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October - November 2009
Brahma Kumari, Sister Shivani from Delhi, India talks about how to uplift yourself every day
The current situation in many countries is such that most have lost hope in the government, relationships, finding job. The disparity makes it hard to be motivated. How do people deal with this?
Positive thinking is not having positive thoughts when circumstances are good, this is normal thinking. Positive thinking is when the right thoughts are created in unfavourable situations. So far we have believed that our thoughts are linked to the environment around us, it’s just so natural that when there is a crisis outside, there will be a crisis inside. But spirituality teaches us that what is inside is independent from what is outside. There could be a little crisis outside, but if I can perceive and create a thought of stability and I create a thought of an opportunity instead of a challenge there is no crisis inside. The main objective is to take care of what is inside then the crisis outside can be dealt with. For example the financial crisis is a crisis outside but the result of not having inner stability is the deterioration in our emotional, mental, physical well being as well as in our relationships. If I take care of myself I can take care of all other aspects and clear the hurdles. Spirituality helps me create the right kind of thoughts even if there is a crisis out there.
Please give us some background on yourself.
I am from Delhi, India and have been with the Brahma Kumaris (BKs) for 12 years. I have a degree in engineering and even when studying everything ran smoothly in my life and I was not looking for spirituality. However, at the BKs I saw that a lot of youth were being able to channel their energy by thinking positively and not creating thoughts of fear or apprehension about the future, as this takes away from your energy for other activities. Let me be in the present moment and work on it now rather than think about tomorrow and what might happen. This is what prompted me to be here.
How can we change our thoughts when the environment is so negative? How can the negative energy help you in positive thinking?
Negative energy needs to be blocked from the inside. If, for example, I start the morning reading all the news that covers the bad things happening, this will sway my mind in the same direction. What we do at the BKs is not to read the newspaper first thing in the morning but instead get up and read something very powerful and positive. That is, irrespective of whatever is happening, I still have the choice as to what to create in my mind. There is always an opportunity hidden away and I have to be ready for it and deal with it. If I am in fear, confusion, and insecurity I cannot see the opportunity. Now, if someone wants to overcome a challenge, they can only do it if they take care of the kind of thoughts they create. One thought I create every morning is that everything that is happening to me is beneficial for me, it’s accurate and perfect and could not be better and I just accept every scene that comes before me after that.
As a radio presenter I know that we highlight all the headlines which are normally negative. How can I help the listener out there?
Science tells us that the mind is most absorbent in the first two hours in the morning, like clean blotting paper. After that, we absorb less and all the subsequent information does not sink in so deeply; providing I prepare myself in the early morning and fill the mind with something powerful then that negativity will not be absorbed so much. Therefore, it is a choice as to how we fill the mind each morning. This is where spiritual knowledge comes in. Visiting a BK centre every morning before beginning each day, we listen to powerful lessons and this is what I fill my mind with, first thing in the morning.
Turning to Brother Pascal - as a youth who has been practising positive thinking - please share your experiences.
One thing I would like people to understand is that the youth have two kinds of energies - spiritual and physical. We do not seem to understand that these energies can be used positively or negatively, and we are deeply influenced by those we call leaders who may often have negative ambitions. What we need to learn is to understand ourselves and utilise and channel this energy in a positive way and in a manner that benefits both ourselves and other people.
If we are not supposed to allow the negative outside to affect us, what do we do with those situations and emotions, of love for example, that are affecting us both within us and outside?
You need to understand that you create your own thoughts and our problem is that we do not know how to manage our thoughts. As a result, we are influenced by outside situations because we are not in control of ourselves. If I understand that I create my own thoughts, I can choose what thoughts to create and then I have the power to influence the situation around me by changing my attitude or response to the situation. This is something we have to practise even though it can seem a difficult thing to do. For example, someone might show anger towards me. I can either feel offended that this person is not respecting me or I can think that he is showing me anger as a result of his own stresses.
The youth, age group 18 to 24, experience the most problems with matters of the heart, please give us your ideas on that topic.
I would say rather than matters of the heart, it is about relationships. Nowadays we are looking for relationships in order for the other person to give us happiness, love, and respect and this can be any relationship between child and parent or partners. We demand these from the other rather than giving it, as we have forgotten that relationship means giving not taking. When we do not get the responses we want then pain comes. Love and pain cannot exist together. If I am hurt or in pain it is not love. For example, creating doubts and anxiety when a friend does not call is not love. Love means unconditionally accepting the other person, however they are and whoever they are. I love you means I like you the way you are. This sends positive energy from me to them. The minute I become judgemental and try to change the other person it is not the energy of love but energy of resistance and that is when the conflict starts, first within me then in the relationship and so the problem begins.
I have read the Magic of Thinking Big, which contains a really positive message that has worked in my life. It says that it begins in the morning, the way you tell yourself, your body, your energy, to act for you or do it for you which goes a long way. You are the master of your thoughts, how true is that?
You are absolutely the creator of your thoughts and that is the fundamental thing. I have a choice what thought to create in any situation. We wake up in the morning and spend five minutes with ourselves creating very powerful positive thoughts; for example, I am a powerful being, creator of every thought and feeling; happiness is my nature not something I get from outside; happiness is stability and I do not need to buy or do anything to get happiness; happiness is what I already am. I talk to myself in my mind for 5 min first thing in the morning, then pause again for one minute every hour and create the powerful thought “I am a powerful being, peace, love and happiness is my nature” and the mind remains stable throughout the day with no fluctuations.
Wonderful, everyone can try that! But how can one living in poverty for a long time think positively?
Your poverty does not affect your mind. Your mind creates your thoughts irrespective of your financial situation. If thoughts are affected by financial status then the ultra-rich should be very positive but that is not the case. Your thinking is not dependent on your financial situation. There is no connection, but we have connected it. Money and status are all outside, but our mind is inside.
Can poverty control someone’s thinking?
No, poverty does not control thinking, thinking can control poverty.
Forget about all external situations and let us start taking care of ourselves and all those situations will fall into place. Even though what we have shared today might sound difficult, it is very simple once you start working on yourselves. To do this simply we would like to invite you to come to any BK Centre – you can find them at www.bkwsu.org. There, you will find many different courses throughout the world, all of which are free. If we can do something for our minds absolutely free, it becomes a matter of taking the time to do it.
(An extract from an interview on Ghetto Radio, a Dutch station in Nairobi, Kenya.)
POINT TO PONDER
Make yourself completely free from the past
and experience the present as a gift from GOD.
Think before you act. Be patient. Forgive & forget. Love one and all. If you judge people, you have no time to love them.