How to achieve your desires by giving up completely

This is the final part in a four-part series about the misunderstanding and misapplication of the Law of Attraction, which is prevalent in modern popular spiritual teaching. If you haven’t read the other parts, I recommend doing so before diving into this one. In part one I discussed the Law of Growth, and why we should always consider the spiritual impact of any attempts to manifest. In the second part, I discussed the need for consciousness in the manifesting process. In part three, I debunked the idea that the Law of Attraction is intended as some magic formula for material prosperity.

In the previous article, we finished with a quote from the great New Thought writer Thomas Troward, where he advised us to aim all our efforts towards a higher degree of spiritual development, rather than towards material gain. The material side of life should not be despised, he said, because the external is a symbol of the internal – but it is a by-product and not the overall aim. Bypassing all the internal growth – the wisdom, the knowledge, the true experience of peace and security and seeking only the external symbols – is attempting to short circuit the process. At best, such efforts are likely to give you flaky results. At worst, you may become proficient at dealing with spiritual forces, but lack the framework of true spiritual knowledge and virtue which is required to apply such forces safely and profitably.

In times of greater religious fervour, this latter scenario was known as sorcery – and was widely regarded as one of the most perilous paths to tread. Indeed, Troward in his book Bible Mystery and Bible Meaning, sees the flood of Noah as being a partly symbolic and partly historic event which was caused by the psychic plane becoming saturated with an abundance of competing mental forces, each seeking personal gain and being completely divorced from the harmonising spirit of growth and virtue. Even if you scoff at this interpretation as though it were a miniature Harlem witch trial, nevertheless the selfish abuse of spiritual powers has been consistently condemned by a variety of traditions throughout history. Attempting to harness spiritual powers for personal gain without the virtue that entitles us to it has been unanimously regarded as one of the most wicked paths a soul can tread. But seeking the virtue first and then enjoying whatever benefits arise, spiritual and material – well, such is the highest path of all!

Again, the material side of life should not be despised and many of the legitimate requests we make during our journey will be material ones – and that is where the Law of Attraction comes in.

Indeed, Jesus tells us in Matthew 7:7-8: “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.  For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”

But the more we concern ourselves with asking for spiritual advances and insights instead of material things, the more rapid and profound our progress will be. As our consciousness ascends and we receive true spiritual insights, then the full possibilities of Christ’s words will open up to us – when we are wise enough to understand and apply them correctly. If we are weighed down with our own plans and desires instead of united to the will of the Universe, we will create resistance and suffering.

Unfortunately, the promises of easy money and the apparent successes of the prominent Law of Attraction gurus have distorted our view of this. They tell us that when we encounter resistance, it’s a sign that we need to work on ourselves, or visualise more – or cease visualising altogether and let go – or a hundred other bits of contradictory advice designed to put us in the precise mental sweet spot that will enable limitless prosperity to flow into our lives on cue.

These techniques may indeed have worked for the people teaching them, and they may work for some people who apply them – particularly if that person’s life purpose is to learn the lessons associated with material prosperity. Of course, the underpinning law never changes, but people’s aptitudes and level of evolution varies wildly. Some people are capable of generating sufficient enthusiasm and effort in order to prosper materially, while others who are more spiritually advanced simply cannot muster the motivation, the frame of mind, or the correct mindset in order to make these techniques work with the aim of material gain.

There is a huge element of self-selection at work here. In other words, the most prominent Law of Attraction teachers tend to be people whose life purpose is highly biased towards the material – whereas the people with a higher spiritual purpose and more profound spiritual insight tend to be locked away in monasteries, or at least far less concerned with self-promotion.  Hence on the major sites like YouTube, the deeper spiritual advice tends to be drowned out by the New Gospel of Prosperity.  Again, manifesting material things is absolutely possible and permitted – but such things must take their proper place in the Universe’s grand scheme for our soul.

Sadly we humans are a stubborn lot, and prone to take the path of least resistance – so when we’re promised an easy way out of suffering, we will not give up the idea willingly, even after experiencing a string of failures.  So how do we make the shift from self-seeking materialism to spiritual aspirations? Well, the only thing that has worked for me is total surrender. And I must emphasise the ‘total’ part, because there is no such thing as a partial surrender. One simply can’t say “Okay God, I give up on striving for what I want – I surrender to you, now please give it to me.” That is no surrender at all; such a person is clinging to their desires just as much as ever. It reminds me of the old joke about Murphy’s Law – it is recursive: you can’t wash the car to make it rain. And you can’t give up on your desires to make them happen – you truly have to accept that they may not happen in this lifetime. Such a genuine surrender may take a form like the following:

“Oh Universal Spirit, I have struggled and striven to attain my desires, and they are as far away as they have ever been. They have caused me nothing but misery, and will continue to do so if I hold fast to them. But what is this life in the light of eternity? When we see it for what it truly is, it will be but one night in a bad motel. If my desires cannot be attained in this life, then perhaps in the next. Or perhaps they are not good for me and will never come true. Therefore, I let them go and make way for something better. May whatever is best in the light of eternal truth be done. Now I seek only you.”

This kind of prayer, when made with complete sincerity, has the effect of pressing the “reset” button on our desires. We accept that whatever silly things we thought we needed to make us happy may actually be harmful to us. We let all of that go, and resolve to instead seek nothing but whatever is best for us – knowing with full trust and certainly that the Universal Spirit can and will provide us with our ultimate good in due course.

As I discussed in a previous article on surrender, when we truly surrender to the divine will, it has a tendency to surrender to us. But I cannot say this enough – the key is to make a genuine surrender with no ulterior motive. You must fully accept that your desire may not come true, as indeed it may not.

If you say every word in the prayer above and mean it, you truly are letting go of your own desires and putting yourself at the mercy of a higher power. The inevitable outcome of such a surrender is that you will either get the thing you originally desired, or you will get something you never desired, but which is even better. If you have truly, deeply given it up and detached from it, then maybe you will get that ten bedroom mansion – but you won’t even care if you don’t. And it’s more likely that such extravagant desires won’t be fulfilled, but the inner peace and joy you will feel will make up for it many times over.

Many Law of Attraction teachers teach this same principle by stating that we need to remain neutral about our desires in order to attract them. But this de-spiritualises the process and turns it into a mechanical formula, whereas the neutrality you are seeking is a deep, complete trust and hope in whatever the Universe decides to send you – without the ulterior motive of attracting anything specific. We are seeking to become something, rather than to attract something.

