Thoughts, Emotions, and Two Wolves 

 April 12, 2021

We were created with thought. Thoughts are energy. Emotions are energy. Everything is energy. That means that what you think, feel, perceive, judge, and the quality of your thoughts, matter a great deal as to how your life unfolds moment by moment.

I once heard a quote from Denzel Washington that “if you are only looking for red cars you will see red cars.” This is very wise. I see this often with my clients and have experienced this in my own life. If you believe that you are not good enough you will probably fall short every time. You become conditioned to that belief, attached to it if you will. You may then judge yourself to be inferior or inadequate and a swell of negative emotions can seep into your consciousness and subconsciousness to the point you are probably not even be aware of it. This then becomes a stress reactivity cycle and your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors become conditioned, and you get “stuck”  in the broken record and every time you try to get out of it you find some experience that reinforces your belief that you are a victim, the world is not fair, people are jerks, and there is nothing you can do about it. This is where anxiety and depression can manifest and become greater obstacles on your path as you continue to feed them.

In my own spiritual journey, psychological work, and inner child regression eventually, after confronting my self-defeating core beliefs, I arrived at my truth that… “I AM LOVED.”

The process of seeking truth and doing inner child work was not easy or comfortable but the result was terribly wonderful. All my life I had the ability to love others unconditionally. I practiced mindfulness and nonjudgment to others but in reality, I judged myself harshly. I didn’t love myself, not really anyway. I would have told you I did and believed it superficially, but I was too busy trying to help and support others and make them happy and thus my health and wellbeing was lost in the shuffle. I told myself that I was strong and could take it and became a martyr in my own mind, and I chose to suffer in silence because deep down I thought I deserved it. I was really good at making myself feel miserable and putting myself down. My view and actions towards others was inspiring and optimistic but my thoughts about myself and my place in this world were anxious, depressing, and brought in more negative thoughts and emotions reinforced by my own inner critic. The weight of this negativity became palpable both physically and mentally. I did myself no favors.

When I started meditating and went on a Vipassana Retreat I started to become aware of my stress, my thoughts, and the emotions I was carrying. I began to see for the first time how profoundly angry I was at my position in life and how much it was influencing my daily habits and relationships with others, including my relationship with myself, which brings to mind the story of the two wolves:

***

The Two Wolves

A Native American elder was teaching his young grandson about life.

 “I have a fight going on inside me,” the old man said to the young boy. “It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, self-doubt and ego.

The other good- he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith.

 The same fight is going on inside you and every other person, too.”

 The child took a moment to reflect on this. At last, he looked up at his grandfather and asked, “Which wolf will win?”

 The old Cherokee gave a simple reply. “The one you feed.”

***

We can all relate to this story on some level. What I’ve learned through my own work in mindfulness meditation and other meditative, yogic techniques, and regression therapy is that we are often the only one standing in our path. We are the obstacle. Once I realized that my own thoughts and feelings of inferiority, self-doubt, and anger- that I was solely responsible for were of no service to myself or anyone in my life and that I could let that go, because eventually I learned that “I AM LOVED.”

Remember that the obstacle becomes the path. I was the obstacle, so I had to work on myself in order to find my freedom, peace, and love. Don’t make the mistake of looking outside yourself for happiness. No person or treasure will complete you or make you happy, it comes from within. By learning to counter my inner critic with a kind and loving inner compassionate coach I could start to build myself up and mold my intentions, thoughts, and actions with greater awareness, self-realization, and determination.

One practice tip on how to talk to yourself is to imagine what you might say to your best friend who is going through a difficult time. It is probably different than how you talk to yourself. Start talking to yourself with a positive tone using those uplifting words, love, and encouragement towards yourself. Be honest with yourself but build yourself up. Love yourself.

***

Exercise: use this affirmation while in prayer, meditation, or in an auto-suggestive state of contemplation or journaling. State the affirmation several times aloud, confidently, and with clear intention. Your word is a cosmic vibration and sets the stage for your success. After you have stated the affirmation aloud several times you may say it softly and then say it mentally. Write it down. You can be creative and make your own affirmation to suit yourself and present situation.

“I AM LOVED.”

“I AM WORTHY.”

“I AM CAPABLE.”

***

When you have soaked the affirmation into the roots of your mind and felt emotion while doing so you will have felt a shift or lightness. Repeat the exercise as often as is needed. You may even choose to do what I do sometimes and listen to Foreigner’s “I want to know what love is.” Music is energy.

When you love yourself, you will see yourself in a different light. Love is truth. Love is light. With greater awareness your thoughts and emotions will start to align effortlessly to loving yourself, loving others, and touching more positive thinking and emotions. Believe in the miracle of possibilities.

 

 

 

 

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