towards finding balance. One has to remember, however, that a realm like physicality is created with a certain design, with physical bodies of a certain make-up, that actually allow for the experience of growth from being exposed to limitations and challenges of this realm – it’s like life creating a realm of limitations, and challenges, with the intention of having this “experience” of growth, simply because it’s the very nature of this life-energy, that we are, to want this experience of growth, it can’t be helped.

Once you truly get a sense of this nature, of desiring growth, in you, you will understand the logic of life, you will see that it does not have a purpose (positive or negative) it’s just satisfying its nature.




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20 Comments

  1. Reese

    Hey Sen, is it normal to feel like a total loser during this negativity release? I’ve harbored a lot of inferiority based thoughts before I started doing this, but they seem to really be roaring lately.

    I don’t try and fight them, because I am aware of why they’re there, even though they’re very powerful. I just hope they will go away soon, because my boring and annoying life is acting as fuel and “proof” for these thoughts.

  2. kenny

    awesome stuff man but I still have all this horrifying garbage that keeps coming up in my head endlessly. does it ever end?

  3. Lena

    Sen,
    I understand what you mean about being allowing of the dark nature of life, of the negative thoughts and feelings, etc. Since I have started doing this it has made tremendous difference in my life. Like you probably and many others, In the past I got fixated on having to be positive and feel positive all the time that when I didn’t feel that way I would get very down and my life became obsessed with looking for signs/reasons why I was not feeling positive all the time. This wasn’t a good state for me and have found it much easier, balanced and healthier to be allowing of all and stop resisting. So thank you 🙂
    That being said, i believe i am still in my phase of release. My question is this: does one just constantly stay as the neutral observer of both positive and negative? Or at some point do we start “milking” or “enjoying” the positives more? I mean the difference for me between enjoying a beautiful day on the beach with my loved ones or cleaning my toilet bowl are drastic (same as it is for thinking positive pleasant confident thoughts vs thoughts of self doubt fear and cynicism). I can be allowing and non resistant and accepting of cleaning my toilet or of thinking thoughts of self doubt and worry….and I can also be allowing and non resistant and not attached to a beautiful day on thebeach or when my mind is happy and present. But at some point shouldn’t I be enjoying and milking my experience on the beach more? Not only bc it feels better to be but also in an effort to attract more of those like experiences to myself? I just remember in a previous post you saying to milk and enjoy the mind when it’s being creative and allow and observe when it’s not. I just wonder when you start basking in the moments that are happy and when the mind is present; and then how we do that without getting attached. Is that ever a point that comes or do we just stay as the neutral observer indefinitely.

    Thank you again in advance for writing.

    Lena

  4. True One

    Thank you Sen for the great post.

  5. Markus

    Good post, I like your discussion of the questions about life.

