"A revelation of insight into the foundations of human suffering & transcendence. It not only lays out essential steps for inner freedom and joy but illuminates the way to true human potential." Paul Rademacher, author: A Spiritual Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world and practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd, author: Daring To Be Yourself

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Get a Grip on Your Thoughts & Get a Grip on Your Life!

When your thoughts are allowed to do as they wish; when you are not in charge of them, you will generally find yourself in a position of being tortured by them. They come and go - seemingly of their own volition - and carry you in their relentless wake, often threatening to pull you under into a place that can only be likened to Dante's Inferno, an unending hell of servitude to those same thoughts. Furthermore, those same thoughts also bring about feelings that are typically negative, whether they are stressful, angry, impatient, painful or sad, or any other variation thereof.

Is this really something you want?

I imagine you are already shaking your head, because who would want something of this nature? Who would want to be tortured like this, and who would want to be held in the continual thrall of thoughts that are not ones that you would voluntarily have?

What can you do? Distracting yourself, or soothing yourself with addictions of any kind, ranging from drugs, alcohol and indiscriminate sex to rampant shopping, gambling, under- or over-eating, workaholic behavior or frantic socializing, are clearly not the answer, and yet, that is precisely what many people choose to do. And of course the result is never positive. It merely drags them down further.

Conversely, others seek spiritual answers, or meditate, or read many wonderful books, or go to numerous inspiring workshops. And yet, many of these people also find that this is not the answer. At least not if they are not yet consciously changing their lives by adopting some of the teachings they find in the books or workshops.

Change Your Inner Channel

Think about this: it’s such a wonderful thing to know, as you sit down in front of the TV, or turn on the radio in the car, that you are free to change channels whenever you want. Are they showing a violent film and you don’t enjoy violence? Is the news program concerned more with making you believe some ideological concept you are not in tune with? How about the music? Is it your kind? Prefer something different? Or is the chick flick a bit too smarmy for you?  Is the action movie not gripping in any other way than action?

You get the picture. It’s the simplest thing in the world to change to another channel or another radio station. Curiously we don’t seem to realize it’s also the same with our inner channel. We can change that in a flash … if we so decide.

Do you understand what this means? If you are upset, angry, impatient, judgmental, critical, filled with hate, thinking about revenge, suffering, low in spirits, or just having thoughts you don’t feel good about, you can change your inner channel.

Deciding to Become Conscious

And so, those who continue in their place of pain or chaos or desperation, eventually find themselves in a place where they know that they no longer wish to remain. And then they finally begin to make some changes. And one of these changes, that impacts enormously on the weight of those unbidden and tortuous thoughts, is the decision to become conscious. That is where you need to be in order to change the inner channel. Such a decision means that the one who now chooses your thoughts is you, as opposed to you being the one to whom the thoughts come. This alone can change the course of your life in an unparalleled fashion.

Are you choosing your thoughts today?
Are you choosing to become conscious today?

For more information about thoughts, choice, freedom and living a conscious life, have a look at my book Rewiring the Soul: Finding the Possible Self, available at Amazon as paperback or e-book for Kindle.

Click here to download the first chapter. The chapter on thoughts, titled: Thoughts: Portal to Awareness will most clearly answer the questions that may have arisen upon reading this post.

An Early Review (From Amazon):

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful."

Peggy Rubin, Director, Center for Sacred Theatre, Ashland, Oregon; author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

Excerpt from an Interview:

Who is the book written for? Rewiring the Soul is written for anybody who suffers and I guess that means just about all of us! It is written for anybody who has not yet experienced enduring happiness and inner well-being; anybody who is reaching for inner peace; anybody whose life is not as they would wish it to be.

What can a reader expect to gain by reading this book? What makes it different from most other transformational or self-help books out there? So many wonderful teachers tell us about working on our spiritual selves. So many other wonderful teachers show us how to work on our psycho-emotional selves. But very few actually integrate the two. And Rewiring the Soul is my response to that challenge. Rewiring the Soul brings together the need to take your daily life in hand with the need to put your spiritual life in order as well. By daily life I mean your personal life, your professional life, the way you do or do not love yourself and all that such an attitude entails: conscious awareness, healthy boundaries, meaning in your life, recognizing you always have a choice, and taking responsibility for all your choices, etc., and by spiritual life I mean the inner connection to your eternal self.

If you have learned how to meditate, or do yoga, or whatever it is that you do, have you also learned how to observe yourself in the middle of an argument with your rebellious teenage son or your angry partner and hence choose to react differently because you have learned to love yourself enough to do so? If you have learned how to communicate more effectively with your children, spouse, friends, colleagues or employees, have you also learned how to be mindful and connect to yourself in meaningful ways to achieve that spiritual balance in your life?

While Rewiring the Soul is about so much more than that, those previous examples give an idea of what my book is about and how it does so in such a way that our psychological and spiritual selves nurture each other.

In a nutshell: neither the spiritual nor the psychological or emotional dimensions of your life will work if you neglect:

your inner connection to the eternal self while you seek happiness in the outer world

your happiness in the outer world while you seek the connection to the inner eternal self

It was Goethe who said "If everyone will sweep in front of their own door, soon the entire world will be clean". In Rewiring the Soul 'sweeping in front of your own door' means bringing yourself to the utmost point of inner and outer growth, creating progress in body, mind, and soul. This literally means that you have already begun to change the world because of how you are changing yourself.

Are there many exercises in the book? Not at all. This book does not mean hard work, or spending a lot of time doing specific things. It simply means that as you read - if you so desire - you begin to incorporate small changes into your daily life. And so it begins. And the quality of your life changes...

How did you come to write this book? For years the essential content of Rewiring the Soul was like a small, recurring voice in my head; it was always there, and simply would not leave me alone. I had dozens of excuses for not writing it: I was working on my Ph.D. in psychology, I was teaching at a state university, I had three sons, later I was occupied with moving back to Spain, I was setting up my private practice, I had a monthly newsletter to write in English and Spanish, I had a weekly one-hour radio show to broadcast, I had a daily blog post to write, I facilitated numerous workshops and gave frequent speeches, and apart from all of this busy activity and work, sometimes I even had a life. In short, I told myself the book would simply have to wait. But just as a splinter under your skin eventually needs to be seen to, I ultimately realized that the only way I was going to be able to honor the more and more loudly clamoring voice in my head - and heart - was to sit down and write the book.

And you know, that goes to meaning. We all need meaning in our lives, and although I had many things that gave much significance to my life already, the inner urging and excitement I felt each time I thought about Rewiring the Soul compelled me to write the book. Rumi puts it beautifully: "When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy".

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