The Three Principles

 

Mind is the universal intelligence behind life, Consciousness creates an awareness of what we call reality, and Thought is the power to create our moment to moment existence.” – Sydney Banks

 

There is no technique to understanding the Three Principles of Mind, Consciousness and Thought as first articulated by Sydney Banks. They are a truth of how we experience life, and they are the reason no two people have the same view of the world. We may share similarities, but our thoughts are unique, add to that our intellect, culture, life experiences, learning and belief system.

Understanding these Principles comes from a feeling within, when you have an insight to them, it can vary from an “Aha” moment of, that is so true, why didn’t I think of it before, to an OMG moment of feeling like your heart is going to burst with love and excitement from the recognition of truth in what you have just come to see.

When you start to realise these truths, life just seems to become easier, knowing that you are connected to a higher power, a higher intelligence, a higher guidance, brings a sense of peace to your mind.

For me, understanding the principle of “Thought” instantly took away some of the limiting beliefs I had grown up to have. Realising my negative thoughts and low moods are “normal” and don’t need to be controlled, was so freeing. I knew I was blessed in so many ways, but I could never understand why my mood could get so low at times, as there was depression in my family, I worried it was genetic and could lead me to there.

I understand better now, that our most natural state of being is one of pure peace and love, the one we were in when we were born, the one we all have the capacity to come back to at any time.

Understanding we all have low moods, and it is only when we  get stuck in our thinking about it, ruminating over past hurts or the uncertainties of the future, or searching our intellect for a solution to a problem we think we have, is what keeps us trapped in a low state of mind.

Previously during low moods, I would have been quite harsh on myself for not being more positive and grateful for all the great things I have in my life, and, for getting so lost in a past hurt that I would actually feel the emotions all over again. Knowing what I do now, I am much kinder to myself when I get lost in my thinking during a low period, instead of berating myself now, I quieten my mind, letting my thinking settle, no longer trying to figure out the reason for my low mood, instead reminding myself it will pass,  and like a cork in water, my natural state of peace will soon rise to the  surface of my consciousness again.

Even though I am new to the understanding of the Three Principles, I had been living in consciousness of a Divine energy, known as “God” to me, and over the years have had many insights of knowing, there was more to life than what we can see. One of my first memories of this, was when I was 11 years old, our dog Lady, a beautiful long haired German Shepherd,  had just had nine pups, I was sitting with her in our shed where my Dad had fixed up an area for them. The pups were crawling all over each other, yelping and fighting for a space to feed from her. I remember feeling sorry for her, as she looked exhausted. I really wanted to help her with the pups but could see she was on high alert and instinctively protective of them. I sat as still as possible, just gently stroking her head, as I did this, I sensed her getting more and more relaxed. I slowly moved the pups around her, giving them more space while gently stroking them until they too quietened down. As I looked into Lady’s eyes, l was suddenly overcome by a feeling of deep connection between us, I could see the trust in her eyes, making my heart burst open with love for her and her pups. I felt a rushing sensation in my head and a ringing in my ears, and had such a strong feeling of what I can only describe as everything being perfect in that moment.

While I was too young to fully understand what was happening, I knew without doubt we were all a part of something much more than what I could see around me, I felt a sense of oneness I couldn’t quite comprehend. I sat for hours in  stillness, watching over Lady and her pups as they slept, soaking in the peacefulness of it all.

When you have a realisation like this, the description that comes to my mind now is, it is like holding a jackpot winning lottery scratch card, as you scratch the opaque covering, it crumbles away bit by bit so that what is hidden underneath is slowly revealed, the more you get to see of what is there, the more excited you begin to feel, your mind can suddenly see all the possibilities and potential available to you, as piece by piece you begin to get closer and closer to this life changing experience.

And so, if this speaks to somewhere inside of you, or leaves you with a curiosity to know more, follow where you are guided to look, know that, when you are open to it, you may be surprised where and how the knowing who you truly are comes to you.

Thanks for reading,

 Angela

Namaste:  “I honour the place in you in which the entire universe resides. I honor the place in you of love, of light, of truth and of peace. And when you are in that place in you, and I am in that place in me, there is only one of us.”

 

Thought vs Our Thinking

“If the only thing people learned, was not to be afraid of their experience, that alone would change the world” – Sydney Banks.

Being new to the understanding of the principle of thought, I had been pondering over the question, what is thought as opposed to thinking. In a moment of reflection I came to see our thinking as being the soundtrack to our thoughts.