  6. Andy

    I agree with Marcus, it’s a very good post. Actually I’ve recently become interested in self help topic and all this positive thinking stuff, but to be honest I can’t convince myself to buy any book. I’ve looked through some titles, I’ve read some previews and all of them sounded little superficial to me. Your post confirms my concerns.
    Looks like those positive-thinking authors use too many slogans, which sometimes appear to be illogical. How can anybody possibly be in love with everyone? I can’t imagine a person who just got beaten up on the street by a thug, and then say: “It’s not o.k but I love him”? Sorry, but I’m not buying that.
    The same holds true to suppressing the bad feelings. I know from my personal experience that no matter how hard you try it’s impossible. You can keep repeating ad nauseam that you not going to feel bad about something unfortunate happening and still it will not help. You’ll feel bad, period. If you feel like a looser and try not to feel that way it won’t help you because the experience tells you that: you lost the match, you haven’t found a well paid job, you have weak grades in school, you didn’t hook up with beautiful girl that you adore (your friend did instead) and so on….. Suppressing any feelings is in my opinion both irrational and waste of time.
    On the other hand I don’t think that negative feelings are natural for humans. Rather they are natural response of human brain to social conditioning. It just so happens that I have quite good memory of my childhood, but I can’t remember myself hating anyone and I can’t remember feeling sad, depressed or bored. I remember even better my daughter when she was little (she is now 13). She was never sad, bored (my God she could play with the same toys for hours and never wanted to go to sleep, because there was constantly something new and fascinating to do with them), and she was crying only when me and my wife finally had to force her to stop the play. You know Sen, believe or not, but it’s 3 a.m. now, and I’m after double shift in airport, but I got so hooked by your post, that I have to write before I go to bed and I’m not sleepy at all. Some people probably might say, that it’s obsessive compulsive, but some would probably say, that my brain is so interested in topic, and that I want to verbalize my thoughts now, before they are gone.
    I think that bad feelings are not natural, simply because they debilitate us, they make us refrain from doing what we want to do, or make us operate slower and less effective. When you take a closer and strictly logical look at a particular bad feeling it starts to appear somewhat illogical. Let’s say that you hate the thug who just beaten you up and took your wallet. You start hating him for that. Is this feeling going to turn back times? No. Is it going to make him a better person? For sure no (if he doesn’t know abt your feelings he won’t bother, if he knows somehow, he won’t bother or maybe even get happy, or alternatively he will begin to hate you). Is this feeling going to heal your bruises? No. Are you going to get your money back thanks to that feeling? No. Is he going to suffer thanks to that feeling of yours? No. He will walk away, happy that he got some money. Are you going to suffer even more if you feel hatred? Yes. Actually you are going to be the only one who suffers. By feeling hatred you truly adding the insult to injury. Please tell me, is there any way that you can benefit from hatred? Some would say, that you will learn valuable lesson: don’t go out after dark, cause you’ll get mugged. But if you seriously listen to that “wisdom” you’ll probably never go out after dark again, and then you will possibly get beaten up when the sun is still shining (it happens!). You know I’m quite convinced that you can logically talk yourself out of any bad feeling (but it doesn’t mean that this feeling won’t come back in future,). I think it’s worth trying, because bad feelings have a tendency to stay in brain and become permanent bad feelings. You hate this thug and then every time you hear or think about some thug you start feeling hatred even if nothing happened to you this time. And then again: is this feeling going to make the thug better person. No. And so on….. Your permanent feeling is not going to help either you or anybody else, it’s not going to change anything, apart from spoiling your mood for a short or long while – which is quite nasty especially when you are just about to have sex with beautiful woman :).
    Once again, great post. Thank you.

  7. Dashawn

    Hi Sen, first of all I wanna say thanks for all the articles
    you’ve posted so far. Some of them I read more than
    once, because I’ll see something the second or third
    time I didn’t see the first time. All of them inspire me
    so much. In my heart I know everything you’re
    saying is the truth for me. One thing that I have issues
    with are negating and insulting thoughts against myself.
    Now you say just allow them. But how how can I allow
    When are just insulting. Its like they are against me. And
    also at the same time how can I escape the pull of my mind
    it trys to stop these negative thoughts. If I need to allow
    Then how do I stop the mind from getting in the way.
    I also read in one your articles you said the mind is not
    the problem. So if the mind is not the problem then how
    do I allow it to try to fix itself eventhough I know
    that by fixing itself its just fighting negative thoughts
    with fear. It’s fueling negative thoughts, it’s aware of
    negative thoughts so it fights those thoughts. So I guess
    you could say I’m using the mind to fight itself. I read
    your post on relaxed awareness it made so much sense
    but my mind used the ideas out of that to stop negative thoughts
    How can I escape the pull of this viscous cycle. I know
    the mind will never be silent so how can I get outside of it.

