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Thoughts Are Optional

I recently stopped thinking. It came back, don’t worry. But during the space where nothing was moving in my mind, I was able to experience raw reality. Like an epic presence. Like an ocean of color in front of me. Vividness beyond mind. Extreme reality. What words of the mind can begin to describe a state of no mind?

This has been happening randomly lately. A gentle touch from the Divine, inviting me back home to where Being reigns true. But even more than that super high ideal, this gift is something practical. Entering a state of presence like this is the most useful and wonderful thing ever. I could operate at every level you can think of. There was nothing debilitating about it. It was completely invigorating. I had conversations. I checked my phone. I read a bit. But those were hard to do because I was so intoxicated by the trees. What beauty depths nature provides us.

The high of that recent moment lasted most of the day. Moreover, it showed me more about how to actually return to that state. This wasn’t the first occurrence of no-thought, but it was a very educational one. I am coming closer and closer to inducing this state of being at will. I can tell that with more practice, it will become easier. It is Divine grace, yes, however that grace is to show me what is possible within me.

During open mic

A few days later I was watching an open mic performance, where artists, musicians, and humble folk step into the spotlight to share their gifts. As I watched the performances, I noticed which ones brought me into presence and which ones I became distracted in. I watched my distracted thoughts with a sharp awareness of how incredibly muddy they made my experience. The run away distracted mind completely robbed me of what was happening in the present moment. I saw it clear as day, how cloudy the run away thought made everything.

Mind is cloudy and doesn’t even know what it sees, because it only sees itself. Mind has no idea what reality even is. Mind can not become present, because full presence is empty of thoughts. Mind is but the canvas for thoughts to move around energetically. When the paint all slides off into the now, there is nothing. Only everything remains. This is what happened occasionally at the open mic. The performer would bring me so deep into the Now, that all thought briefly ceased. And I tasted being again.


Child like being

Presence is a return to childhood, yet different. The children do it automatically, always living in the moment. No schedules. No meetings. No Facebook. They are perpetually being. Until we knock it into their skull through example that they need to think like us. And by that, we mean think only. Stop being, only thinking.

Some of you may have no sense of being whatsoever. Most people will not have the slightest clue of what I’m even writing about. But those who know. Those who have sat in front of reality with pure clarity of a silent mind. Those will know. You will know.

You may have only had glimpses of it, just as I have. You may be seeking to hold on to it, just as I am. You may have no clue how to get back there, but I assure you, there is a light calling you back. The heart center is awakening in you and there is a way back. There is a light calling you back to presence. Back to living in balance between being and thinking.

Balanced being and thinking

There’s nothing wrong with thinking. It’s quite useful. However, it’s not necessary to be thinking all the time. Thoughts are optional. You don’t need thoughts to paint your experience in every single moment and situation. There is an off switch. You can live from presence too. You have the innate ability to experience the world directly through your heart. This is the place of being. It is where knowing, intuition, and inspiration all come from. However, instead of just bits and pieces that you grasp at when you notice them, you can actually learn to cultivate that presence within you.

Imagine that for an entire hour, you had no thoughts. Only pure awareness. Pure presence. For that hour you lived from a state of being that gave you unlimited inspiration. Even as you were going through daily life. At work. In a business meeting. While teaching kids. Driving down the highway. Singing your heart away. Whatever it is you do, imagine living for an entire hour without any thoughts. Instead of thoughts, you would be fully present and your life would feel like it bubbled out of you. An overwhelming sense of joy and creation in each moment. In every conversation you listened with your whole being and responded with the perfect phrase directly, bypassing all thoughts.

Mind is amazing

Let me reiterate the importance of mind and thought. It is a tool to be used by you. It is not who you are. Your analytical and problem solving abilities in the mind are incredibly powerful. The mind is quite literally a super computer. However, the computer is not the only way of being. When you begin living in a state of balance between mind and heart, you will have a full experience. Everything multiplies and gets better. Your mind becomes clearer and sharper. Your heart gives unlimited inspiration. Your balanced state of being overflows with joy. This co-creation is possible and calling you towards it right now — that’s why you’re reading this.

Many traditions shun the mind and ego. However, I disagree. Why shun a perfectly good super computer? Because they fear it’s ability to control you. Yes, it’s incredibly easy to become lost in the mind these days. The mind is very consuming. It steals your identity and calls itself a self. Yes, that’s true. However, you have the wherewithal to overcome your self and discover your True Self — as a connected sliver of God.

You were given these tools in this lifetime in order to create. However, if you’re only using half of the potential — only the mind — you are shorting yourself. You came here to create worlds, not just think about them. It is time you discovered your hidden treasure. Go into the heart more often and feel the presence of your being. Thoughts are merely optional.

Have you ever experienced a state of still mind? Where your thoughts completely stopped? Leave a comment below and let everyone know that they’re not alone. :)

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(Cover art made with Silk.)