Thoughts flow through our mind like photo images, all day long. We have conscious thoughts and subconscious ones. Often, they are triggered by our senses, things we see, smell or hear, which led me to the realisation, how we respond to our thoughts, is a lot like how we choose to listen to music, for example, we can listen to the radio not knowing what song will come up next (letting our thoughts flow), but understanding if we are tuned in to a certain frequency (our state of mind) it will play a certain kind of genre (positive or negative thoughts), or we can listen to a playlist we created, made up of  songs we like, (controlling our thoughts).

I also thought about, how hearing an old song can trigger a memory, bringing you right back into that moment, it can put you into a trance like state, seeing the past event vividly replaying out in your mind, you feel all of the emotions you felt back then, and depending on the memory, it can make your heart soar, bringing a smile to your face if it’s a happy one, or tighten your heart, even bringing you to tears, if it’s a sad one.

As our thoughts flow, we regularly zoom in on one, triggering our thinking around that thought, which will most likely be habitual thinking, made up from past experiences, our learning, and our belief system. This trigger effectively turns up the volume on our thought, adding a soundtrack to the movie like scenes which begin running through our mind, be they romantic, sad, uplifting, scary and so on, each of which cause us to have an emotional response, such as, love, joy, fear, grief, etc. In turn, releasing the chemical associated to those emotions, into our bodies.

This is how we are made to function as human beings, and if our thoughts and emotions are balanced and we see them as just being a part of how we experience life, rather than our reality, we will have good mental and physical well-being.

However, it’s when we get stuck in our negative thoughts and the emotions they bring, such as fear, anger, grief, regret or shame, believing our thinking to be true, we can soon start to see symptoms of illness showing up, for example, if we are fearful our brain releases chemicals such as cortisol and adrenaline as part of the fight/flight response, which was essential in our cavemen/women days, however, as we’ve evolved, it is rare we face such dangerous situations. Our brain reacts to our thoughts whether the danger is real or perceived and continues to release these chemicals until the danger has passed, or our fearful thinking has settled.

An example of this came to mind, as I remembered back to when I first watched a scary movie, I couldn’t help reacting to the threats playing out in front of me and was terrified at times by what was happening in the movie, at certain points I would get such a fright my heart would nearly burst out of my chest, leaving me with an elevated heart rate and shaking until I could talk myself round to the fact it was only a movie.

While I can look back on this now and laugh at my innocence, it made me realise, we also have these same reactions to our thoughts. When we get caught up in fearful thinking, it can feel real to us and leaves us with fearful sensations in our bodies, and while the odd fright does us no harm, if we are doing this long-term we start to feel the ill effects of it in our bodies and minds.

I want to stress, having fearful thoughts and reactions is part of being human, in fact being fearful in certain circumstances can be exhilarating, exciting and fun, (think roller-coasters). It’s only when we get stuck in our thinking about them for prolonged periods of time, believing them to be our reality, they can become a problem.

I also remembered back to when I was 13 years old, my siblings and I watched a tv series called “Salem’s Lot”, it was based on a novel by Stephen King and was about vampires, it was the most terrifying thing we had ever seen, and we were hooked. I remember one particular scene left us cowering behind cushions. Once we settled down from the fright, we couldn’t help but laugh at each other’s reactions. At times the soundtrack would change to a more threatening tempo, signalling the arrival of another terrifying part, which inevitably would send one of us running to the television to switch it off (pre-remote control😊), until we thought the scary bit had passed, however we didn’t like missing out on what was happening and decided to try it with the sound turned down, as we watched it that way, we laughed about how silly it looked now without sound and how it was no longer frightening to us, we were amazed to discover something as simple as turning the sound off, could take away it’s ability to frighten us. We could see it for what it was, moving pictures on a screen, which to be honest,  made it kind of boring. This realisation made us brave enough to keep the sound up for longer periods, getting us to where we could watch it through, with no intervention needed.

And that’s all our thoughts are too, moving pictures flashing onto the screen of our consciousness, its only when we give them dialog by ruminating over them, that we make them into perceived real life, and if it’s the same scary or pessimistic talk, (your habitual thinking), you are giving your thoughts the ability to frighten or sabotage you, by simply lowering the volume on your thinking, gently quietening the chatter, you take that power away. This in turn, leaves space for inspiration to deal with whatever might be troubling you, or insight for a new way of understanding, or clarification to see your thoughts for what they are, formless energy, shaped to look real by your thinking.

