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The Disciplined Mind

Posted by Sooz on Sunday, April 28, 2013 | 4 Comments

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Goodness is a culture you develop in and around yourself that promotes genuine well-being of soul and body. It is a way of living that begins inside you as you care for your “nest” – the place where your heart lives. As you cultivate Goodness within, you find that it more easily flows from you to others. This is the cycle of Goodness. It starts in your heart, the seat of your soul. This is where the seeds of Goodness grow into thoughts and actions. We often miss this truth because our culture is so focused on the intellect or mind, but it is the heart that initiates Goodness. It is the heart that gives birth to desires which lead to plans and actions. It is all about the heart.

In our “mind”-focused culture we often lose sight of the heart. We build up the mind with endless facts and information and neglect to care for our precious heart-life. One of the biggest enemies of Goodness actually comes from the mind. Too often renegade thoughts try to capture our attention and drag us into the dark. You know what I mean – a fear comes into your mind and all of a sudden you are sliding down into a pit of negativity and fearful thoughts that overwhelm. Just one renegade thought can capsize an otherwise wonderful day. Why does this happen? More importantly, what can we do about it?

I suppose there are many theories about why this happens. My belief is that not all of our thoughts originate in our own minds. Just as there are forces for Good in the world, there are also dark forces that introduce disruption and harm. Think about it - every story has a villain. It is as if seeds of doubt, fear, and negativity drop into our minds uninvited. These dark seeds are like weeds in our fertile minds, and if we do not pull them quickly they will bear unwelcome fruit. We can debate where these thoughts come from, but the critical issue here is to realize that some of our thoughts are cancerous to us. We do not have to tolerate them. You can choose to believe a thought or shut it down.

For instance, I can be sitting alone and have a very negative or accusing thought about myself. The thought is not true and is not coming from my heart but my head. It is coming to disturb my peace and disrupt my day. I must sift through my thoughts carefully and check them with my heart. Are they true and consistent with who I am at a core level? Do they resonate with my beliefs? We are beings created By Love, To Love. If the thought in my mind is not consistent with that then I must dismiss it. Is this thought about me a loving thought? Is it fear ridden? Remember, fear is the enemy of Love.  Controlling my mind is critical to maintaining a space of heart-peace so that Goodness can grow. We see this in nature when weeds try to overtake healthy fruitful plants. If left untended – they will kill.

Any thought that torments you, promotes fear, becomes an obsession, or steals your peace is not Good for you! These thoughts are at odds with Goodness and need to be rejected. That does not mean that we need to dismiss an honest assessment of ourselves or the trueness of a situation we are in. But we MUST discipline our minds to refuse negative, discouraging, disruptive thoughts. They work like a virus to make us sick of heart.

Recently my husband woke up with a swollen face and tenderness in his cheek. Foolishly, I cracked the door and let fear in just a little bit. Before I knew it I was in full blown worry. I lost my peace and I gave up my joy because of fear. I had to battle all day to get my footing back. My husband wisely went to the doctor and got some medicine and I am confident he will be just fine, but I threw myself overboard by letting fear overtake me. It’s true; sometimes things do go terribly wrong – sometimes the bottom falls out, but those are the times we need Goodness the most. Fear and worry are never helpful in a trial. They confuse and distract us, depleting our resources when we need to be single minded and focused. When we find ourselves in a frightening situation we must remember to choose the thoughts we will keep and the ones that must go.

Do you struggle with worries that overtake you? Do you have thoughts that gnaw at your peace? They may be so common that you do not realize they are optional. Join me in the fight to Discipline the Mind. Become more aware of your thoughts and become the gatekeeper of your mind. Let’s get control of our thoughts and help promote Goodness by doing so. You are worth fighting for – your peace and well-being is worth fighting for. Keep your life like a well-tended garden. Watch out for weeds and pull them quickly. Let nothing take root that will choke out the precious life you have been given. Live in Goodness and everyone will be blessed by it. You can be a beautiful garden for all to enjoy!

“Rule your mind or it will rule you.”

— Horace

 


A "Good" Idea:
Controlling fearful and negative thoughts is a critical part of preserving Goodness. Find out why...

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4 Responses

  1. Susan,

    I woke today and read this aloud to a dear friend. It created a beautiful space for us. It reminded me of some of the basics that are so important to live by. To make the article even more complete, I would expand on the thought of the mind and add the body/emotion. Often our body and its chemical reaction to life can generate signals of fear and you cover emotion to the extent you cover fear, but in my experience I can have emotions like fear arise without thought, leading me to cycles of negative thought. For example, I wake with a sense of dread which has no origin. It could be I am too tired, haven’t slept well, food is not settling. In these cases I must also use the mind to still the heart. I take my mind on the same journey you outline, to ask if there is a rationale for “feeling” this way. In the end, no matter where the opponent of Goodness comes, mind, body, emotion, or people losing their battle with darkness (depression, selfishness, despair, jealousy), one thing is true. The conversation of the mind with the heart rather than with itself is the answer.

    Thank you for blessing us with Goodness today,
    Nadi

    • Sooz says:

      How true, Nadi. The conversation between mind and heart is key – thank you for adding to the conversation and the understanding of Goodness at work in us!

  2. Emily says:

    I’m one sentence in “Goodness is a culture you develop…” and I’m already all “YES.” Develop. Development takes TIME. We practice things we’re working to develop – they don’t appear, neat and packaged and on cue. Goodness – and good *anything* is, yes, “a culture you develop”. Brilliant, as always, Susan.

    • Emily says:

      “They may be so common that you do not realize they are optional.” And THIS. We have choices every minute. Every single minute.

      Thank you for such clear truth here, dear friend.

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