“Thought is not reality; yet it is through Thought that our realities are created.” Sydney BanksSydney Banks, the Scottish welder who first articulated the Three Principles after an enlightenment experience suggested that Thought was the energy of the intelligence behind life coming alive within each of us, moment to moment.
One of the most challenging things to grasp in this understanding is that we live in the feeling of our thinking, not in the feeling of our experiences. We react to what we’re thinking, not to what is happening outside of us.
When we step back and look at our nighttime dreams we can see this principle in action. Dreams are a great metaphor for how life really works.
Dreams Appear Real
When we’re dreaming the dream it feels like reality. Even when crazy things are going on and animals are talking or we’re flying like Superman, it feels completely real. We buy into everything that’s going on in the dream as though it were actually happening.
And yet, it isn’t. The dream is a movie being played out, brought to life within us by Thought.
It’s the same with life. The energy of Thought is coming to life within us and it is creating our reality, just like we experience in a dream.
Dreams Cause Us to Feel
Have you ever woken up from a dream in tears, or laughing, or scared? Even though the thing that caused you to feel those feelings wasn’t real. You weren’t really being chased by a bear. Or you weren’t really sitting at a dinner table with Mr. Bean. Yet you experienced the feelings that come along with those events. You felt scared by the bear. You laughed at Mr. Bean.
(Coincidentally, I had a dream last night that involved the Vicar of Dibley and I woke myself up laughing.) 😉
It’s the same with life when you’re awake. We don’t react to our circumstances. We react to our thoughts.
We Don’t Control the Dream
In our waking lives, we tend to operate under the illusion that we’re in control. That control is a double-edged sword. It can make us feel safe, but it can also frighten us when we realize how little control we actually have.
In a dream, we can clearly see (perhaps once the dream is over) that we have very little control over what’s happening. It can all seem like a crazy movie.
Our waking life is the same.
The intelligence behind life is flowing through us, Thought coming to life moment to moment. We don’t control any of that.
We don’t control what we think or how we feel. I know this can seem absurd, but when we take a tiny step back and look at our experience of life objectively, we can see that this is the case.
Leaning into this idea – I think of it as relaxing into the flow of a river, rather than fighting the current – can ease stress and anxiety.
I offer this post as a guide for those who are struggling with the concept of Thought, as Sydney Banks articulated it. Looking at what happens to us when we dream while we’re asleep is a great way to deepen our understanding of how Thought works.Are you the dreamer? Or the one being dreamed? Please leave your thoughts below and join the conversation.