Did you ever go to a party and talk about it with your friends the next day? Did it seem as though it was a different event? One friend loved the party and another hated it. Seems as if everyone wears his own tinted glasses.
The fortunate person who grows up believing she lives in a friendly universe enjoys the party. The one who grew up with critical messages doesn’t have much fun. Same party – different party.
In New Thought we believe every person has a mental atmosphere (consciousness) that constantly sends messages out to Universal Mind. The beliefs return to us as experiences, effects or conditions.
A person who believes the world is a lovely place attracts love. On the other hand, the person who believes it is a scary place will attract trouble. Your beliefs create the good news or the bad news. The very best news of all is that you can change your beliefs.
In the first chapter of the Science of Mind Textbook, the founder of Religious Science, Dr. Ernest Holmes says, “To learn how to think is to learn how to live.” Every Sunday, the speaker in a Center For Positive Living, delivers a talk that includes some version of “Change your thinking and change your life.”
One way or another, if we want a condition to change, we must do something so that our attitude toward the issue changes. In a way that is simple. On the other hand, it is a lifetime work.
While none of us is able to control every bit of our lives, we do need to know that we have a great deal more control than most people used to believe. The first time I heard about our thoughts creating our life experiences, I thought it was nonsense. Those who are growing up now are more familiar with ideas of how positive living can impact our lives.
When I was a teen, Ernest Holmes was just hitting his stride. Oprah wasn’t born. I don’t think I knew anyone who believed we lived in a friendly universe. We had just finished a devastating war and most people were frightened there would be another one. But enough people changed their minds so that the Cold War ended with a fizzle, not a bang.
I knew life wasn’t the movies but I dreamed big dreams. I would someday be thirty-five, live in New York City and be a working girl. The term “working girl” meant something quite different in those days and while my dream job was vague, my dream apartment was quite specific and wonderful with white rugs and two white poodles.
Because I dared to dream and because I worked hard, I did eventually end up in New York City but it wasn’t exactly what I’d dreamed. I shared a rent-controlled apartment with an aging, divorcee. Ah well! I never liked poodles anyway.
It took me a long time to change my mind but I am now happier than I could have dreamed as a child. I now believe that we live in a basically friendly universe. My God is a God of unlimited possibility.
So much of what we believe is from the surrounding culture and we are not even always aware of it. We must learn to be independent thinkers. And we must learn to be aware of what we are thinking and what beliefs we are acting upon. We need to remember the law of cause and effect is always working.
Many years ago, I read a chapter in a self-help book on how spiritual law always responds. The chapter was entitled, You Will Always Get The Raise.
The author told a story about a man who worked hard and had a great attitude, but he was overlooked for the raise he deserved. However, this good worker continued his efforts and he was offered an even better job in a different company.
We don’t always get the pay off in exactly the way we envision because our vision is limited. The Law of Attraction is Infinite Power and Infinite Possibility. We should never despair because we will always get what we think we deserve.
To see how the Law of Attraction works, take a look at repeating patterns in the lives of people you know well. Don’t judge or criticize, just observe. After you have done that, your next step is to look at your own repeating patterns without judgment.
Now look again and find some success stories where things have turned around. Perhaps you or someone else has had several unsuccessful relationships and then established an excellent one. If you look closely, you will probably see that something in the belief system changed first.
It may look like fate or luck but change in patterns is because of changed beliefs. This is true in every area of our lives. Accept that you are loveable and Universal Mind will find a way to return the new love and joy. Accept that you deserve to be acknowledged and you will get the promotion. And so it goes.
You will always get the raise, although it may be in a surprising way and not from that old situation.
The concept that the spiritual law of cause and effect returns your prevailing belief is very different than the rules you learned about being a good little boy or girl. Working with spiritual laws opens people’s lives up to unlimited possibility.
You are truly in a position to prove the phrase, Change your thinking and change your life.” Right now. If you have been around Science of Mind for a while, think back to how you were feeling when you first arrived and compare that to how you feel now. You will discover change for the better.
