ABOUT POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE THINKING
It is a well-known worldly fact that man sees what he looks for and confidently expects to see, whether it be "good" or "bad,” “success" or "failure." We have seen the results of "positive" expectations and have watched the apparent failures that negativity brings. Within the human picture of things, those who look for certain "effects," confidently expecting to see them, generally get to see what they are looking for.
From out of this phenomenon has grown the cause-effect metaphysics of the Western world, generally an expansion of the Eastern idea of "karma." It teaches, in part, that one's personal experience will be greatly improved if he will turn his thinking from the negative into the more positive expectation of "good." There is an expanding assortment of books along this line of "positive thinking," as the Eastern idea gains in popularity around the world.
But, reader, listen carefully. Is this expectation and realization of "positive good" what one really wants? Undoubtedly, for a time it seems so to us all, but is there any lasting freedom in such action? None at all! On the contrary, this "positive thinking" is to take the weight of the entire world on one's shoulders, endlessly having to determine what is positive and what is negative, what is "good" and what is "evil," and then to make positive calculations and eliminate negative thoughts, expecting positive results and refusing to anticipate negative effects. This has us attempting to judge, heal and make over the universe to fit a personal judgment of positiveness.
This, of course, is what the world is doing, but such action is widening, not lessening the apparent dualisms of "good and evil," "real and unreal," "truth and error," etc.
"Positive thinking" is only the humanly judged "good" aspect of thinking, planning, calculating and evaluating. All personal thinking, every bit of it, positive or negative, glosses over the transcendent NOW and leaves us trying to manufacture a personal idea of another perfection; it places this Now-awareness in another time and in another place.
"Who by taking thought can add one inch to his stature?" Jesus asked. "Take no thought . . ." said He. We have done with all personal thinking, positive and negative alike!
How? The big question, how? Of himself, the personal thinker can never stop thinking. Thinking is his entire activity, his happiness and sadness from birth 'til death. Like Macbeth, thinking is his role on the stage and is all there is to him. "I can't stop thinking," says he. "Neither can you," he adds. "Thought goes on even while we are sleeping."
This is true; the personal thinker, the great possessor of mind, cannot concentrate himself out of thinking, cannot meditate or ponder himself out of thinking. Then how? Listen softly: One ceases thinking as a personal thinker just as quickly—and only—as he stops believing himself to BE a personal thinker. At that instant, in the twinkling of an eye, he is the thinking of the Divine Mind; he is Awareness itself, filled with joy-full thoughts—not the plans and calculations of the manipulator, but wonderful thoughts of a beautiful and complete NOW! Indeed, as thought-full Awareness itself, he becomes aware of thoughts that are a continuous surprise and delight, thoughts that are spontaneous, automatic, effortless—so wide, so all-inclusive as to astound the old judgmental sense of self. This is "the Mind by which the prophets spoke"; this is "the Mind which is in Christ"; this is the Mind being the Awareness I am—this Awareness right here, right now.
I see a grain of sand on the ground. How much effort must it expend to be there? How much work must it do to be just what it is? And over there is a pebble. How much labored activity must the pebble engage in to be a pebble? There is a tree, effortlessly being just what it is, reflecting every law of life and grace that is being the tree.
The mountain there—must it do anything to be a mountain? The rivers? The lakes? Must the ocean muster its own energy to pound the shore, or is a greater law being the power of the tide? How much effort must this earth expend to turn on its axis and wheel in its great circle about the sun? Consider the sun in its galaxy of countless stars; how much power must it expend to maintain its place in the spiraling nebula? None at all. None at all.
In the infinite universe where Reality so orders everything from the wheeling galaxies in the heavens to the little pebbles at the edge of the brook, why must man, of all the images within consciousness, struggle and strive so, stretch and strain so, to reach the Order, the Harmony, the Power, that is inescapably here and all already?
Everything is Harmony, present as a perfect universe. Reader, look at the sunshine. See the blue sky. Behold the bird soaring there while the earth turns so silently. Look at the effortlessness of yon flower just being a flower.
All this serene effortlessness am I.
Excerpt from "A Guide To Awareness and Tranquillity" By William Samuel
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