Distilled down, this is the essential basis of all Christian, Taoist, Buddhist and Hindu teaching – we find true peace and happiness by raising our minds and hearts to higher states of virtue and purity. Seeking material prosperity as a means of happiness is a stark departure from centuries of consistent spiritual teaching. Of course, once we are in a higher state of vibration then material prosperity is easier to come by – but it won’t have the same chokehold over us as it once did.

So fill your day with thoughts of security, peace, love, fun, confidence, happiness, and any other spiritual influences you feel the need of. Note that I said spiritual influences – you want to feel the essence of the energy back of all your desires. So if you desire more money, for example, please don’t listen to those people who tell you to breathe in the scent of money or imagine counting out hundred dollar notes in your hands. No doubt this works for people who approach it with exactly the right mindset, but for the majority of people it will simply inflame more desire and cause more fruitless searching and book-buying when it doesn’t work as advertised. Instead, ask what you are really searching for through money. Is it security? If so, feel a deep sense of solid, grounded safety. Is it knowing that your needs will be taken care of? If so, feel a deep sense of providence and provision. Feel the truth of Christ’s words in Matthew 6:30-31:

“And if the grass of the field, which is today, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, God doth so clothe: how much more you, O ye of little faith? Be not concerned therefore, saying: What shall we eat, or what shall we drink, or wherewith shall we be clothed?”

Begin to truly feel all these energies. But here is the crucial part: feel them for no other reason than because they feel good, and place you in a positive frame of mind.

Please take a moment to understand this correctly. We are not doing this to attract anything into our lives. We are doing this to feel like a secure, peaceful person who is taken care of by providence. By incorporating these feelings into our daily life, we are creating a new framework – a spiritual reality – that is based upon thoughts and feelings of a high vibration, instead of the limiting, low vibrational thoughts and feelings that created our previous reality. By stepping into this new framework, we open the door to new and positive influences to be attracted into our life. But anything we may attract is merely the icing on the cake – we are seeking a positive spiritual framework for its own sake, and nothing else.

If all this is confusing, please read it again and meditate upon it until it begins to make sense. At first, this may seem like an impossible tightrope walk – trying to counteract the opposing forces of non-desire and achievement while remaining upright and poised. But the truth is so much simpler – give up the tightrope act altogether. Give up the desire, accept that your life is what it is and ask the Boss to show you the way. He’s only waiting for your surrender to give you a peace and a happiness far beyond what all those silly childish desires could ever give you.

Sydney Banks: The dream state is more real than our waking experience

Sydney Banks was a minimally educated Scottish labourer who, in the 1970s, had a spontaneous and inexplicable spiritual awakening. He truly was an enlightened man – a master wilfully reincarnated into a lowly station, no doubt – and shortly after his experience he quit his long term labouring job and, with no plan, embarked on his life’s work of spreading the truth about the nature of reality. He founded the Three Principles philosophy and spent the remainder of his life lecturing. He repeatedly taught that enlightenment could not be communicated through words – because words are form, and enlightenment entails understanding the true spiritual reality, which exists before form came into being. It is formless. That is why in the below quote, he says that the problems of the universe can be solved “only from here” – that is, only from within.

I found his words about the dream state being more real than the waking state to be particularly striking. With only a superficial understanding of their meaning, the words may sound like a vacuous Instagram quote – but with a deeper understanding, they become powerful fuel for meditation. With a true spiritual understanding, they contain the essence of all there is to be known about the true nature of life. This is one of my favourite sections from all of Banks’ lectures. Its true meaning will reveal itself with multiple readings, and some meditation.

Read on for the enlightened words of a truly humble, generous man – a true master, Sydney Banks:

“What everybody searches for lies within their own self. It’s an identity that you’ve lost. That’s what it is – it’s an identity that you’ve lost. It’s you – you’re lost. Not you the body; not you the little mind; but the energy – the true you – the true self. That thing that lies inside is a spiritual reality that lies within. And if you can see past what you see now and look within, and find a spiritual reality then the reality that you now see changes. Because the reality that you now see is the illusion – it is a dream. It’s called life. And it’s perfect. It’s a perfect dream. And nothing in this dream can be wrong. Nothing. It only appears wrong to the mind because only from the mind are there wrongs. And it’s the same mind that has created the life that we now see. It’s the creator of its own fear; but if you look within, there’s a greater creation. There’s the very essence of life. There inside you lies the place of the space where the dream is dreamt. And all you have to do is wake up. It’s like when you’re having a nightmare – and it’s real. You feel the pain. You feel the fear. You feel the hate. You feel everything in the nightmare – and it’s true. What you see is true; it really is – it’s as true in that reality as it is now. As a matter of fact, in the dream state, you are closer to the true reality of life than you are when you’re awake focusing only from your mind. But if you’re having a nightmare and you wake up, you know the feeling – you say ‘thank God it was just a nightmare.’ And this is the same as waking up spiritually. You start to wake up. The second you see your first spiritual fact – your Christ consciousness is touched. And at that second, that is when you start to wake up. And if you ever truly wake up, you’ll wake up from the nightmare to the beautiful, absolute truth of the inner self – the oneness; the realisation that all things are one single divine thought, broken up into pieces via Christ conscious states and the illusion of mankind. We have forgotten how to wake up to see what is instead of what isn’t. Because what we see really – really – isn’t real. The true reality lies within. And if you can go within, from here – and only from here – only from here can the troubles and the problems of the universe be solved.”

How misusing the Law of Attraction creates suffering

This is part 3 of a series discussing some of the misconceptions about the Law of Attraction which have been caused by the explosion of publicity it has received in the wake of the movie The Secret.

In part one I discussed the Law of Growth, and why we should always consider the spiritual impact of any attempts to manifest. In the second part, I discussed the need for consciousness in the manifesting process.  In this third part of the present series I will discuss what I believe to be the true meaning and purpose of the Law of Attraction, as distinguished from the magic formula for material gain that it has become through modern popular teaching.

Let me begin by stating that although I find certain core tenets of Buddhism hard to swallow, I cannot find one word to argue against the Buddha’s core teaching that desire results in suffering. Contentment equals having everything we want; while its opposite – desire – always implies that something is missing. The same principle is stated in verse 20 of the Tao Te Ching, where Lao Tzu teaches non-striving as the way to contentment. Similar teachings are repeated elsewhere in the Tao.

