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Creations are numberless, I vow to free them. 

Everything in the world that is man made started out as an idea. What we can create is numberless and that is both in the physical and in the mental realm.   But to come up with truly new thinking we have to free ourselves from our ‘old’ thinking.

Creations are numberless, I vow to free them. 

Renaissance sculptor Michelangelo is credited with having said: “Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.”  And so it is our task to free our boundless creative mind from the habitual, the automated.

Everything in the world that is man made started out as an idea. What we can create is numberless and that is both in the physical and in the mental realm.   But to come up with truly new thinking we have to free ourselves from our ‘old’ thinking.

Driving looking for a car park, the driver says, ‘They didn’t even leave me a space.’

A father comes home from work and notices thoughts in reaction to the loud chewing of his six year old: ‘Really, I work hard all day to come home to be exposed to someone chewing like a cow.’  

You put a lot of effort into something that everyone will benefit from, send out an email sharing all the info and no one responds.  You conclude that they take you for granted, they are lazy and self-absorbed.

Someone close to you drinks, gambles, or is inappropriate.  They promise to stop, yet it happens again and again.  You conclude, ‘Since this is important for our relationship, they obviously don’t love me enough.’

A workmate is quiet and doesn’t greet you when you arrive in the office. ‘She doesn’t like me!’, you think. 

Have you noticed how susceptible the mind is to seeing the world as if you have been slighted, as if people don’t like you, as if you are not succeeding, as if the world is against you?   And of course, with the world and everyone in it rotating around ‘moi’! Yet often things that happen have little to do with us. 

We tend to see ourselves as the centre of the world.  This comes back to the ‘me-ing’ discussed in last month’s newsletter.  Engaging in ‘me-ing’ will always be the opposite of being creative as it tethers us in our past while projecting into the future from that flawed and limited past perspective.  It is not our fault that we function like this, we are designed that way, in order to survive.  The brain is made to see the world in patterns, to learn from past experience, and to be self-referencing.

Our flawed thinking knows no limits.  Our delusions are inexhaustible.  All descriptions of our world are only temporary hypotheses.  What our thinking can offer is a little insight or revelation into the limitations of our little ‘me’ perspective.

Thinkers have pointed to this for millennia. The Stoic philosopher Epictetus said, “Keep constant guard over your perceptions, for it is no small thing you are protecting, but your respect, trustworthiness and steadiness, peace of mind, freedom from pain and fear, in a word, your freedom.”  

The word Buddha means ‘awake’, and the call is to wake up from the automatic, delusional slumber!  Why?  Because it leads us to suffering, to unnecessary suffering, and means that we miss the magic, the beauty in the world.  This morning, I noted little purple mushrooms growing in a big circle about three metres in diameter.  Why and how does that come about?  

Ants divide all seeds when they bring them into the nest so they will not sprout.  They can’t have all the little seeds that they store for a cold day sprout! The coriander seed they divide twice. It is the only seed that can sprout after being divided just once.  How do the ants know to divide the coriander seed twice?  And how is the information passed on?  Perhaps Morphic Resonance (Rupert Sheldrake) is the best explanation.  

Morphic resonance is a process whereby self-organising systems inherit a memory from previous similar systems. In its most general formulation, morphic resonance means that the so-called laws of nature are more like habits.  Habits of survival.  Habits that we humans also sit in.  Perhaps this explains some of our idiosyncratic behaviours?  And the general lack of creative thinking when it comes to conflict resolution or living together in new ways.

Because our habitual way of functioning is deeply embedded in our biology, there is much to break free from and we will never ‘get there’.  All we can hope for is to have little glimpses of what is beyond our ‘forming’ and ‘deforming’. Freedom of mind is there in glimpses, when we are not blinded by habitual ideas about ourselves, our relationships and others.  We become boundlessly creative in thinking when we place the habitual self on hold.

Tips for accessing a vast Creative perspective

Glimpsing the freedom is of course a daily and moment by moment challenge.  It is a challenge to not succumb to the habitual, the automated 100% of the time.  Curiosity is our greatest ally in this journey.  As soon as we are curious the automated is sideswept and the world opens up to us in a creative new way.

Interrupt with Five Magic Breaths

The biggest source of flawed thinking is delusion, or ‘not understanding things as they really are.’  Our trained neuropathways are activated so quickly that other options are camouflaged.  We can stop this by doing our Five Magic Breaths or ‘Dear Body’.  Through these practices, we can open up to a perspective beyond the habitual, one breath at a time.

Zoom out from the thoughts

Do not believe a word of the thoughts.  Know that any idea or commentary is inherently limited.  We can shift and lift our perception to notice what is being thought and greet it with a ‘interesting commentary’.  Or we can surrender to ‘not knowing’ and just sense the miracle of all the life around us.

Be curious about what is behind thoughts

The freedom is available when we rest our attention on the backdrop against which thoughts arise.  What is behind the curtain?  The question feels similar in texture to the question around what we were before we were born or became a foetus.  Perhaps we get a sense of the vast abyss.

Appreciate wonder and not knowing

Living and life is magic.  Creations are numberless, what the sculpture will be is unknown, and not the point, the point is the ongoing commitment to revealing what is possible.

If you are needing assistance with mindfulness, start with our free resources on our website: https://themindfulnessclinic.com.au/resources/

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