Thanks for reading.

Angela

Namaste: “I honor the place in you in which the entire universe resides. I honor the place in you of love, of light, of truth and of peace. And when you are in that place in you, and I am in that place in me, there is only one of us.”

 

A time of unlearning

Mind is the universal intelligence behind life, Consciousness creates an awareness of what we call reality, and Thought is the power to create our moment to moment existence.” – Sydney Banks

At the age of fifty one I had my first introduction to the three principles of Mind, Consciousness and Thought, as articulated by Sydney Banks. He explained how these are fundamental truths of how we experience life. He also explained how, we all have innate well-being, with our most natural state being one of pure love, peace and light-heartedness Know that, this state of being is available to all, and, we have the capacity to return to this state, the one before our intellect, our experiences in life, our learning and our belief systems, which has been hidden by our over-thinking. We cover this natural state by ruminating over the past or worrying about our possible future.

I came to understand, if I wanted to get back to this natural state of peace, I needed to let go of my limiting beliefs, my habitual negative thinking, and to stop reacting so quickly to memory triggers, which often led me to assume the worst, while trying to guess the outcome or find a solution to, any perceived problem I had with someone or some situation.

Over the years I had been trying hard not to react to, or take offence from, some people’s bad behaviour. Now with my new understanding that only people who are hurting, hurt others, and reminding myself that in our thinking, we are all living in different perceptions of the world, with theirs most likely being a more frightening or troubling version than mine, has made it growingly easier for me to react in a more compassionate way, leading to nicer interactions with family, friends and even strangers throughout my day.

Over the years I have completed many holistic, spiritual growth  or self-improvement courses, along with reading many insight provoking books by authors from all around the world. A misunderstanding I was hearing a lot, was about controlling your thoughts, by using affirmations or changing negative thoughts to positive ones as quickly as possible, which I worked really hard to do, but could not sustain for long periods, leaving me to feel disappointed in myself and exhausted from the effort.

It was when I came across an on-line course called “The Path of Effortless Change” by Michael Neill, and his understandings of the three principles, that I realised I had been trying to achieve the impossible. He explained the principle of thought, describing how thoughts are transient energy, which come and go throughout our minds all day long, and how wet are not responsible for them.

It is only when we get stuck in our thinking about them, that they become movie like stories we believe and feel to be real, often causing us a lot of unnecessary worry. He went on to explain how, when we find ourselves stuck in our thinking, we can simply quieten our minds, allowing our thinking to settle and our thoughts to flow again.

While this sounded too easy to be true, within days of trying, I caught myself many times trapped in my thinking and he was right, as soon as I quietened my mind, the thought storms in my head settled, leaving me in a calmer more peaceful state of mind.

As I am gaining a better understanding of the principle of thought and the thinking it triggers in me, I now let my thoughts flow more freely, realising I no longer have to stay stuck in my thinking, trying to find solutions to any perceived problems I would have ruminated over in the past.

I have also found by quietening my thinking it allows space for a creative or clarifying insight to either resolve what’s bothering me or for the realisation that the problem is only in my thinking.

I’ve also come to know that like our thoughts, our moods change often too. I have come to understand that when I am in a low mood, I am more likely to have fear based, worrying and anxious thoughts. While before I would have reacted to them with negative self-talk, criticising and berating myself for not being more positive, or for not being grateful enough for all the good things in my life. getting caught up in insecure thinking, questioning my abilities, or a decision I had made while in a more positive mood, seeing it now as a bad idea, or putting made up obstacles in my way, maybe telling myself I’m not capable of doing it or that I would not see it through, all of which left me feeling even more insecure.

Now that I better understand the nature of the human experience, I realise our moods are a natural part of it too, I also understand that like thought, it’s not something I can control. Now, during these low times I am gentler on myself, knowing it will pass. I have become more aware of how something as simple as hearing a song I love on the radio, or coming across a funny clip on Facebook can lift my mood and while my external circumstances are still the same, they suddenly don’t seem anywhere near as troubling, the higher my mood gets. Any impending doom-like thoughts and feelings are soon replaced by better feeling ones, leading me back to my most natural state of well-being. I liken this to a cloudy summers day, understanding the sun is always there, and at any moment, the clouds will move on, allowing the sun to shine through again.

Thanks for reading,

Angela

Namaste– I honour the place in you, in which the entire universe resides. I honour the place in you, of love, of light, of truth and of peace. And when you are in that place in you, and I am in that place in me, there is only one of us.