Therefore, the whole Law of Attraction premise would seem to be flawed from the very outset. It’s based on an egoistic concept of happiness that says “you are unhappy because you do not have what you want. Let me show you the way to get what you want.” If the process happens to succeed, the ego will simply ask for more – because attaining some material success will not change our mindset and the energetic pattern created by our mindset. The moment you create a specific worldly goal, you are energetically saying “I am here, but I wish I were there.” The implication of the energetic message is: “I need to be there to be happy. Here is not good enough. Being here is the cause of my unhappiness.”  I am loathe to even say it, because it’s one of those oft-repeated yet rarely appreciated truths that sounds like little more than a slogan on a motivational poster, but here it is, in all its apparent triteness: happiness comes from within.

Unfortunately, we all empathise with Ashleigh Brilliant’s famous quote about money (sometimes falsely attributed to Spike Milligan): “All I want is a chance to prove that money can’t make me happy.” We think we can be the single exception to the rule. Others aren’t happy because they’re using their money foolishly, we say. I would use it wisely, or for purposeful pursuits. Or we pin medals on our chest by saying we’d use it to do good in the world. Despite all our fantasies, no-one has ever found lasting happiness through money per se. When Sylvester Stallone was asked by an Australian TV show whether money and fame had brought him happiness, he answered:

“Well, you can afford a better grade of psychiatrist – that’s about it. No, I mean money certainly gives you a chance to be independent, but it doesn’t buy happiness at all. No it doesn’t.”

His reference to independence may set off another train of thought within us – “that’s all I really want – independence. I want to be free from my mind-numbing 9-5 job, or free to move away from my irritating housemate. If I had a source of easy income, I’d be free to dedicate more time to work on myself and develop my spirituality.”  Again, it is one of those ideas that seems so true in our imagination, but is immediately disproven when it is tried. Removing ourselves from noxious influences can help, but if we do not remove the real source of the influences then we will simply attract more.  Furthermore, if we are unhappy working a 9-5 job, we will be unhappy without one. There are some advantages, for sure – but there are disadvantages in equal measure. I can assure you from personal experience that if you quit your 9-5 job before you’ve developed your true spiritual understanding and calling, your life will not improve one bit. You may be free from certain irritations like early starts and team meetings, but other difficulties like loneliness, isolation, lack of direction and frustration with your spiritual state will arise to take their place.

Your ego may argue with this and remind you how great your last overseas holiday was. What if you could live that way all the time? It may remind you how great it was for the first week after you quit your job – and how peaceful it made you feel when the pressure was released. It may remind you of the first few months of being in love. If we could only grab hold of those fleeting pleasures and make them last, it says! Of course, we can’t – a change in circumstance only ever makes a temporary change in our happiness.

You simply cannot find that magical place called ‘ease’ and attempt to use it as a base camp from which to live the rest of your life and develop yourself spiritually. Not only is it energetically impossible, but it is not what we’re here to do. Reaching a state of ease through material security and nothing else would put us a state of stagnation. We came here to evolve, and to ultimately manifest the Uncreated Formless in created form. That doesn’t mean our lives are fated to be hard, but if our dominant thought pattern and its resulting energetic signal is one of discontent, the result can never be different – although we artificially change the circumstances around us.

I stated just before that no-one has ever found happiness through money per se. However, some rare individuals have found meaning after having money, and this meaning has led to their happiness. A still smaller number have found spiritual peace after having money. But these people are the rare exception – the vast majority of people who pursue money first, either fail to attain it or get ensnared by it.  I mention this only because if I don’t, someone will pull out the rare example of a person who made millions on the stock market, then gave it all up to become a yogi hermit.  Please don’t assume that the very rare exceptions disprove the whole premise.  The only course of action that will infallibly lead to true peace and happiness is the one Jesus gives to us in Matthew 6:33: “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and all other things shall be yours without the asking.”

I said that artificially changing the circumstances will not make a discontented person happy, and the opposite is true too – a change of circumstances will not make a truly contented person unhappy. There have been truly enlightened souls who have retained their happiness in prison, because happiness comes from within. We need not look for examples of this – we know it to be true, because many people on the highest spiritual paths voluntarily choose to “imprison” themselves in monasteries or even hermitages.  The outward circumstances simply do not matter, and have no correlation to our happiness or unhappiness. So let us begin any analysis of the Law of Attraction with the assumption that its true purpose is not for us to attract wealth and status into our lives in order to create our dream lives and attain happiness.

In fact, I don’t even agree with the term “Law of Attraction” – it implies that we are striving to pull something we do not have into our reality. But the law simply does not work when we strive to attain something. It only works when we are something. It is much easier to understand if it is referred to as the Law of Resonance. What we are will grow and increase, because our energy is resonating with it. What we are not will never come to us. Standing at point A and attempting to attract things from point B will never work – you are resonating with point A, and what you resonate with is what creates your reality.

All of us will pass through a phase of evolution where our goals and our achievements are based primarily on worldly gain – whether it be attainment of power, wealth, fame or all three. Such people do not need to strive to attain anything – by virtue of their present state of evolution, they are already are the kind of people that will succeed in worldly affairs. They are already being successful people. They are already at point B from the moment they’re born, if you like. They do not need to fight deeply against themselves to muster up the motivation to achieve worldly things. By the very fact that they are at point B, they are resonating with worldly achievement, and thus worldly achievement flows naturally to them.

The great mistake that modern Law of Attraction teaching makes is to try and teach people at different stages of evolution how to get to point B. Thus, the young soul which has not evolved beyond money discovers something about the spiritual workings of the universe, buys his first Ferrari, then jumps on YouTube and attempts to teach everyone else how easy it is for them to do the same. But the audience may be at point C or point D already. Attempting to take them back to point B is just going to contravene the Law of Growth and create resistant energy. We’ve all felt the disappointment, the struggle for control of our thoughts and feelings – the painful struggle that ensues when we try to change ourselves into something we’re not. The Law of Attraction teacher will tell you that you’re getting there, and you just need to persist, or try harder, or buy their book to create the right mindset where abundance and success can flourish. But your soul will tell you you’ve been there already. Now is the time for something greater. A bitter truth for our ego, which seems to steadfastly refuse to acknowledge the truth that external circumstances cannot make us permanently happy.

