Imagination: Technology for a New Spirituality
ANCIENT ARTS & SCIENCES
from the pages of Thresholds
Technology for a New Spirituality
by William Marts
The Dalai Lama recently stated that we may become an Enlightened One once we rid ourselves of all negative emotion. If this is true, and we are all endeavoring for enlightenment or illumination, then the gateway that permits such an accomplishment is of great interest to humanity, especially the metaphysician who is a seeker of higher consciousness.
Charles Fillmore perceived the imagination as one of our twelve powers. Steven Covey has placed the imagination as one of the avenues we may use to become proactive in our responses in his proactive model.
But there is much more to the imagination. In the last decade, scientists and researchers of the mind have established that we think in imagery. Our very thought processes begin with the image. The image is the foundation, the substrate of all thought.
The image is the primary manifestation in the order of mental activity. Out of the formless, the first manifestation to emerge is the image. As we hold images in mind, the immediate result is our emotions. We all know the subsequent manifestations of thoughts held in mind.
As metaphysicians, we are concerned with what is behind things or what is the true nature of things. By focusing on our imagery, we soon discover that emotions are the direct result of the imagery we hold in mind. Past imagery in our memory banks also contains a record of the emotions experienced while creating this imagery.
Our imagery moves matter telekinetically to create various neuropeptides and neurotransmitters that carry messages throughout the body resulting in how we feel. This is emotion. The longer we dwell in particular imagery, the more potent it becomes. Thus, we experience various degrees of emotion.
Our metaphysical authors have all made the connection between thought and manifestations into reality. We have all heard the phrase, Thoughts held in mind produce after their kind. Metaphysics has quite a lot to teach us about our thoughts and what they produce.
The connection between imagery and thoughts has had little focus. The Bible (KJV) uses the word imagination beginning in Genesis 6:5: And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. It is interesting to note that no word appears in The Bible referring to emotion. Some scholars believe that the phrase the imaginations of the thoughts of the heart refers to the concept of emotion. Indeed, the sequence of mental activity is correct:
1. the imagination
2. of the thoughts
3. of the heart
The link between imagery and thought has been made for millennia. The ancients realized that the foundation of thought is our imagination.
As metaphysicians, as teachers, as humanitarians, and as practitioners of spirituality it is necessary that we start the new millennium with our focus on imagery. The problems of the world, personal problems, the entire spectrum of negative imagery and its manifestations are the result of the imagination running amuck within humanity’s individual and collective consciousness. Positive thinking does not bring the level of success that is produced by consistently avoiding negative imagery.
It has become the mental habit of most people to control their emotions and their behaviors in the name of being good. Yet, these same people are many times suppressing negative imaginations as they control their behaviors. This is not to say that there is anything wrong with controlling your emotions or behaviors. The point is that there is no emotional or behavioral urge to suppress when the imagination is contained within the spectrum of positive imagery. This is truly aligning our thoughts with the God-Mind.
Negative imagery initiates The Fight or Flight Response within the body. If a bear confronts us, we well understand the chemical rush of fear that is released within the body during The Fight or Flight Response. Yet, this same response initiates in a subtle way for insignificant reasons such as hearing the statement, You are wrong. The Fight or Flight Response may initiate for as little as someone telling us that they don’t like our haircut or our clothes. Any perceived threat, real or imagined, initiates The Fight or Flight Response. Aside from real situations that are truly life threatening, the mind imagines the majority of threat. This same principal also applies to suffering. When we imagine threat or suffering, the body quickly produces the chemicals necessary for fight or flight. These chemicals are toxic and interfere with the ganglionic energy centers.
Our bodies were designed to metabolize away these toxic chemicals with activity and time. This does not work well in our society today where we may be in an office and experience our perceived threats consistently. We inevitably become overloaded with toxic Fight or Flight Response chemicals — literally poisoning ourself.
But there’s more. When we create or dwell in negative imagery and The Fight or Flight Response initiates, the mind begins to filter out all positive information that it is receiving about the environment. Nothing positive is threatening, so this information is not needed. That which is a threat is the focus. So, the attention is encapsulated with everything that is or appears to be threatening, that which might become threatening, and that which has been threatening in a similar way. The imagination literally runs away with itself within seconds — comparing, calculating, hunting that which is a threat. During this phase, positive thinking is very unlikely, if not impossible. Survival has been perceived as threatened. Yet, this entire sequence of events is a primitive response that has little use in today’s society.
