I just read an article in the current Science of Mind Magazine by Dennis Merrit Jones about being guardians of our thoughts, about holding the “high watch.” Remember in olden times, when they built fortresses around a city? A sentinel or guard would stand high above the fortress in a tower and watch to see who was coming. If it was an enemy of the city, he would be able to let everyone know so they were prepared to take up arms.
I love this idea as related to our minds. So many thoughts come and go in our minds. I think we can all agree that we think a lot of thoughts every moment, and that they are not all in our best interest. We sometimes act like we have no control over this. Like our minds were not even ours, like someone else had control of them. No! We are the guardians of our minds and we have the choice of what we allow ourselves to dwell on.
What if we just acted like one of those sentinels? Could we picture ourselves saying, “Halt! Who goes there? Be ye friend or foe?” If the thought was not in our best interest, we would send it on its way. Really, we get to make the choice to dwell on the thought or not.
One thing I know is that we cannot think of two things at once. Try it right now. Think of a beautiful experience you had and at the same time think of something that disturbs your peace of mind. It’s impossible. We are as Ernest Holmes and others have said, “single-minded.” There is a quote from Ernest Holmes related to in the article I mentioned that says, “No living soul can demonstrate two things at the same time if one contradicts the other.”
How true this is! If we wonder why our lives are sometimes all over the place. Of course they are if our thoughts are all over the place. There is something we can do. We can become single-minded. We can choose to dwell on those things that please us, those things we want to experience. We can stop taking the negative in and excusing it by telling ourselves we can’t help it. We can help it. We might not be able to control what’s happening in the world, but we can control how we think about it, how we respond to it, and how much of it we choose to allow to occupy our thinking.
I think the serenity prayer is a good one for these days, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference.” There is so much power in these words.
Of course, I do not believe in an outside God. That God Presence is right where I am. I get to call upon It and allow it to fill my mind with its Presence. When I do, I begin to think from the highest place. I see things a lot differently.
For me, it is the way I want to spend my mind time. It’s worth all the practice, all the praying, and all the patience. Also, the more I do it, the easier it gets. I no longer see the world the same way. Instead of forecasting doom and gloom, I see everything as a pathway to peace. I am here to help to be a peaceful presence. I do my best to do and be this.
Again, we cannot control others, but the more we fill our minds with thoughts of happy and pleasant outcomes, no matter what we are experiencing, staying in the present moment and holding that high watch for good, the more life shows up that way.
Next time we are tempted to just let our minds run wild, let’s remember there is a sentinel there. It is the Presence of Light and Love itself. It is standing guard. We are not alone. We have all the power in the Universe to back us.