Some will argue that feeling resistance over our attempts to attract money is purely a sign that we need to clear our past traumas and money blocks. Perhaps that is so – but what does the clearing process entail, anyway? Does it entail years of releasing trapped emotions and energetic saboteur patterns? Years of tapping on meridian points to clear old traumas? Years of positive affirmations, and clearing of the negative patterns that sabotage those affirmations? It’s possible to go through all of this healing and more, and come out a great deal the worse for it, because you’re taking on the vibration of someone who is broken and needs fixing.  On the other hand, if everything goes right, the soul is then free to easily attract their millions and discover for themselves how much it will not bring them happiness. Success at last! But it wasn’t quite as easy or as fulfilling as YouTube made it out to be, was it?  Thus, a soul which may have been destined for higher things gets sucked back into the money trap. Instead of clearing its energetic baggage by raising its consciousness through spiritual practices, it gets to a certain stage of spiritual power through artificial means, and doesn’t know the true use for the power.

Even Neville Goddard – historically one of the great Law of Attraction teachers – eventually moved on to a deeper spiritual phase of his career. This chapter of his life has been all but forgotten, since his Law of Attraction lectures and books hold far more mass appeal – but Goddard eventually declared that the Law of Attraction was merely one phase in the process of spiritual development. A spiritual bait and switch, if you like – to turn our minds heavenward and then bring us to something greater, which he called “the promise.”

So what is the true use for the power of spiritual attraction? Let me answer it by quoting a far greater mind than my own. Genevieve Behrand, student of the great New Thought writer Thomas Troward, imagines a conversation between herself and Troward, in her book Attaining Your Desires. She asks him the following question:

“Then one’s efforts should be wholly directed to the attainment of a higher degree of intelligence, rather than to the acquiring of material things?”

Note that intelligence was the word Troward used to indicate a soul’s level of evolution. He answers:

“Such a purpose is the very highest, and aspirations along this line would surely externalise corresponding things. Under no circumstances should you allow yourself to form the habit of idle dreaming. The material side of life should not be despised, for it is the outside of a corresponding inside, and has its place. The thing to guard against is the acquiring of material possessions as your ultimate aim. However, when certain external facts appear in the circle of your life, you should work with them diligently and with common sense. Remember that things are symbols, and that the thing symbolised is more important than the symbol itself. ‘God will provide the food, but He will not cook the dinner.’

Pupil: My part then is to cook the dinner, so to speak; to use the intelligence with which I have been endowed, by making it a power to attract, from out the universe, ideas that will provide for me in any direction that I may choose to go, according to law?

Sage: Yes, if you choose to go with life’s continual, harmonious movement, you will find that the more you use the law of harmony through progressive thinking, the more intimately acquainted you will become with the law of reciprocity. This law corresponds to the same principles which govern physical science; that is, ‘nature obeys you precisely in the same degree as you obey nature.’ This knowledge always leads to liberty.

Pupil: How does nature obey me?

Sage: Nature’s first and greatest law is harmony. You see the results of harmonious law in the beautiful world around you. If you obey nature’s suggestion, and follow the law you will be the recipient of all the benefits contained in this law of harmony that nature has to offer, such as health, strength, contentment, etc., for all of her laws bring freedom and harmony. You will find nature responding along the same lines, to the extent that your thoughts and acts are in accordance with her perfect laws.”

To distil it all down – the true purpose of the Law of Attraction is to bring ourselves into perfect resonance with life itself. To make our every thought, word and deed resonate with life and love.  When we attain this, we experience a deep, lasting happiness and peace that a change in material circumstances can never take away from us. We experience health, love and happiness. We desire nothing, yet seem to have everything; and necessary favours are granted almost before we ask for them. In short, we attain heaven on earth.  Says Sydney Banks: “The Kingdom of Heaven is a state of consciousness.”  Says Christ: “For lo, the kingdom of God is within you.” Luke 17:21.

I will conclude this series in part four with some final thoughts on how to put this all together through non-striving and surrender.

What is spiritual bypassing? Does it really exist?

Spiritual bypassing is a term used by people who advocate shadow work, to describe the act of attempting to paper over our gaping emotional wounds by means of a pretty, vague sense of outward spirituality. It certainly does exist, but sometimes the term gets used inappropriately, as I’ll explain in a moment.

If you’ve been around enough spiritual people, you’ve probably met some good examples of true spiritual bypassing. These are the people who post inspiring quotes on their Pinterest and Facebook pages, make frequent reference to the wisdom of the universe, carry crystals with them and perhaps read the occasional spiritual book recommended by Oprah, but never make any serious attempts to grow. They never set aside dedicated time for spiritual practices, never pursue any one spiritual practice with any tenacity, and never undertake any serious self-examination.

In short, they’ve adopted spirituality as a facade – an identity, and nothing more – and they expect their lives to improve simply by giving emotional assent to some vague higher power. This is true spiritual bypassing, or as I prefer to call it – fake spirituality.

Unfortunately, as it is a term primarily used by shadow work advocates, sometimes the definition gets broadened to include everyone who does not believe it is necessary or helpful to probe around in the past in order to find answers in the present. People who believe that negative thoughts, feelings and patterns can be changed and released without excessive analysis or acknowledgement of them.

Shadow work advocates claim that all emotions have a meaning and purpose, and if we don’t understand the purpose then we’ve missed the lesson. Even if we clear the emotion or change the thought, if the original cause of the thought or feeling remains then it will simply reassert itself in a different form. And the longer it’s repressed, the more malignant it becomes, they claim.

Study the teachings of Christ, Buddha and Lao-Tzu and you will find that all of these sages belong to the former school of thought. Nowhere in any of the Christian, Buddhist or Taoist philosophies is probing into the past recommended as a legitimate form of self-analysis. Nowhere in the Hindu-Yogic tradition is this recommended, either. In fact I’m not aware of any traditional school of spirituality that recommends this. Thoughts and feelings are just energy – but because they create our reality, sometimes we mistake them for reality itself. The true nature of our existence is absolute perfection, but because we were given the creative faculty of free will, it is possible for us to misuse that free will and create problems and suffering for ourselves.

If we truly dedicate ourselves to a particular spiritual path with devotion, persistence and realistic expectations, in time our consciousness will ascend to a state where negative energetic residue like traumas and trapped emotions begin to clear from the body automatically. The only thing that caused this negative emotional baggage in the first place was the misuse of our thought, not some complicated emotional damage that requires analysis and drawn-out healing. Even traumas are ultimately caused by our conscious misapprehension of a particular experience as being a threat to our safety. As our consciousness ascends, these thought systems begin to rewire themselves and become more healthy, also. Hence, a higher level of consciousness is a remedy for both the effects and the causes of our emotional baggage.