Even if you are new, you can prove this very quickly. Decide on a goal, and do spiritual work around the issue of belief. Keep records and notes for a month, then check you data. One reason Science of Mind is called science is that it is verifiable.
While you can’t change everything overnight or even in a month, you can test it and observe progress. Even better, practice makes perfect. As you learn that you can change your thinking a bit at a time for the rest of your life, it gets easier.
How do you change your thinking? You may find affirmation cards helpful to carry in your pocket and review several times a day. You should think about taking a class and going to church on Sunday. You can buy my book, Science of Mind Skills, on this website by going to New Thought Works page.
Most of us get a much narrower and tighter view of life as children than we discover for ourselves as we become adults. You can change your mind. You are never stuck. You do have choices.
Even if you encounter resistance breaking out of your early belief system, you can do it. Remind yourself that millions have done it before you. Continue your practice and risk putting some effort into changing your thinking. Remember that all effort will be rewarded. You will always get the raise.
What’s one belief you’ve changed?
What’s one belief you want to change?
What’s one great prevailing belief you have?
When I sold my 1968 Volkswagon and packed it up for Mexico, my McGovern sticker was clinging to the rear window. The election was quite over but I was reluctant to tear down the dream. It seemed to me that all hope for world peace was lost. I was wrong.
Senator George McGovern died last week at the age of 90. He was a great man who opened minds to the possibility of peace in the world. When he lost the presidential election to Richard Nixon, I was discouraged but that was not the end of the story.
McGovern’s honesty and courage continued into next forty years. I thought his passing received less attention than deserved, probably because of the 2012 election news. On the other hand, everyone I heard or read praised him for his vision and called him a visionary.I also think he was a powerful change agent.
McGovern had strong personal convictions about what was right and wrong. Killing was wrong. Helping people was right. His deep seated notions are still at work in the consciousness of the United States.
Despite our drift into war in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is clear that US citizens are running out of enthusiasm for war. I believe that Senator McGovern’s life has been instrumental in opening our consciousness to the advantages of keeping the peace.
He was courageous and vision-driven and even more important, he was consistent. McGovern was guided by his spiritual principles and he valued his beliefs more than winning strategies. The opposition painted him as a wild-eyed radical and he lost dramatically. McGovern won 17 electoral votes and Nixon got the other 520.
A recent New York Times article quoted McGovern as saying, in 2005, “It was an issue-oriented campaign, and we should have paid more attention to image.”
I realize this is history for most of the people living on the planet today. I write about it because history is important. That campaign is a factor in the image driven current campaign, for instance.
In the late 60’s and early 70”s, the Vietnam War seemed to come out of nowhere. There was a draft then and quite a few young men moved out of the country to avoid going to war. McGovern attracted a large number of young idealists who were anti-war.
There were other issues at risk in the 1972 presidential campaign. McGovern had a consistent liberal record in the Senate. He steadfastly voted for measures that helped the poor, supported civil rights, and championed women. He was for expanding food stamps and head start programs along with other liberal issues.
Not too long after losing that election, I left the country. It’s true that I was very disillusioned with American politics but I was also disillusioned with teaching, relationships, and just about everything else in my life. I’d started drinking again and I needed a place to hide out so I decided on a geographical change.
Oaxaca was a beautiful, old-fashioned state way down south in Mexico. It offered cheaper living, a lovely climate and wonderful folk art. The few Americans who were there were either hippies or snow birds. I was an eccentric age 40. The other expatriates were all their 20’s or 60’s.
I personally learned a lot in Mexico. I learned that I was a total alcoholic and needed to give up the idea that anything outside myself, including a move to a foreign land, could “cure” me. I learned that AA could help me quit drinking. I also learned a great deal about Mexican art and folk art. At some level, I loved Oaxaca and it was good for me.
My years there also taught me what a great country the United States really is. The level of poverty and corruption in Mexico, at that time, was astounding to me. The custom of mordida or bribe was so ingrained that it went unnoticed. When the Watergate scandal hit the US, it simply didn’t seem very important. All politicians were totally crooked. What was all the fuss about?
