Brian Sullivan

Thoughts are not the self of the person; desire is. Perceiving Reality dissolves the question ״How Can I Control My Thoughts?״ into ״How Can I Change What I Desire?

Perceiving Reality: Thoughts

Ah OK, so you want to be able to control your thoughts. Of course, Because sometimes we find ourselves in a situation where we start having thoughts that we don’t want to have, so we try to grab hold of our thinking and wrestle it or direct it to where we want it to go. And if we can’t do that we feel uncomfortable, stupid, or out of control. because we assume that the way things happen is that we start to think about things, pick something to focus on, analyze, weigh, and examine it, and then, we visualize an attitude or direct our reactions and come up with an idea of what’s important or correct - and then we decide that’s worth going after and we start to do one thing or another about it in order to make that thing happen. If we could just do that, we’d be happy.

But that’s not how things happen at all. In fact it’s completely the other way round. Thought is not the starting point of our feelings and actions – The self is not thought. Thought is the product of something much deeper.

Desire is the self of a person.

First we feel a desire – we don’t think it, we just feel it. It’s desire that gives rise to thought. That’s why we only think about what we want, or why we don’t have what we want, or how to get and keep what we want. A desire brings with it an operating system to help it grow and perform its work. We can’t change our desires with thoughts, we can only magnify them. We can’t change our thoughts with our thoughts. So if we want great thoughts we need great desires, So really the question is – how do I change what I desire.

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