First Chapter Section 5

If your awareness inputs or outputs a voice of blame and negative judgment as a consequence of your life observations or experiences, you will output apathy, boredom, and helplessness, which will lead to depression (see the left side of the figure and the vicious loop). You must recognize that all of these things occur as a result of distorted views, perceptions, and previous programming (machinery).

You will get self-determination, healthy curiosity, competency, skills, self-esteem, choice, enjoyment of tasks, more defined goals, improved information gathering, doing it because it is interesting, and achievement orientation as output if you change your observation (change the input) and also set up the new machinery of mindfulness, intrinsic motivations, autonomy, integration, relatedness, and creativity. On the right side of the picture, draw a positive, friendly, or virtuous circle.

The key is to alter your perspective of the world around you. You must keep this in mind. Again, changing your perspective on the world around you is the answer.

The first stage is to alter your perception of information. Developing a youthful and/or naïve frame of mind is a very efficient approach to retrain your mind. We will teach you how to build child-like observation abilities, child-like listening skills, child-like learning skills, and child-like connections (relatedness) in this book.

Externalizing (“Externalizing”) is a therapeutic strategy that encourages individuals to objectify and, at times, personify the oppressive conditions they encounter. The issue becomes a distinct entity and hence external to the person or relationship that was labeled as the problem throughout this process, or any strategy that psychologically pulls the subjects outside of themselves and helps them to observe their own harmful behavior more objectively. This method is also aided by spiritual pathways, meditation abilities such as awareness, and even Yoga.

When you master spiritual meditation, insights about yourself, your mind, and how it operates (essentially the left half of your awareness in our diagram) will burst into your head, and this is when you can efficiently demolish it.

We obtain mental stability and concentration via spiritual meditation, and we accurately detect which components contribute to more calm and creativity.

It is freeing and illuminating because it allows negativity to be released. Enlightenment entails cleaning our thinking and letting rid of the negative influences in our life. This is a global answer that is independent of any religion or spiritual approach.

There is an old story about a famous rabbi living in Europe who was visited one day by a man who had traveled by ship from New York to see him. The man came to the great rabbi’s dwelling, a large house on a street in a European city, and was directed to the rabbi’s room, which was in the attic. He entered to find the master living in a room with a bed, a chair, and a few books. The man had expected much more. After greetings, he asked, “Rabbi, where are your things?” The rabbi asked in return, “Well, where are yours?” His visitor replied, “But, Rabbi, I’m only passing through,” and the master answered, “So am I, so am I.”

Spiritual joy and wisdom do not come through possession but rather through our capacity to open, to love more fully, and to move and be free in life.

(Source: A Path With Heart, Jack Kornfield, p. 14)

A path with a heart will also include our unique gifts and creativity. The outer expression of our hearts may be to write books, to build buildings, or to create ways for people to serve one another. It may be to teach, garden, serve food, or play music. Whatever we choose, the creations of our lives must be grounded in our hearts. Our love is the source of all energy to create and connect. If we act without a connection to the heart, even the greatest things in our lives can become dried up, meaningless, or barren.

(Source: A Path With Heart, Jack Kornfield, p. 17)

An enrichment of personality and a strengthening of character inevitably follow since the three basic elements of the mind—intellect, feeling, and will—will develop harmoniously.

Continue First Chapter Section 6