If You Didn’t Ignore This One Thing, It Would Change Your Life
The Power of Thought in Kabbalah
There is one thing that is around us every second, which literally has the power to change our whole existence. It is something that almost everyone overlooks. It is so obvious that if I say what it is, you will probably dismiss it. But if you don’t, it will literally change your life.
Can you guess?
It is the Importance of Thought – the one most important thing that I can share from my ten years of Kabbalah study. This is not what people normally advise about thought – mere positive thinking, or picturing some mansion you wish for. It is that our whole reality is based on our way of thinking. And if we are to be honest, right now that way of thinking is distorted and works mostly against us. It needs repair if we are to live the lives that we were meant to live. How? First, we need to understand more about thinking and how it affects us.
Thought Comes First
My kabbalah teacher says that every human being has the innate ability to create what they want, to go from thought to action. Thought is at the root of everything, because nothing in life happens if we didn’t conceive of it first. Before someone created the first fountain pen, they had to think of it, and before I go to the store to buy a pen, I have to think of doing so.
Before a person does something violent, first they have to take on a violent way of thinking. So too for societies – if the thinking of a society is aimed toward creativity and productivity, it can create immense good. And if it veers towards violence it can create terrorism and catastrophe. The thought comes first.
Thoughts Can Make Us Sick, or Well
Our thoughts affect the way we approach everything around us, and they even affect our physical health. The mind-body connection is well known. How often do I hear from a friend who is working in a negative environment and suddenly just keeps getting sick? The placebo effect shows up in practically every health study ever done – when people think they are taking medicine but it is fake, a good percentage get well just because they thought they would. The kabbalists say that thinking affects us on every level – It can cause illness and it can also cause us to heal.
Thoughts Direct All our Choices
The underlying way of thinking directs all that we choose in life. Thus we have the same situations happen over and over again, and we think “Why me? How could this be happening to me again?!” But we can’t see how our thoughts led us right there.
This reminds me of a friend of mine from college; No matter how many wonderful men were in a room, she would always find the one guy who was just awful. It was obvious to everyone else that it wasn’t circumstance and it wasn’t luck. Something in her thinking made her choose that guy every single time.
But what about the rest of us? Are we really so different? We can blame luck or chance or the way things are. But most of us can’t say that we consciously chose our life situation just as we wanted it. On a subtle level, we may have more similarities to my friend than we want to admit. We may feel a little uncertain what we were thinking or which choices put us here. We may blame it on fate. The kabbalists would say we are abusing our own power of consciousness – because we don’t know how to control our thoughts.
Kabbalah Guides us to Lucid Thinking
My kabbalah teacher says that our consciousness enables us to be creative and productive, creating what we envision in life – if we use it correctly. Kabbalah can help us clean out our way of thinking so it is clear, lucid, and directed. It can help us to see how our whole perception of the world is shaped by our thoughts. And even to reach a whole different way of thinking – one that is spiritually linked.
Becoming Aware of Thoughts
Awareness of thoughts is a lofty task, and actually a very daring one since few will dare to attempt it. It seems unimaginable for most.
Most will never try because they think that thoughts are totally unimportant. Or they think their thoughts are already good.
But the one who dares to examine will find that actually our thoughts are not the way we think they are. That person can find their way through the noise to their own pure way of thinking and being, that is fully aligned with who they are. It is not easy, but nothing could be more worth the effort. And yes, it can and will completely change your life. It has certainly done so for mine.
The importance of thought is a powerful topic, so there will be multiple articles in this series, each with a practical exercise. Exercise 1 will be to start observing the thoughts, and more exercises will follow in the next posts.
Assignment 1: Each day, take 5 minutes to sit quietly to watch your thoughts. Just close your eyes, and observe them, as if you were watching them play like a movie across the insides of your eyelids. After the 5 minutes is up, write down every thought that crossed your mind. Keep practicing it until the next article.