In addition to following a dedicated spiritual practice, it is also possible to use energetic techniques like EFT, The Emotion Code, The Body Code, The Sedona Method and so on in order to compel the body to clear trapped energetic residue. As we let go of these lower energies, we assist ourselves into a higher state of consciousness, and as our consciousness ascends, more of the lower energies automatically clear – so the process is reciprocal. Shadows simply cannot exist when exposed to the light.

The great enlightened lecturer, Sydney Banks, founder of the Three Principles philosophy – the “sage of the common people” as I like to think of him – described it thus:

“When illusionary sadness comes from memories, you don’t try and figure them out – please don’t try and do that. You’ll get yourself in trouble. All you have to do is simplicity again – is realise that it’s thought. The second you realise it’s thought, it’s gone. You’re back to the now, you’re back to happiness. So don’t get caught up in a lot of details.”

Of course, Banks is here referring to a deep spiritual understanding of the roles of mind, consciousness and thought – not the superficial intellectual understanding that most of us have of these matters. Only a deep spiritual knowing, of the kind that Banks himself possessed, has the power to instantly liberate us from all problems. The attainment of this deep knowing has been the object of all significant spiritual teaching throughout the centuries. Cultivate a true, enlightened understanding of the way things really are, and all your problems will vanish as shadows exposed to the light. The idea that we ought to examine the shadows instead of simply turning on the light is a by-product of 20th century psychotherapy, which has no spiritual precedent.

Proponents of shadow work sometimes like to claim that following the orthodox spiritual path of seeking enlightenment is attempting to find a shortcut to freedom. We’re ever searching for that elusive magic thought that will open up our spiritual understanding and collapse all our problems in an instant. That’s too simple, they claim, and the only path to freedom is to put in the effort and do the dirty work down at the coalface of our subconscious; understanding what made us the way we are and healing each individual hurt. On the question of impatience, I’ve often found the opposite to be true, though – that is, if someone is deeply hurting now, it can be very tempting to attack the problem directly by trying to understand and heal the causes – whereas searching for a comprehensive liberation from all suffering is often too vague, distant and elusive for the impatient. But note, of course, that the process of earnestly seeking enlightenment almost always leads to a measurable increase in a person’s consciousness and a corresponding decrease in suffering – so even if we never reach the enlightenment threshold, our search is certainly not wasted effort.

Many people who have experienced Reconnective Healing will tell you that their lives changed for the better overnight, due to the massive jump in consciousness caused by the healing. Things that previously bothered them no longer did, and they viewed life with an entirely different perspective. For many of them, the changes are permanent or at least long-lasting. For a few, however, things return to their usual negative state within a few days or weeks after the healing. This is not because the healing energy is in any way deficient – it’s because, unfortunately, they allowed their pesky thoughts to get in the way again. We’ve been told for such a long time that we’re broken, and the only way to return to wholeness is through an arduous process of self-examination and repair. The more deeply this lie has permeated our consciousness, the harder it is to accept that healing could be so simple. Consciously or unconsciously, such people will tell themselves “this is too good to be true…It can’t last!”

Our true nature is one of complete perfection and harmony, and Reconnective Healing – being the unfiltered source energy of the universe – simply allows us to get back to that state. But if we tell ourselves it’s too good to be true – that we need to struggle through the murky depths of our childhood and our programming in order to liberate ourselves permanently – then our thoughts will come true, since they are our creative faculty.

Understanding the programming may actually provide some relief from it for certain individuals – so by all means, if shadow work helps you then it may be a legitimate part of your spiritual journey. It is not something I can ever proactively recommend, but it is not up to me to direct your spiritual path for you. But please realise that identifying with your programming is not the road to enlightenment, and people who choose to walk the higher path of dissociating with their programming and embracing the higher truths of our eternal, perfect existence are not “spiritually bypassing” by doing so.

Thomas Troward on how the law of attraction works

I’m half way through an extraordinary book by the seminal New Thought philosopher Thomas Troward, called The Edinburgh Lectures on Mental Science.  I’m recording the entire thing as an audiobook for free download, but for the moment I’ll be content to share some snippets.  Here’s one from chapter 8, titled The Reciprocal Action of the Universal and Individual Minds.  The Universal Mind is, of course, Troward’s term for God, the Universe, the source energy, whatever you care to call it.  Troward here explains the mechanics of the creative process of the individual mind when it impresses its will upon the blank slate of the Universal Mind – i.e. the Law of Attraction:

“It is for this reason that I lay so much stress on the combination of two apparent opposites in the Universal Mind, the union of intelligence with impersonality. The intelligence not only enables it to receive the impress of our thought, but also causes it to devise exactly the right means for bringing it into accomplishment. This is only the logical result of the hypothesis that we are dealing with infinite Intelligence which is also infinite Life. Life means Power, and infinite life therefore means limitless power; and limitless power moved by limitless intelligence cannot be conceived of as ever stopping short of the accomplishment of its object; therefore, given the intention on the part of the Universal Mind, there can be no doubt as to its ultimate accomplishment. Then comes the question of intention. How do we know what the intention of the Universal Mind may be? Here comes in the element of impersonality.  It has no intention, because it is impersonal. As I have already said, the Universal mind works by a law of averages for the advancement of the race, and is in no way concerned with the particular wishes of the individual. If his wishes are in line with the forward movement of the everlasting principle, there is nowhere in Nature any power to restrict him in their fulfillment. If they are opposed to the general forward movement, then they will bring him into collision with it, and it will crush him. From the relation between them it results that the same principle which shows itself in the individual mind as Will, becomes in the universal mind a Law of Tendency; and the direction of this tendency must always be to life-givingness, because the universal mind is the undifferentiated Life-spirit of the universe. Therefore in every case the test is whether our particular intention is in this same lifeward direction: and if it is, then we may be absolutely certain that there is no intention on the part of the Universal Mind to thwart the intention of our own individual mind; we are dealing with a purely impersonal force, and it will no more oppose us by specific plans of its own than will steam or electricity. Combining then, these two aspects of the Universal Mind, its utter impersonality and its perfect intelligence, we find precisely the sort of natural force we are in want of, something which will undertake whatever we put into its hands without asking questions or bargaining for terms, and which, having undertaken our business, will bring to bear on it an intelligence to which the united knowledge of the whole human race is as nothing, and a power equal to this intelligence.