    1. Sen Post author

      Dashawn, you may want to contemplate about what you feel about yourself, what are your thoughts about yourself – are you rooted in insecurities about yourself, are you constantly self-critical, do you constantly compare yourself with others, does your sense of self depend on how others see you?, these are some hard questions that one may not want to introspect honestly enough, it’s much easier to simply see the problem to be with the outside. The reason you attract insults could well be because you are insecure about yourself, and you have a strong tendency towards putting yourself down internally (self-loathing/self-criticism). I am not saying that you need to start thinking positive about yourself, I am just saying that you need to be aware of what’s going on within you, if there is a lot of self-loathing you need to get a sense of what’s the growth path that it’s calling you towards – self-criticism is sometimes just an indication of the fact that you are not willing to grow, that you are not staying true to your growth potential, and hence your very nature of growth is criticizing you. Sometimes the self-criticism can be misplaced, where you are being unreasonably judgmental towards yourself, in which case it’s simply a call towards connecting with yourself, becoming friendly towards yourself.

      It’s also possible that you are attracting insults because you are internally, or externally, being insulting towards others, where you are being harshly judgmental towards others (may be you don’t speak it out, but you may be holding these feelings/thoughts within you of resentment, bitterness and jealousy towards others). This would just be a symptom of a sense of inferiority, or even a sense of arrogance. It’s also possible that you are being insulted because you have a victim-mindset, where you are overly meek and timid, where you are disconnected with your sense of inner-power and thus allow people to walk all over you. The point here is that the externally induced experiences are always reflective, in some way, of an inner experience that you are indulging in. As long as you keep focusing on the outside as the source of problem you will not be able to introspect within yourself and hence won’t be able to make the required growth to allow for balance.

      The state of allowing is an openness to allow the free movement of what’s going on within you, your reactions, your emotional-momentum, your internal dialogues, your stories, your memories, your perspectives, your conditioning. This free movement is what allows your awareness to touch what’s going on within. If you are lost to the mind/emotional momentum there can’t be an open awareness of it, and if you are trying to suppress it then there can’t be awareness of it either. So the state of allowing is what’s needed to unearth all the imbalances within so that they can all be touched by the open space of your awareness (or what I call the space of being). The openness is all it takes for a balance to start happening within, and this balance brings out changes in your external behavior, your thoughts, your reactions and your personality per se. You cannot connect with this openness as long as you are playing the blame game or when you are trying to sort out the imbalances with the same imbalanced thinking that created it in the first place.

  8. Omar

    Well Written !
    I would like to hear from you on how to move from a state of inner imbalance to a state of inner wholeness . What doe the process involve ? whats the role of psychotherapy in that ? Meditation ? yoga ? eating habits ?
    Thanks again for a very helpful article

  9. Just curious...

    Sen,

    how did your thinking intensity changed when your mind momentum subsided and reached balance? Do you experience much less thoughts than when you were in an inbalanced state of mind? Is most of time mind just silent, without any thought in it? And just sometimes, when it’s needed, a balanced, fresh & creative thought appears?

  10. Wai

    Awesome post! I’ve just experienced this last weekend. I had this aversion arising within me and I tried to repress it because as a “religious” person I shouldn’t have those feelings. I despised myself and I felt like crap. Then I just decided to let this emotion to have its place. Then all of a sudden, I felt liberated. The aversion was still there but I felt free to do whatever I wanted. My whole being along with this aversion felt ecstatic. A moment later, the aversion dissipated on its own. It felt like I’ve absorbed the aversion instead of trying to push it out of myself. I started contemplating on this experience and reality seems to burst open and it makes so much more sense. It’s actually very similar to the meditation technique that I’ve using, but I never thought of using it in everyday life.

  11. nightowl

    Sen, I understand what you mean when you say ‘When you are at peace with life you are also at peace with not being peaceful.’ But I still wonder what the point is of extreme physical pain. I get that we feel physical pain to protect our bodies from harm, for example getting too close to a fire. But, and I ask this hypothetical question in all seriousness, why does it have to hurt so much?