I almost completely missed Watergate. When USA tourists wanted to tell us about the scandal, we expatriates just yawned. We were living in Mexico where the police made 90% of their living on bribes and waiters “bought “ their jobs from their bosses so they could garner the tips.
That was then and this is now. My interpretation of how life works underwent an extreme makeover 38 years ago. Since I now see everything in the light of Science of Mind. I know that our lives make a difference and that consciousness creates experience.
I also know that an individual’s consciousness, once stretched, never returns to its original state. When I read that statement by Dr. Raymond Charles Barker, I laughed out loud. It made me think of consciousness as being like a pair of comfortable old shoes.
Sen. George McGovern had a comfortable consciousness and he helped stretched mine. I think he represents the best about this wonderful nation. His honesty, steadfastness, and courage are important to us all. I give him credit for helping us envision a peaceful planet.
Now that I a Religious Science minister, I have participated in many visioning workshops and led many presentations on the unlimited possibility of God. We say it something like this every Sunday because this is our belief system.
God is Unlimited and I am the recipient of God’s Love through spiritual law. I can achieve and receive what I can envision, believe, and accept. God is Divine Givingness and responds automatically to my consciousness.
I know that New Thought and other peaceful religious groups are growing in size and influence. Our national consciousness is changing and McGovern is one impetus for that change. You and I are another impetus. We are making a difference right now.
In church, nearly every Sunday, we sing the Peace. Song. We are diligent about accepting peace into our personal lives. We can also be diligent about accepting peace in our collective spiritual life. We even have a Season For Non-Violence in the late winter. The era of peace is not only possible but inevitable.
George McGovern lived with honor and he continued to speak out about his goals, vision and ideals. He did not let defeat in the 1972 presidential campaign define him. He made a difference in a big way.
He was one of my “wayshowers”. I have never swayed in my political views about what’s important. I vote for issues, not image. My life plays out on a smaller stage but I know it makes a difference. So does yours.
Thank you, Senator George McGovern. You weren’t a peacenik or hippie, but you were an inspiration. I believe that your ideas were the beginning of major shifts. Thank you for modeling hope and courage.
The ideas of the 60’s morphed into the 70’s and change began to happen. We not only withdrew from Vietnam, we changed the status of minorities and women in this nation. We expanded admission to elite universities, drilled holes in the class system and ushered in a profound interest in Eastern religions.
George McGovern, you were a conservative man. You went to church, cut your hair short, and wore neckties but you spoke your truth in a beautiful way. It was a short skip and jump from you to the Beatles, Joan Baez, and Bob Dylan. Our nation sang about peace and love and it is still singing.
What I know is that Hope continues the journey toward Peace and Love never dies.
Whom do you admire?
How does that person make a difference?
What qualities do you admire?
Do you also have those qualities?
I am reading the CSL minister’s list, where we share our questions, ideas and opinions with each other, every day. Some genius suggested that we spend this week praising our teachers. The site is now jammed with expressions of gratitude. As I read the shared thoughts, I am delighted my fellow ministers express such heartfelt and humble gratitude. Apparently, we are all aware that we stand on the shoulders of giants.
I have had plenty of jobs in my lifetime and most of the people I worked with, (including the ones in helping professions) spent a lot of time grumbling about their colleagues, their pay, and their chores. Some even brought their home troubles to the water cooler. Like most people on the Planet Earth, they couldn’t appreciate that their glass was at least half full.
My colleagues in Religious Science recognize that their glass is running over with joy, wisdom and love. They also know that expressing gratitude keeps that joy, wisdom and love chronically bubbling up and over.
Even though it is a part of our religion, I was pleased by how generously my CSL ministers rushed to praise their teachers. Many of them expanded their lists to include the teachers of their teachers. Some colleagues also praised their fellow ministerial students. A few even praised their own students! Others went back into history to thank Ernest Holmes and RW Emerson.
