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May 17, 2008

The Anatomy Of A Thought


This week, I thought I would do something different. I want to share a practical exercise for conscious expansion. The purpose is to become more aware of your inner being. The inner being is the part of you that is aware. People have referred to it as the spirit, the unconscious or the indwelling intelligence. Sometimes the inner being can be confused with thinking.

Thinking is not who you are, it is a behavior that you have learned. We are conscious of thinking, but we can be unconscious to it as well. Similar to our breathing, most of the time we aren’t even aware of it. It is on autopilot until we bring it under direct control.

Thinking can go on autopilot as well, and it is assumed that because of the constant barrage of information in our heads, we are aware. This is not always true. Try to remember all the thoughts that you’ve had in the last 15 minutes. Not an easy task, but you can remember those thoughts that you focused on. It’s like a particular task you have to get done, or maybe your feelings about a situation. This is because the majority of our thoughts act like background noise, and they stay in the background unless we choose to become aware of them.

By expanding our understanding of consciousness (meaning conscious and unconscious as a whole), the knowledge of our true selves becomes clearer. This will allow us to control thoughts in a manner that benefits us, instead of allowing our thoughts to dictate us. Thoughts dictate us by triggering emotions. We react based upon the type of emotion, to either stop or amplify the feeling. Does this sound like a system you want to run on automatic? Unfortunately, it does for most of us, but by understanding this system, we can become aware of how to use it for our benefit.

In this exercise, we are going to shift our awareness inward. By this, I mean focusing all of your senses internally.

  • Begin by making sure you are not interrupted and are in total silence.
  • Make yourself comfortable, you can lie down or sit.
  • Make sure no parts of your body are crossed.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Shift your awareness to your head. Visualize how your brain looks. See if you can feel it, or maybe you can hear the fluid it is floating in.

It is important that you do not rush through this. Take your time and observe the feelings and sensations of each area of your body.

  • Shift your awareness into your throat.
  • Continue to proceed down your body.
  • Move your awareness in your chest. Become aware your breathing, don’t control it, simply observe it.
  • Shift your awareness into your lower body. Include your waist, thigh, calves, feet, and toes.
  • Once you have shifted your awareness throughout your body, become aware of the surface you lying or sitting on. Then, see how far out you can extend your awareness from that point. See if you can visualize the room you are in, and keep going.

After you complete the exercise, note how you feel. Write down your experience. Some may find that their focus shifts from their bodies to actively imagining other things. Others may notice nothing at all. This is ok as well. Just continue to practice until you can keep you focus inward.

Remember, the purpose of this exercise is to show you that you are more than your thoughts. Be patient with yourself.

Quote for the week:

“It is not enough to have great qualities. We should also have the management of them.”

–La Rochefoucauld

Roderick Watkins is a Certified Hypnotherapist and doctoral student in Metaphysics. His mission is to aid you in finding resolutions for conflicted parts of your being using spiritual resources. His blog is exclusive to Urban Thought Collective.

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