We are divine beings. The proof is in the practice. When we create and dwell in positive imagery, we feel great, we are healthy, good comes our way, we enjoy the highest quality experience life can provide. When we create and dwell in negative imagery, we feel afraid, toxic chemicals release within our bodies, and we perceive a lower quality experience.
Research shows that our minds are capable of creating hundreds of disassociated personalities, viewpoints, and paradigms. This is demonstrated by our emotional states of mind. Imagery, thoughts, and emotions think. They contain a disassociated paradigm which we may begin to associate our self with during a shift in imagery and emotion. To be positive, we must hold positive imagery. To be our divine self, it is necessary that we hold divine imagery.
The following technique has proven helpful in developing consistent positive imagery in spite of appearances. It is as simple as installing a new software program within the mind as a new point of reference or schema. Through a higher logic, it can become evident that consistent positive imagery is truly the way of the masters.
The Basic Imagination Control Therapy Software Program
• Something happens, a situation develops that appears to justify the creation of negative imagery and emotion.
• You then discover that you have a negative imagination in your mind or your emotions are becoming negative. There may be times you are engaged in internal dialogue, speaking, or action that you may not have your attention on your imagery, but your body will feel the imagery. This is your cue to initiate a change toward positive imagery.
• You then acknowledge the imagination or emotion.
• At this point, you must accept this challenge by exercising your responsibility as a co-creator, faith, and a desire to improve your self-image. In spite of any appearance, you become loving and create positive imagery. Love makes the difference of who you are. Through faith and knowing who you really are you will come to terms with any risk you may attempt to reason, such as feeling foolish or unrealistic, by understanding the creation of positive imagery will not be inferior to the creation of negative imagery. Acknowledge that this is how you are renewed in mind and self.
• Next, before the imagination becomes an emotion (or at the first sign of negative emotion if your attention is occupied and you are out of touch with your imagery), you search out and find a realistic viewpoint or perspective where you can choose to create positive imagery through your own creativity.
Actually, by directing our attention to remaining unified with God, we are influenced by His creativity. Our Mother/Father God always creates a direction for our imagery to form, offering us the opportunity to create the highest quality experience possible. All we have to do is surrender to His Idea.
This change in imagery will automatically change your emotional urge. Keep in mind that emotions are manufactured on the spot by our imagination. Even if you delay until a negative emotion begins to develop and strengthen, you can reverse the process by creating positive imagery as quickly as possible. This is similar to making a wrong turn when driving, realizing the mistake, and then turning around. A negative emotion means it’s time to turn around, you’re going the wrong way.
• Lock in these positive thoughts with faith, a higher logic, the satisfaction and pride that you are representing God with all of your mind and heart, and the realization that positive images are productive while any negative images are counter-productive or destructive. And, acknowledge that you are avoiding the Fight or Flight Response initiated by negative imagery.
• Continue to create positive imagery despite all negative appearances. Find ways of improving the quality of your mind movie creation. Creating the highest quality experience possible is the goal.
Having completed this sequence (which may happen in a fraction of a second), we have fulfilled our responsibility of co-creatorship. Each time you are successful, notice how much better you feel as a result. Give some attention to becoming aware of the options these imaginations bring forth since you have retained your clear mindedness. Each time this is accomplished successfully, the sum total of our self, in terms of experience, is renewed to a higher state.
No greater step can be taken toward the development of the consciousness and health of humanity than to cleanse our imaginations.
The Dalai Lama, is quoted in Violence and Compassion: Conversations with the Dalai Lama, by Jean-Claude Carriere. His Eminence states, “I believe deeply that we must find, all of us together, a new spirituality. This new concept ought to be elaborated alongside the religions in such a way that all people of good will could adhere to it. We need a new concept, a lay spirituality. We ought to promote this concept with the help of scientists. It could lead us to set up what we are all looking for — a secular morality.”
This new spirituality — a secular morality, can be found in devoting our attention to our imagery. We have the science and technology. Let us spread the word.
William Marts is the founder of The Imagination Institute, a personal ministry website. A member of The International New Thought Allicance, the Society for the Study of Metaphysical Religion, and Unity, he conducts sound and light workshops teaching the correlation between what we think and the body’s emotional response. Find out more about imagery in the new book, Imagintelligence: Beyond Emotional Intelligence, published by The Imagination Institute, 236 Bonnacroft Dr., Hermitage, TN 37076, or visit imagination- institute.com.
©2001 Vol. 19 No. 1
copyright© 2002, School of Metaphysics