It is true that we can pick up a lot of wisdom from friends, fellow students, and media personalities such as Wayne Dyer or Oprah. Books can also be powerful influences but there is nothing like direct contact with a true teacher.
I wish everyone would enroll in a Science of Mind class this month. Basic classes are offered in individual Centers For Positive Living all over this nation, and Canada; they usually begin in September.
These classes are priceless because they offer direct contact with teachers who have spent years learning a useful spiritual teaching. Classes teach us how to direct and choose our experiences. We discover more freedom and more choice. They give people a chance to establish relationships that go beyond listening to Sunday talks and enjoying pot lucks.
Like my colleagues, I have a long list of teachers that I am grateful for. Dr. Frank Richelieu’s enthusiasm gave me hope even though I could not commit in those early days. I was still too self-involved to reach out but I knew he was there. I carried a treatment he wrote for five years in Mexico and even read it from time to time.
Once sober, my first classroom teacher, Rev. Valerie Seyffert helped me put the 12 Step program and Science of Mind together. The word surrender still represents a very complex idea for recovering alcoholics who are in Science of Mind studies. Rev. Valerie had the personal understanding that help me through that semantic maze.
I will always be grateful to my teacher, Dr. Nancy Anderson, because she was a visionary with courage. She was also very skilled at answering questions and I had plenty of them. She walked me through third and fourth years, one “yes but” at a time.
I want to repeat… I believe that everyone should sign up for a Science of Mind class this week. You can find them by checking out the Center For Positive Living website. If you are unable to study with a group, there are online classes.
Whether you are in a position to take Science of Mind classes or not, you are certainly able to play follow the leader and focus on gratitude. Why not take a few minutes to remember some of the people who helped you by pointing out a new path?
I hope you remember all your wisdom teachers, in and out of school. For example, I had a gym teacher when I was 17, who said, “Jane, don’t tell me you are bored. Intelligent people are never bored.” Her wisdom statement has guided me all my life. There is always a new project, a new book or a new person to enjoy.
As you go over your personal list, see if there are any people you want to call or write to thank them for their help. Believe me, a thank you note from out of the past can be a true gift. Why not make it a practice to express gratitude to one or two people each day?
Even if you cannot thank people in person, it is good to remember the gifts you received. Over the years, I have heard much about releasing resentments by writing a letter to the bad guy and then setting the letter on fire to release your bad feelings. Why not try a reverse process? If we can release bad feelings, we can also hold onto and embrace good feelings.
I met a woman whose Master’s Thesis in psychology was called Teachers. She wrote about all the people in her life who had taught her the things that enabled her to be the person she was. I remember reading a bit of it and thinking it was a sweet activity.
Wouldn’t that be a great project? Why not write a letter of gratitude to each of the good guys and paste them in your scrap book? You can have fun looking at the best things in your life and, at the same time, you will be telling the Universe that you accept and bless those experiences. Surely, the Law of Attraction will kick in and your life will be even better. Gratitude is my best magic trick.
It is wonderful to be in association with grateful colleagues. They are all on my gratitude list for today.
Additionally, all my blog readers are also on that list. I count each of you as a blessing and I hope you will appreciate this post enough to pass it along to friends.
Thanks for that. Also, won’t you send me a comment if this post sparks memories or gratitude ideas for you? Thanks in advance.
Where do I sign up for a class?
Who are the teachers I am grateful for?
Do I want to call or write to any today?
Do I like the idea of a scrapbook of a gratitude scrapbook of stories?
Would I like to start it today?
I am reading a piece about creative endeavors and I remember my long-gone husband, Dick Miner, who was a space physicist and inventor. He once told me, “I have a hundred ideas for every one thing that actually works.” At the time, I was astonished because I believed a genius should always know what he was doing. Now I know he did.
That old adage, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again,” is true. My years in the ministry have absolutely convinced me that most people give up too soon. We are all geniuses if we stick with it.