    1. Sen Post author

      Nightowl, actually the body is intelligent enough to “shut-down” its nervous system in case of extreme pain. You will notice that people who meet with serious accidents, where they incur broken bones or severe injury, would tell you that they did not feel any pain during the injury. Actually, even your being is intelligent enough to let go of the body in case of extreme pain, in which case it’s just the body without the soul involved in the experience. I’ve had this experience of an accident, twice, where I did not feel any pain inspite of serious injuries, and it was only when the body started healing that I sensed the pain but even then it looked far worse than I felt. In life a lot of things look far worse than what the actual experience was, and you can’t know the actual experience unless you experience it personally otherwise you can only look and guess, and guesses are not always aligned with reality.

      In many cases, physical pain is the manifestation of emotional pain – for example, severe backpain, head-aches, etc have roots in an energy imbalance that happens at the emotional level (sometimes the emotional imbalances are inherited from your gene-pool). Eventually the pain is simply an indication of a healing that’s needed to rectify the imbalance, the healing would have to be done at the emotional level and sometimes it’s also required to be done at the physical level when it’s inevitable (like getting a surgery done).

      Some level of pain handling is required, that’s also an integral part of balancing with the dark nature. Some level of pain is a natural part of live, even the process of creation requires the tension/pain of energy movement as the non-physical energy condenses into physical. This pain can be handled in a state of openness, when you resist this pain it feels worse because now you are narrowing down the free-flow of energy. When you are in state of balance you don’t have to deal with intense pain, simply because you are no longer carrying a momentum of energy in you – you only have to deal with aspects of dark nature that arises on a moment to moment basis, which is easily manageable.

  12. Hi

    hi sen , this statement of your’s resonates soo much with what i experienced recently “In most cases the so-called “negative events” bring forth more maturity than the perceived positive events, this is because pain creates a stronger push towards evolution than pleasure until you reach a place where you don’t have to be pushed by pain rather you just have an objective wisdom to connect with the required growth without getting the hard knocks.”

    in my perception, initially i was very hurt when i found that my own people around me were deceiving me.. and i used to fight with lot of anger and would ask to make a fair justice.. i was feeling very upset and did not know what to do.. i just could not think about it, feeling helpless i just let go of the idea ‘to fix it with any further assurance’ and the question ‘why it could be soo….’after having facing the truth i realize ‘the dynamics’ with which it worked .. as i was condemned my energy’s started to close down and i was returning back to normal. Earlier as my energy’s were too much open, i felt insecure and was always scared to connect with people, i felt they would mistake me.. but that was the most fiery moment ever !! now i am thank full to those who triggered the pain in me.. so that i could let go of it… thanks to this blog which has bought soo much light.

  13. Michael

    I just found out I’ll have to pay about $2000 on my tax return this year. Of course I’m not too happy about this, but in the past I’d have been bloody irate. Today I don’t really care about it, my body isn’t all tense, I’m not in an angry mood – is this because of past momentum going away? I’m thinking of “I could attract more money somehow”, even though I don’t have any physical evidence for that, nor am I trying to force this belief upon myself.

  14. Ivan

    Hello Sen,
    Thank you very much for writing this article and the article How to Stop Obsessive Thoughts? They have helped me become more aware of what’s happening inside and finding balance in my life. I have also read many “self help” books, but often felt it very unnatural to think, feel, and be positive all of the time. Thank you for sharing your experience. Could you please offer some more examples of how you were able to surrender and stop being afraid of the negative?

    1. Jim

      Evan, can you please direct me to the article ‘How to Stop Obsessive Thoughts’ you have mentioned in your comment please.

  15. Joanna

    Great insight. I just wanted to add my 5 cents. Perhaps I always was oversimplifying the term “Positive Thinking” but to me this idea was more in relation to the fact that our brain by design does not understand word “no” or “don’t” . As an example if you tell your self NOT to think about the “blue monkey” the first thing that will come to your mind is “a blue monkey” 🙂 Well I guess, to me the trick is to pick what I want to think about instead not what I don’t want to think about. As a conclusion, on one hand the term to “separate the wheat from the chaff” gets a new meaning and on the second, if we learn how to “override” autopilot of our thoughts we could see what the teachings of not “sin in thoughts” means.
    Greetings to All.

  16. Natasha

    I love you!!!! I am so grateful to have found this website…

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