When we make a choice it is a logical, rational decision made between two or more options. It often involves an analytical cognitive thinking process within the cerebral cortex, or fore brain.
Humans are not born with the ability to think in this way; it is learnt. Children do not appear to have the ability to think analytically until about the age of seven, when their consciousness breaks the surface. Before that they are largely thinking unconsciously.
Unconscious thinking is instinctive. It occurs mainly in the ganglia and the base of the brain. This portion of the brain is sometimes referred to as the reptilian brain, or bird-brain as it is the original brain of mammals and other higher order animals. Birds, fish and reptiles only have this early brain, and they are only capable of instinctive thought.We humans like to think we make our decisions logically and analytically, however our instincts have an important role in the choices we make too.
The things that make instinct so strong in our decision making are emotions.
Emotions are as natural as instinct, and they are all around us before birth. Think about where you feel emotions. Emotions are not felt in the head, and they are not felt in the arms and legs. We feel our emotions in the body, from the neck down.
All cultures talk about the heart being the center of love. Why not the brain? Because we all feel our love emotions right there in the center of our chest, not the head. Love is not logical and analytical – it is not in the head.
Think about fear, where is it? It is strongest right there in the middle of our stomach? That is where we feel ‘butterflies’, that is where we feel ‘queasy’. So where is an unborn baby? It spends around nine month’s right there in the middle of mother’s emotions. That is where our emotions begin – even before we are born.
Sure, an unborn baby does not understand what it is feeling, but it learns the feelings through experience. Then following birth, it learns to connect the feelings with what it sees and hears. The emotions gain meaning.
So many things are dismissed as inherited, when they are learnt from out role models.
So, what did you learn? From before birth until right now you have been learning to connect emotions to your decision-making – and those emotions control you.
Emotions are natural. Their purpose is ultimately survival. When as children we grow and learn in a loving environment, surrounded by well-adjusted, mature adults we learn how to move away from negative emotions toward positive emotions.
As we consciously learn the concepts of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ (as dictated by our role models, community, school, religion and work place), we connect them to positive and negative emotions.
These emotions reinforce our behaviors.
So, what are you going to do about it? Are you going to continue down the same path forever or are you going to change your behaviors? It is your choice.
The Conscious Mind is logical and analytical, it understands time (past, present and future), and it understands reality. The conscious mind is not constant. It turns ‘up and down’ or ‘on and off’ throughout the day, when we drift from active thought into sub-consciousness or daydreaming, and then back again.
Have you ever missed your turnoff because you were daydreaming? You were actually lost in your sub-conscious for a few minutes. We do that several times per hour, and don’t even notice consciously – because we are not conscious at that moment.
How can we make conscious decisions if we are not conscious? Of course, we cannot. We can get some inspirational ideas while we are sub-conscious, to assist in our decision-making. Some people call this process meditation. That is really what meditation is all about – becoming sub-conscious.
Where does the sub-conscious find all this inspiration?
The unconscious is much deeper. We retreat into our unconscious when we sleep, when we dream. I have crazy illogical dreams. Ideas bubble up during dreams (unconscious) and day dreaming (sub-conscious) into the conscious (fully awake), where they can be developed into logical resources.
While there are many techniques, ultimately meditation is the practice of purposeful introspection into the unconscious mind. That is exactly how Albert Einstein developed his theory of relativity. It is how Thomas Edison developed hundreds of inventions. That is how writers and musicians get their inspirational ideas.
The unconscious perceptions of emotions are ‘cyber-stored’ in our organs, including the heart, liver and kidneys. I say ‘cyber’ because the emotions are not ‘real’ tangible objects, although the unconscious mind behaves as if they are. Therefore it ‘feels’ them as if they are real, and allows them to control our decisions, our choices.
Emotions are natural. Their purpose is ultimately survival because they are supposed to move us away from the negative toward the positive, presupposing we learnt to make the correct connections.
Our learning’s then create our beliefs, which may or may not be true. Then our beliefs drive our behaviors. Habits are just apparent automatic behaviors created and maintained by the unconscious mind. When our habits of behavior trigger memories of good and bad emotions, the whole loop starts again. Most of this is so unconscious we don’t even consciously know we are doing it, and the conscious mind does not know how to change it anyway.
That is where Peter Zapfella and this web site come in, to facilitate chnage in an easy, comfortable way.
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