I may be using a rough and ready mode of expression, but my object is to bring home to the student the nature of the power he can employ and the method of employing it, and I may therefore state the whole position thus:—Your object is not to run the whole cosmos, but to draw particular benefits, physical, mental, moral, or financial into your own or someone else’s life. From this individual point of view the universal creative power has no mind of its own, and therefore you can make up its mind for it. When its mind is thus made up for it, it never abrogates its place as the creative power, but at once sets to work to carry out the purpose for which it has thus been concentrated; and unless this concentration is dissipated by the same agency (yourself) which first produced it, it will work on by the law of growth to complete manifestation on the outward plane.

In dealing with this great impersonal intelligence, we are dealing with the infinite, and we must fully realize infinitude as that which touches all points, and if it does, there should be no difficulty in understanding that this intelligence can draw together the means requisite for its purpose even from the ends of the world; and therefore, realizing the Law according to which the result can be produced, we must resolutely put aside all questioning as to the specific means which will be employed in any case. To question this is to sow that very seed of doubt which it is our first object to eradicate, and our intellectual endeavour should therefore be directed, not to the attempt to foretell the various secondary causes which will eventually combine to produce the desired result, laying down beforehand what particular causes should be necessary, and from what quarter they should come; but we should direct our intellectual endeavour to seeing more clearly the rationale of the general law by which trains of secondary causes are set in motion.”

As a Man Thinketh by James Allen – Free Complete Audiobook

James Allen’s classic 1903 book As a Man Thinketh is regarded by many as one of the greatest self-help books of all time. At under 50 pages, it is a short read – but do not underestimate the power and wisdom contained herein. Unlike modern authors whose books are often filled with fluff and padding, every page in Allen’s work rings with simple, eloquent wisdom. It is a book that can be read multiple times, and new depths of understanding drawn from every subsequent reading.

Many people profess to believe in the power of thought to shape our realities, but lack a thorough understanding of the consequences of this truth. Absorbing the full meaning of Allen’s words, meditating upon them, and conforming our thoughts and actions to his advice will have profound and rapid effects on our reality. This is not a volume to be read blithely but rather a rich trove of wisdom to be deeply considered and integrated into our lives.  This is a brand new recording read by myself – you’re welcome!

Download As a Man Thinketh – James Allen (23.3 MB)

Contents
1. Introduction/Thought and Character
2. Effect of Thought on Circumstances
3. Effect of Thought on Health and the Body
4. Thought and Purpose
5. The Thought Factor in Achievement
6. Visions and Ideals
7. Serenity

If this is your first visit to the site, take a look at my distance healing sessions!

 

Ask this one simple question to find your life’s true purpose

I think most people in the world, and almost certainly anyone who would be reading this kind of blog would be at least vaguely aware that they came into this world with a purpose. There’s a reason why we’re here; it’s not random and meaningless. There is something we came here to do. Yet despite this realisation, it’s amazing how little thought people tend to give it. Often it’s a vague idea rattling around in the back of our mind, rather than the all-consuming quest it perhaps ought to be.

When you finally do give it the thought and the attention it deserves, your life can really make a U-turn and start heading in a much better direction just by getting clear on precisely what you’re here for. So here’s a really simple question to help determine your life’s true purpose, which I first heard from the self-help guru Tony Litster. If you made all the money in the world – billions upon billions so that there was nothing on earth you want that’s beyond your means, and you received all the recognition and accolades it was possible to receive – so, you became the world’s most famous person. You won Oscars, Grammys, Nobel Prizes, BAFTAs, Tonys, Logies, you hit the winning runs for England in the World Cup and became the first person on Mars – if you achieved all of that, then what would you do with your life?

OK, that was my own rather more colourful rendition of Tony’s question. At any rate, if you made all the money it was possible to make, and gained all the fame and recognition it was possible to gain, then what next?

Good question, isn’t it? Once we take our baser desires and our ego out of the equation, then we’re left with something a bit deeper, something that really gives us greater meaning than the ego can ever provide. And that’s what we’re looking for here – a purpose based meaning to our life, rather than an ego based meaning. So if you came up with something like “I’d sit on the beach all day”, or “I’d party all night”, you might want to try and think in slightly deeper terms about it to see what actually gives you true meaning beyond comfort and physical indulgence. Indulging yourself constantly is fun for a while, but it’s always a dangerous path to go down. It’s a path of diminishing returns where you tend to become hungrier and hungrier for more indulgence as you get bored of the things that you’ve already got. The higher road avoids that trap and focuses on the things that will give our soul satisfaction, not just our body.

Many of you who just asked yourselves the above question will know instantly what you really wish you were doing. Others may have to think about it for a while and even ask for some answers. If you’re in the latter category, ask persistently and eventually it cannot fail to come to you. You did not come here with no purpose, and it stands to reason that such a purpose must be discernible. Once you’re clear on your purpose, then ask yourself the further question: if you’re not fulfilling it, why not? If this is truly your life’s purpose, then this is the one thing you’re here to do, right? So why aren’t you doing it?

This second question has a tendency to infuriate people, as though I were suggesting that fulfillment of purpose is just a click of the fingers away. Of course that isn’t the case – but again, we know we came here with a purpose. We know that purpose must be discernible, and we know it must be possible. Any one of these three being untrue would make our entire sojourn on this planet supremely pointless. But it would be equally pointless to come here with a life purpose that’s too easy to fulfill. There must be certain challenges involved in fulfilling the purpose, or we wouldn’t learn and evolve from it. The trouble is, most people shrink from their purpose before they’ve even faced the first challenge – simply knowing that challenges are there makes them give up the fight before they’ve begun.

The other excuse your ego might throw up in your face is that there’s no money in your life’s purpose. In which case I’d ask you again, did you really come here with a life’s purpose that’s impossible to fulfill? You might have to get thinking and you might have to ask for some answers and some inspiration, but if it really is your life’s purpose, then it’s simply impossible that there won’t be a way. The people who succeed in their purpose are the people who go searching for answers, and who forge a path for themselves. The people who fail are the ones who give up when the path is not immediately obvious or easy to access. But if you go through life following only the path of least resistance, you’re going to end up living a fairly unengaging life, and not one that’s filled with a tremendous amount of purpose. Worse still, if this purpose is essential to your spiritual evolution then you might have to come back here again to give it another try.

