Bending Reality with Your Mind
Down through the ages, various masters have taught that it’s possible to ‘bend reality’ by using your mind in a certain way. They didn’t always use those exact words, of course, but certainly the meaning was there. 2500 hundred years ago the Buddha was reported to have said, “Everything starts in the mind. With our thoughts we make our world.”
In the 1930’s Napoleon Hill, author of the mega best-seller “Think and Grow Rich” wrote, “Thoughts are things.” In the early 2000’s the hit movie, “The Secret” was based largely on the works of Wallace D. Wattles. He is the author of “The Science of Getting Rich”, first published in 1910. Wattles was a member of the “New Thought Movement” which according to Wikipedia online:
“…is a spiritual movement
which coalesced in the United States in the early 19th century. New
Thought was preceded by "ancient thought," accumulated wisdom and
philosophy from a variety of origins, such as Ancient Greek, Roman,
Egyptian, Chinese, Taoist, Muslim, Hindu and Buddhist cultures and their
related belief systems, primarily regarding the interaction between thought,
belief, consciousness in the human mind and the effects of these within and
beyond the human mind.”
I find the phrase, ‘within and beyond the human mind’ particularly significant.
At the age of ten I experienced what is commonly referred to as an ‘out of body’ experience or a ‘precognitive dream’ in which I ‘saw’ my future life laid out before me as though I were looking at the story board of a movie. This inspired me to spend more than twenty years to understand how such an event could happen. After two decades I formulated a model of consciousness which implied two quite remarkable things. The first was that what we call ‘memory’ works in the future as well as the past. The second was that it is possible to change the neural structure of our brains by thinking ‘in a certain way’. I started writing and speaking about this new theory in 1980.
Twenty years later, in the late 1990’s, scientists at Harvard University, using a functional MRI, confirmed both of these discoveries. The idea that your memory works in the future as well as the past is now called “Mental Time Travel”. A google search of this term reveals 682 million results. The idea that your brain can continually grow new neural connections is now called “Neuroplasticity” and a google search for this term reveals over 4 million hits.
As mentioned in the first paragraph, none of this is really new knowledge. Of course, it is new scientific knowledge because scientists now have measurable proof of both these aspects of consciousness. However, certain people -- yogis, spiritual adepts, religious meditators, philosophers -- have been aware of both of these for thousands of years.
Regarding mental time travel, Saint Augustine wrote in the fourth century that “All the past and all the future are present in my mind.” This implies that thinking of an negatively charged past event can make us feel bad in the present just as buying a lottery ticket can make us feel excited as we think about the future possibilities should we win.
Regarding neuroplasticity, the quote from the Buddha that “With our mind we make our world.” implies that changing our thinking changes our brain which in turn changes our perceptions, making us aware of things we never noticed before. This is an example of how our brain changes as we change our thinking.
Wallace D. Wattles wrote about this in 1911. I chapter 2 of his book, “The Science of Being Great”, he writes, “The brain cells may be multiplied indefinitely…any faculty, power or talent you possess … may be increased... if you will make the necessary effort you can develop any talent. The brain does not make the man. The man makes the brain.”
Of course both these ideas were not ‘scientific’ before the invention of the fMRI. They were considered to be metaphysical mumbo-jumbo. People who believed in them were thought to be naïve, like those who believe in astrology or tarot card reading. However, these true believers, yoga adepts and meditators are now getting the last laugh, as science goes agog over knowledge they have been using to improve the quality of their lives for thousands of years.
Anthony Hamilton is the best-selling author of “Mind, Time and Power – Using the power of your mind to heal your past, transform your present and create your future. It is available at https://www.mindtimeandpower.com.