Welcome to this eight-part series in which we explore the wonderful, powerful, and empowering world of our intellectual faculties. Every advancement, every success, every innovation, every fortune mankind has made has its source in the greatest power in all of creation – the mind. The mind has been described as “the greatest power in all creation”. Indeed, we are endowed with higher mental faculties designed to make us the highest form of creation on earth. Each one of us, yes, each one of the 7.6 billion odd people on earth, has the six extraordinary gifts which, when put to good use, will elevate every person to extraordinary levels of achievement. We all have infinite potential and there is no limit to what we can achieve. “What lies before you and what lies behind you are tiny matters compared to what lies within you.” This inspirational statement by Ralph Waldo Emerson provides a good entry point to share on the subject of our higher mental faculties, the six extraordinary gifts of the mind. These are:
We are all born with them but sadly, because of self-imposed limitations, very few people ever fully utilize them. And yet we can take full advantage of these mental faculties if we choose to do so. Yes, it will require effort, but the rewards far outweigh the input. These higher faculties are what separate us from the rest of the animal kingdom. Today, at the touch of a button, you can talk to associates, friends, loved ones who are thousands of kilometres away. Mankind has sent spaceships to explore space and the planets including the sun! We are exploring the deepest oceans and developing cures for all manner of diseases. All these inventions were at some stage just pictures on the screen of the mind of the inventor. Our imagination knows no limits and each one of us has access to these higher faculties. Tap into them, tap into the greatest power in all creation and create a better world for all of us to enjoy.
Over the next six episodes, we will discuss each of the six faculties to encourage you to utilize them to create the life you want. The life you really want is within your grasp if you can simply stop the outside world from controlling your mind and begin to live from the inside out. Join me next week as we embark on this amazing journey of self-discovery.
Part 1 – Perception.
Welcome to our discussion of the first of the six higher mental faculties – Perception. The Oxford dictionary defines perception as “the ability to see, hear, or become aware of something through the senses”. We have all heard of the statement “perception is reality” which essentially means that your mental impression of something defines how you see that something, regardless of the truth. Your perception is a marvelous tool waiting to be used to change your life, to change your world. When you begin to use your perception the challenges that are seemingly destined to overwhelm you will disappear, they will be gone. In their place, you will see that you are surrounded by opportunities and possibilities which you never saw before even though they were always there just waiting for you to discover them!
I am going to ask you to do an exercise for me. Select a challenge or problem that is bedevilling you right now. Write it down on a piece of paper, yes, a piece of paper, in as much detail as you can. Place the piece of paper in the middle of a table, or middle of your desk. Take a seat on one end of the table or desk and try to resolve the challenge whilst looking at the paper. Spend some time doing this. If you cannot resolve the issue, physically move from where you are seated and go round to the opposite end of the table or desk and try to resolve the challenge from that new position. The act of physically moving from one position to another should cause a shift within you causing you to see the challenge from another perspective. The answer to all our challenges is already here, it is simply our perception that tells us we cannot solve the problem. When we change the way we perceive the problem, the problem itself changes.
Most people are not happy with who they are. Why? Because of the perception, they hold of themselves. Change that perception and begin to look at yourself differently and suddenly the way you feel about yourself changes. Change your point of view of yourself and you will change yourself. You will change your world. The way you look at yourself and everything around you is called your paradigm. Your paradigm is a multitude of habits that control the way you see the world and almost all your behaviour is habitual. It is your ‘operating system’ or your ‘belief system’. Sadly many people go through their entire lives and to their graves being controlled by the paradigm. Even though they may not like the results in their lives they are held captive by the paradigm and consequently they never live their lives to their full potential. You don’t have to be one of them. Know that you can change your paradigm and free yourself from its shackles to become a person whose results match the ‘new and improved’ perception of yourself.
Each of us has what has been described as ‘our own last and eternal freedoms’. This is the choice we have to decide how to respond to any circumstance or situation. Our paradigm almost always dictates our responses to any stimulus. Our environment has hardwired our responses into our subconscious minds. Our responses are therefore automatic. However, there is hope! I want you to know that there is a ‘you,’ inside of you, that has choices, that doesn’t have to respond automatically but can pause, even for a split second, to choose a response that aligns with your perception of yourself, not with your paradigm. You have the power to choose a perception in the midst of any experience. It’s a power no one can ever take away from you, it is indeed your ‘last and eternal freedom’. Tap into it to change your world.
Your perception is a powerful tool. You can use it to shape your reality by shaping all the information coming at you whichever way you choose, just like the craftsman shapes molten glass into whatever shape he chooses. “ When you change the way you look at something, the thing you look at changes”, this statement is very much on point. By changing that negative perception of yourself, as small, not valuable, inconsequential, etc to “I am worthy, I am somebody, I am fearfully and wonderfully made” you will awaken the giant inside of you. A giant ready and waiting to take advantage of opportunities and make a difference to the world. Take advantage of this higher mental faculty and it will have a profound impact on your life.