Doubt and fear are the enemies of knowledge

“Doubt and fear are the great enemies of knowledge, and she who encourages them, who does not slay them, thwarts herself at every step.” — As A Man Thinketh

I’ve heard it said that we’re born with only a few fears — like the fear of falling and the fear of loud noises. All other fears we learn along the way. Like the fear of failure, the fear of rejection – even a fear of success. I believe our greatest enemy in life is fear, because fear keeps us from doing many of those things we would like to do that would make our life more complete and more enjoyable.

Doubt is the first cousin of fear and precedes it. We weren’t born with doubt. Our habit of doubt has grown throughout our life. If we dwell on a doubt and give in to it, it then grows into fear. In his epistle, the ancient writer James reminds us that doubt makes us ineffective, “a doubtful mind will be as unsettled as the wave of the sea that is tossed and driven by the wind; and every decision you then make will be uncertain, as you turn first this way, and then that.”

If most of our fears and all of our doubts are learned along the way, then we can “unlearn” them by becoming masters of our thoughts. I once heard Zig Ziglar quote Mark Twain when he said, “True courage is not the absence of fear, it’s the mastery of fear.” The people who live the life of their dreams have just as many fears as those who live miserable, unfulfilled lives – they have just learned to master their fears instead of allowing their fears to master them.

Norman Vincent Peale, writing in You Can If You Think You Can, provides us with a prescription for mastering fear and doubt. “You can cancel out fear with faith. For there is no force in this world more powerful than faith. The most amazing things can happen as a result of it…There are two massive thought forces competing for control of the mind: fear and faith, and faith is stronger, much stronger. Hold that thought of faith’s greater power until you believe it, for it can be the difference between success and failure.”

And that’s worth thinking about.

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The Magic is in YOU!

“When he realizes that he is a creative power, and that he may command the hidden soil and seeds of his being out of which circumstances grow; he then becomes the rightful master of himself.” — As A Man Thinketh

Recently I was reading an old classic, The Message of a Master by John McDonald, and I was rocked by an incredibly insightful passage: “The cause of the confusion prevailing in your mind that weakens your thoughts is the false belief that there is a power or powers outside you greater than the power within you.”

Stop and think about that. What keeps us from attempting greater things — from reaching for the brass ring in our life? What makes us take that great idea that could make our family financially secure and bury it underneath a lot of reasons why it’d never work? What stops us from that career change that would result in working in a profession we could really enjoy, could get passionate about?

There’s only one thing that EVER stops us from forward momentum and McDonald nailed it: “the false belief that there is a power or powers outside you greater than the power within you.”

As I once heard a speaker say, “The magic is in YOU!” As James Allen tells us, once we realize that we can create our circumstances, then, and only then, are we truly the master of our life and our destiny.

Regardless of your particular spiritual beliefs, you may find these words from the Gospel of John very enlightening, “He that believeth on me, the works that I do, shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do.” That would indicate to me that we are already “endowed” with the power to do amazing things — far more amazing than most of us will ever attempt — if we’d only understand and BELIEVE that the power is within, not without.

And that’s worth thinking about

Good health begins in the mind

“Disease and health, like circumstances, are rooted in thought. Sickly thoughts will express themselves through a sickly body.” — Path to Prosperity

Almost 100 years ago James Allen wrote these words in his book, Path to Prosperity: “in the near future, the fact that all disease has its origin in the mind will become common knowledge.”

He would be honored to know that a June, 1997 story in the Wall Street Journal said that HMOs were reporting that as much as 70 percent of all visits to a primary care physician were for a psychosomatic illness — a disorder that involves both mind and body.

According to Dr. David Sobel, a primary care physician and author of the highly respected Mind-Body Health Newsletter, only 16 percent of people who visit their physician for common maladies like nausea, headache and stomach upset are diagnosed with a physical, organic cause. That means that a whopping 84% are suffering from an illness that originated in THOUGHT!

The evidence suggests that in most cases today we are thinking and talking our way to sickness and disease, or as Bob Proctor puts it: “dis–ease.”

Jeff Keller, writing in Attitude is Everything, says, “it makes absolutely no sense to keep repeating that you have “chronic back pain that will never go away” or that you get “three or four bad colds every year.” By uttering these statements, you are actually instructing your body to manifest pain and disease.”

In his book A Clear Path to Healing, Dr. Barry Weinberg writes, “The creation of health, as in all creations, must first start in the mind. Once the mind is made up and the commitment and unwavering determination to heal has been made, healing is inevitable.”

And that’s worth thinking about.

Living on Purpose

“Until thought is linked with purpose there is no intelligent accomplishment.” – As A Man Thinketh

In her book, Unstoppable, Cynthia Kersey writes that a prominent psychologist asked 3,000 people, “What have you to live for?” An amazing 94% answered by saying they had no definite purpose for their lives – 94% percent!! With those kind of results, is it any wonder that there are so many unhappy people in our world today?

James Allen also tells us on this subject that, “They who have no central purpose in their life fall an easy prey to worries, fears, troubles, and self-pity.” When I was part of the 94% without a purpose, my life was constantly dark with all types of worries, fears and troubles. I was a ship without a rudder floating aimlessly in a raging sea. Nothing in my life seemed to go right.

I believe we were created with a purpose in our heart, and part of our journey here is to discern that purpose and to act on that purpose.

Purpose puts power and excitement in our lives. It keeps us from looking at the little picture of “me” and causes us to look at the big picture of “we.”

Ralph Marston, who writes The Daily Motivator, says “Your wishes, desires, hopes, dreams, opinions, likes and dislikes, at their very deepest level, revolve around a purpose. You can sense it. It is there. Pay attention to the times you really feel good about yourself. Ask yourself why this is so. Keep asking until you touch a purpose so fundamental it cannot be explained in any other way.”

Napoleon Hill, writing in the classic Think and Grow Rich, said that having a purpose was so important to success that people would have a different (and better) story to tell about their lives “if only they would adopt a DEFINITE PURPOSE, and stand by that purpose until it had time to become an all-consuming obsession!”

And that’s worth thinking about.