Think for yourself. Think outside the box, beyond the expectations of the few, taking advice from the realm few venture into. Learn what it means to think from your heart, to make decisions from your heart center, your true place of decision making. Learn to think from the self that knows more than you imagine, the part of you connected to all that is, to the greater purpose and meaning of life and to the greater good. Change how you think and you will surely change your life. Learn to think with love.
Today, Jeanne invites us to know ourselves, connecting to all that we are, in a different way. A new way of thinking and being, to be exact. Try it and see what happens. You might be pleasantly surprised at what you learn about yourself! And not a bad way to start off a new month!
Thinking and feeling are two diametrically opposed psychological functions. Although they share a judging characteristic in common their methods of assessment are very different.
Thinking is an analytic process that breaks down what it perceives into component parts which it then logically compiles to explain why things happen as they do in reality or how to make specific things happen in reality. Thinking freezes reality, like taking a picture, and then fragments this static image into component parts. Thinking defines itself as capturing objective reality and rendering it knowable through its abstract vocabulary of thoughts.
Feeling, in contrast, assesses reality based on a subjective energetic reaction that registers in the body with an emotional affect defined as feeling. Thus feeling would look at an object in the world and decide if it had value based on the feeling it evoked when perceived through the senses. Whereas a thinking person might be drawn to purchase a picture based on the success of the artist and the quality of the craftsmanship, a feeling person might reject the painting because it elicited a feeling of boredom or distress. “How could I possibly have such a depressing painting in my home. I don’t care what it’s worth, it’s worthless to me!”
Feeling, in contrast to thinking, stays connected to the dynamic whole of a person or a scene. In order to make its assessments it needs access to a fluid interconnectedness with another being. In fact this allows feeling to continually refine its assessments, as it may change its feelings about someone or something as it experiences them more fully in different situations.
In the area of assessing human relationship, thinking and feeling, as might be expected, approach things very differently. Thinking might determine that a potential partner makes sense if they share similar interests, educational backgrounds and hold compatible goals. In contrast, feeling might value a more instinctive reaction of attraction to a potential partner to determine the worthiness of pursuit. Clearly, both functions have their legitimate place in such a significant enterprise as pursuing a relationship.
Many a relationship has failed because a purely instinctive basis does not offer enough to meet the requirements of a fully committed relationship. On the other hand, a purely logical choice of partner that adds up fully on paper but lacks an instinctive connection is destined for serious trouble.
Clearly, thinking and feeling both have their valid contributions in deciding upon a serious commitment in relationship. Sometimes it’s wise to table the feeling and listen to the mind, sometimes it’s wise to stop thinking and follow the program of the feeling.
Though inherently oppositional in nature and function both thinking and feeling have a valid place in decisions of relationship and ought each to be consulted and given their due. Thus with Descartes we might agree: I think, therefore I am, but add: I feel, therefore I am alive!
Life is a flow of energy. Judgment is a freeze frame of that flow of energy—an attempt to understand and value it—but clearly, judgment is not life. Life flows; judgment is static.
Don Juan Matus pointed out that human beings are perceivers, perceivers of the flow of life energy. He hypothesized that human beings went on to become judgers because it was an efficient way to manage the challenging dimension of life energy. Don Juan believed that the ability to quickly interpret and categorize energy in solid form gave our ancestors an advantage in defending themselves.
We can experience this today by simply walking in the road. We might see a flutter of movement in the distance. We then quickly judge that movement to be a skunk or possibly a rabid raccoon. With this in mind we plan our approach. Funny how many treacherous leaves and fallen pieces of bark I’ve encountered as I’ve approached these flutters in the distance—the dangerous jungle of the street I live on!
Carl Jung, like don Juan, agreed that human beings are perceivers who perceive through the functions of sensation and intuition. Don Juan would likely call these functions organs of direct knowledge—knowledge obtained independently of the mind.
For Jung, the ego, or the mind, develops the discriminatory functions of thinking and feeling to decide what things are and what value they have. These are the freeze frame functions of judgment, the solid interpretations of energy that don Juan spoke about. With judgment we create exhaustive categories of what life is, how it works, and also assign all this knowledge a place in our lives.
In the modern world, the judgment functions and their host, the mind, have become so dominant that the channels to direct knowledge are lost, devalued, and even ridiculed.
How often do we ask our bodies directly what they need using our innate sensation function? More likely we must research the latest study or be told by a professional what our bodies need. How did our ancestors ever know what to eat before we had science and Science Diet!
Intuition is vision into that which can’t be seen—a direct tapping into the flow of life energy. Intuition completely bypasses the mind. The rational, judging mind has little use for intuition, as it only deals with solid facts—the freeze frames of life’s flow of energy.
What I observe is that life continues to flow regardless of how we judge it. Life is, forever and anew, approaching us with both challenge and support. Challenge may come in the form of loss and deep trauma and support may come in the synchronicities of guidance and encouragement, presented in signs all around us.
Most of the time, life energy is moving us along in the most amazing ways. Unfortunately, because we are dominated by the judging functions of the mind, we miss the magic always active in our personal lives.
I constantly notice how bogged down we become in feeling bad about ourselves. We miss how the daily events of our lives unfold in such a meaningful and helpful way. Even more amazing is how we are continuously supported in our growth and evolution, in spite of the negative judgments we daily place upon ourselves.
Life continues to both challenge and support us regardless of how brutally we judge ourselves or how low our self-esteem. The real problem is not in our flow of energy but in our judgments. Often our judgments are so fixated that they refuse to take in the reality of the life we are actually living. Our judgments generate a negative interpretation regardless of the facts.
It seems as if we fear that if we truly accept ourselves as acceptable to life, we will invite the wrath of some higher power to level us. The fact is that bad things happen to good people and bad people alike. Life happens as it will. Energy will flow regardless of our judgments.
Judgment has no control over life. Judgment does, however, have control over what we allow ourselves to see and know about the lives we are actually living. Judgment is the ultimate spin-doctor.
If you judge yourself to be bad or a failure today, life will still bring you supportive energy tomorrow. Life is deaf to judgment. The real question is whether you will be able to be aware of the wonder of the day and the amazing gifts being offered. All that judgment does is fog the screen, but beyond the fog life continues to both challenge and embrace without judgment.
Can you suspend judgment and show up for the real show? And, even if you can’t allow yourself to get too close to the real show yet, life continues to challenge and embrace you anyway. The truth is, you are wanted by life to live and explore fully. It’s why it brought you here, as the eyes and soul of ever-evolving infinity.