It gets cited so often that it sounds like a cliche and fails to move us, but the lesson of Edison’s light globe is still potent. Edison made something like 900 attempts to invent the light globe before he finally succeed. And when he was later asked about the process he said that after each aborted attempt, he didn’t feel like he’d failed – he just felt like he’d discovered one more way not to invent the light globe. The Edisons of the world are the people who succeed – the people who will not take no for answer.

On the other hand, I don’t think it pays to romanticise failure and struggle either. Some videos and motivational speakers love to do that – they make out that you have to live out a thankless struggle and overcome a seemingly endless series of failures before you finally succeed. It doesn’t have to be like that, either – it’s just a case of being persistent, never giving up, having the end clearly pictured in your mind and being confident that you will succeed eventually. If you have your true life’s purpose in mind and you do all of those things persistently, you cannot possibly fail – remember that and keep it clearly in your mind.

Remember too that in this period of history, we have unprecedented opportunities available to us – opportunities for wealth or achievement or experience that very, very few of us had access to in days past. One major reason why so many people fail to make use of these opportunities is that we also have unprecedented levels of distraction, and it’s much easier to just take the path of least resistance and live a life of ease and comfort. How many people spend virtually all their free time by distracting themselves? Whether it’s through TV, Netflix, alcohol, video games, porn or YouTube – if all your free time is being poured down these drains of distraction – nay, addiction in many cases – what sort of a life can you expect to live? Probably a reasonably comfortable and easy one, but also one that’s probably lacking any real purpose or direction. I know that’s the kind of life that I was living for many years – but once I actually asked the question about my life’s purpose and really understood that I’m here to fulfill that, not just to indulge myself, it was a huge, huge wake-up call. Perhaps it will be a major fork in the road for you, too.

In 10, 20 or 30 years time you might look back at today and mark it as being the day that you began to live on purpose instead of just living for comfort and ease. I hope so, because you don’t want to look back on your life in 30 years time and say “where did all the years go? And what have I got to show for it?” I had that kind of revelation myself, mercifully in my 30s. But it was hard to comprehend where the past ten years had gone, and why I had achieved virtually nothing in such a significant chunk of my life. It wasn’t nice, believe me. But whatever age you are, there’s still time to turn it around. Ask the question, and get clear on what you’re aiming towards. Write it down. Refer to it often. Visualise it.

Once you’re clear on your purpose you may then need to break through your mind’s resistance. When all your excuses show up, write them all down and then answer them rationally. When your brain says “it’s too hard!” You answer “nothing good comes cheaply, but we can do it.” When your brain says “there’s no money in that” you say “there is money, we just have to find it”. When your brain says “I’m too old” you say “better late than never!” When your brain says “That’s for other, lucky people, not us – let’s just get drunk and watch TV, it’s so much easier” – visualise where that attitude will get you in 10, 20 or 30 years time – then visualise what putting in a small amount of purpose-based effort now could do for you in that same amount of time.

Whatever the objections are, write them all down and answer them with truth. If you don’t have all the answers yet, think about it and ask for answers. Ask for inspiration. Then take action, believe, be confident and never give up. If it really is your purpose, you can’t possibly fail. Don’t delay – let this be the day your true life quest begins.

Turn off the news and turn on your life

One of the most commonly held dangerous beliefs in modern society is the idea that it’s important to have a source of news in your life, whether it be the TV, radio, newspapers or the internet. However, recent events have made it clearer than ever that filling your head with some corporate entity’s idea of what the news is, is not only unnecessary – it is actually damaging to our spiritual life.

The news is presently filled with nothing but negativity and fearmongering. Needless to say, filling one’s head with a constant stream of this is incredibly draining. But as soon as the TV goes off, silence still reigns. Outside, the birds still sing and the sun still shines. People are not dropping dead in the streets. Life goes on. Never was there a clearer indication that what we fill our heads with – whether be our thoughts, or the material we consume that fuels our thoughts – is what determines our reality.

Even during less chaotic periods, there is very little offered by mainstream news sources that contributes in any way to the betterment of our lives. No-one should feel the slightest pang of guilt for not wishing to keep abreast of all the latest car crashes, murders, political squabbles and celebrity gossip. It’s tremendously sad for the victims of such misfortunes, but it is no concern of anyone’s except those directly involved. We have no obligation to concern themselves about these matters, and there is no benefit in doing so. It is not our responsibility to take on the grief of complete strangers. Even if some compassionate instinct compels us to do so, it will have no positive effect on the victims whatsoever.

Our responsibility as humans is to look after ourselves, our friends and family and our local community – in that order. Of course, the responsibility we hold towards our family is very similar in importance to that which we hold towards ourselves, so we should never put ourselves first in a selfish way. But putting ourselves first in a responsible way to ensure our own stability helps to ensure that we can adequately fulfill our duties to our family members.

The idea that we have a duty to be informed about the misfortunes of all others everywhere on the planet is an invention of the modern globalised world, and the mass media that helped to create such a society. The world carried on just fine for millennia using word of mouth as its only news service. Anything that’s absolutely crucial for you to know will still reach you by this method even now. If nobody comes to tell you, you probably don’t need to know.

It’s even more absurd when the news reports on atrocities or misfortunes occurring in far distant countries. A small number of folks may consider it part of their life’s work to better the conditions of those living in other countries. They are to be praised for their compassionate decision, but the vast majority of people do not share this life purpose. Furthermore, such a calling requires action – simply watching foreign atrocities and misfortunes on the TV news and taking on others’ grief serves no purpose to anyone. Again, no-one should feel guilty for refusing to burden themselves with the sufferings of those to whom they have no direct responsibility. Of course we can pray for them, or direct positive energy towards them – or whatever we feel inclined to do. But then we should simply trust in a higher power and detach ourselves from the situation. We should also remember – whilst not allowing it to stifle our compassion – that people in these situations chose to incarnate here and to experience certain things, even sufferings, in order to learn particular lessons and evolve their souls.

Disconnecting from the news can be a difficult process in the beginning, if you are accustomed to keeping abreast of things. Curiosity may get the better of you and you may find yourself taking a quick peek at the headlines online, or looking at the front page of the newspaper if you see it in a shop or a cafe. But if you persist with it, the curiosity will pass. Having less noise in your mind will make it clearer and calmer, and you’ll quickly find that you’re no worse off by not filling your head with a constant stream of negativity.