People have dreams and those dreams are God-given indications that they can have whatever it is they desire. Perhaps they want a new job, a new home, or a wider circle of friends. Those are goals that can be reached, no matter what circumstances they think stand in their way.
It is always possible to create anew because God is an ever-present, all-powerful co-creator in our lives. We have free will and we have goals, ideas and dreams. Our goals that are life affirming can be backed up by the power of God and we can achieve them.
It is important to pray for your dreams and when you pray, believe you already have what you desire. Whether you want to find a perfect right mate or to write a book about Emma Curtis Hopkins, it begins with a new idea. Honor that idea. Take the steps that seem sensible and if that step doesn’t work, try another one.
Many people simply give up too soon. They write a few pages and decide their housekeeping chores are more important. Or they want a better job and send out resumes for a month or two and then give up. The true reason they give up is that in their heart of hearts, they believe they don’t deserve the dream or that, for any number of reasons, they can’t have it.
It is not enough to want something. You have to believe you can achieve it. Your prayers enlist the help of God in helping you attain your dream. They also eliminate your false ideas that stand in your way. When your consciousness is clear of reasons why you can’t have your desire, you will achieve it. The only real failure is not continuing to pursue your dream.
In New Thought, we teach that you can have just about anything you can desire, envision, believe and accept. We believe that God operates as spiritual laws that can change the current reality to a new and better reality. We believe that our prayers are a way of enlisting God’s spiritual laws on our side.
We all have desires. But we must change our thinking so that we can envision and accept our desires and that is where prayer and affirmations come in. Our spiritual practice is important. Those prayers, visioning meditations and affirmations all open up our mind to accept and believe at a deeper level. We develop a new consciousness of who we are and what we can do and what we can have.
That’s how it works – sometimes so quickly it seems like a miracle – but it always works according to spiritual laws. What may look like a miracle is a result of a change of consciousness, not luck, magic or anything supernatural.
It is important to understand that we are not really praying for “things” but for the consciousness to attract and hold a new idea of ourselves. We think we are sick but our new consciousness reveals that we are well. We think we are lonely and the new consciousness is so filled with joy that it attracts many friends. And so it goes.
Sometimes the new consciousness comes in a brilliant flash of light and we are revealed as a new idea created in God’s image. We truly see ourselves in a new way and since our lives will go in the direction of our prevailing belief system, life becomes a series of successes instead of failures.
If we try something and we don’t experience amazing success that just means we have to keep doing what we are doing. We pray again, each day, until we see the result we desire. We take each prayer as one step toward the goal rather than failure. We are on a spiritual journey and our prayers are our means of movement forward.
It takes a consistent approach to managing our minds to achieve our goals. When we apply for the job, we must believe in ourselves, dress the part and answer the questions with confidence. We do not put obstacles in our way. We are prompt, business-like and self-confident. Prayer can make a definite turnaround in our attitude.
We should never give up on our dreams. A persistent approach really will pay off. I know this from personal experience. It took me more than one try to finish college, ten years to build a writing career and nine years to lose that hundred pounds. Even my ministry grew slowly but it grew into a beautiful work.
You have a wonderful life and you can fill it with wonderful choices. Remember that you cannot fail as long as you stick to the program of believing in the dream and working toward it. Pray daily and take the necessary steps.
Take the steps that make sense. Start looking for the mentors you need at any particular time in your life. Want to learn how to paint? Find out about Grandma Moses who started her painting career in her seventies.
Want to finish college during your retirement years? Check out your local junior colleges and then go to the online universities. Want to lose that weight? Find an exercise and diet plan you can live with and then do it.
Above all, keep up your creative spiritual work.
If you don’t know how to do use affirmative prayer, take a foundation class and/or buy my Science of Mind Skills book. (Go to New Thought Works on this blog) Remember to pray and remember to believe that it is possible to create what you want. With God’s help, you can be the genius you were meant to be. As for that question about when you should give up… How about this answer? – “Never!”
Am I following up on my dreams?
What can I do today to move forward?