Once you’ve emotionally disconnected, you may also find that you need to make some other changes to avoid being unintentionally exposed. Certain websites you’re accustomed to visit – for example, the login page on your webmail account, or the default start page on your internet browser – may display news headlines. You may be exposed to the radio on buses or in shops. You can take some steps to avoid these too, such as changing your start page or – if you really want to get serious about it – taking noise cancelling headphones with you if you’re likely to go somewhere where the news will be on. You may not wish to walk around with headphones on all the time, as this can make it difficult to be fully present in the moment, but having nature sounds or even music available to block out the news break is quite OK.

Of course, it’s difficult to avoid all exposure all the time, and we shouldn’t be too obsessive about it, nor should we be anxious if we do find ourselves exposed to the news on occasions. But if you try at a bare minimum to avoid all intentional exposure for a few weeks, you’ll wonder why on earth you ever filled your head with such drivel in the first place. The troubles of the wider world will fade away and you’ll be much more able to focus on the real world – that is, the world you live in. Yourself, your friends, your family and your community.

Yes, your external world will become smaller; but your spiritual world will become larger. Try it and see.

Truly, all our problems are just thoughts and beliefs – they can be changed

Many people respond angrily when they’re told that all their problems are caused by their thoughts and beliefs. I felt the same when I first became aware of this concept. I had a deeply held belief – a story, nothing more – that I had been damaged by childhood influences, and that my confidence and inner peace had been irreparably damaged as a result.

Part of the reason I was so defensive of this story was because I had done so much reading about psychology, and was intellectually convinced that certain events in my childhood had caused certain neuroses. It all made perfect logical sense. I didn’t feel any emotional need to cling onto this story like some people do – because it gives them excuses, or someone to blame, or some other secondary benefit. No, I felt the need to cling onto my story simply because I was intellectually convinced that it was 100% true.

I kept clinging on to that story until I made an important discovery that changed everything. That discovery was this: perhaps it was all true, exactly as I had believed it. Perhaps my psyche really had been damaged exactly as I believed. Perhaps these kind of bad experiences and poor parenting have similar effects in everyone who experiences them, just as the textbooks say. It’s not that the story is necessarily untrue; it’s that I don’t need to have a story at all. The truth is, I did experience some traumatic events in my childhood, and they did have an effect on me. But it’s not true that I’m stuck with those effects. The idea that the damage is permanent, or that it requires years of energy work or – God forbid – talk therapy to clear it is just that – an idea. A story. A fairy tale. It is true as long as it continues to be believed.

Many enlightened individuals prove that these stories and all their ill effects can disappear in an instant as soon as the soul fully grasps the truth that it is whole and complete, and it does not need to cling to its baggage. However, like enlightenment itself, it’s a truth that tends to be obscured by its very simplicity.

Sydney Banks is one such gentleman who had many of the personal, emotional and financial problems we all face. Chief among them was troubles with his marriage. In 1973, he and his wife went to a marriage counseling retreat to try and sort out the problems, but it didn’t appear to be helping. Sydney was confiding all his problems to one of the other attendees – coincidentally a therapist by trade – and the man responded by telling Syd: “I’ve never heard such nonsense in all my life!”

Though the therapist was fully unconscious of the consequences of his words, somehow they sunk in on a deep spiritual level. Instantly, Banks knew that all the problems he’d just been describing were figments of his imagination – like the plot of a virtual reality video game, if you will. For that’s what life really is, in essence – a virtual reality simulation where we can’t possibly lose the game. We are really here, for sure – and so are the people around us. But it is an artificial state of disconnectedness from the Source, which we take on in order to rapidly further our evolution.

Banks spent the rest of his life bringing his message to the world. Distilled down, his message was essentially that there is nothing wrong with any of us. Life consists of three principles: mind, consciousness and thought. The first two are entirely whole, perfect and complete as they are, and our task on earth is simply to make our thoughts whole, perfect and complete also. Once this happens, the artificial stories we have sustained with our thoughts disappear, and along with them goes all of our imagined problems. It’s like typing an invincibility code into the video game – suddenly there are no dangers, no problems, no inconveniences. We realise that the video game is forever giving us exactly what we need to learn the lessons we came here to learn. All is well. All of this can happen in a single instant once we truly, deeply realise the truth of it.

Judith Sedgeman, a teacher of Banks’ three principles, describes her experience in a profound post on her website:

“SEEING is fluttering briefly into the emptiness before thought where you KNOW the power of thoughts forming, your own power to form thought, as a spiritual gift before form. I realized that I had previously memorized, pondered about, and repeated the definitions of the Principles as they were always described, thus innocently focusing on the formed word to understand them, rather than awakening to the formless, the true Principles, the spiritual energy of all life in creation, before the words. I had been reading the notes, but missing the music.  That was one of the most exciting insights of my life, and it was a point of transformation…”

“The point is beyond words, in Universal energy we all share and through which we become our formed selves. Seeing the pure energy at the source, though, we have certainty that anything we see or know now could change, simply with the formation of new thought. Access to that reality is through stillness, through quietude, not thinking harder…”

“For me, in the instant I caught a glimpse of that, I SAW and KNEW the absolute absurdity of taking any thought seriously. No matter what. It’s no more possible to hang onto really beautiful thoughts than to drive away really ugly thoughts. They all pass naturally as the flow of formless energy continues to power us through life. We have to re-think them to “keep” them. When we SEE that for ourselves, we cannot possibly harm ourselves with our own thinking, any thinking. Because we KNOW we are living a dream brought to us by our unique imagination and the creative power of life. We know the dream is fleeting, evanescent, just images we create, passing across the screen of our minds, signifying nothing but the beautiful power to keep creating them.”

For most people, it won’t come as instantly and easily as it did for Syd. But until it comes, we can meditate on the truth of it, and live our lives knowing that all the three principles are sacred. Mind and consciousness are sacred because they are the essence of the divinity within us; the eternal, perfect creative force that existed before we came into mortal, physical form. Many of us have no trouble accepting this, but we have trouble realising that thought is equally sacred. Our task on earth is to make our thoughts whole, perfect and complete like the other two principles – and when we’ve achieved this, we’ve won life.  All our problems are over and we’ve found heaven on earth.

So our minds should be like a sacred altar – purged of everything unclean, with no place for anything less than pure, holy, positive thoughts.  Of course, this should not be read in any sort of dour, puritanical way, and we should certainly not berate ourselves or panic if we fall short.  We can simply adopt the sacredness of the mind as an attitude to help us realise the true importance of taking control of our thoughts.  The mind is truly sacred – take care of it.