Don’t judge, observe. I know this is easier said than done, but what am I referring to exactly? People, places, and things? No, I’m referring to our personal thoughts. I’ve been dancing all around this lately, both internally and on this platform. That said, I feel I’ve been too ambiguous for some while being too esoteric for others. I intend to convey a more defined and refined point this go-around. I intend for the reader to not be so intimidated, joy-sticked, and confused by thoughts, as well as to notice something deep within. You can’t master something until you can teach it.

            First off, I don’t judge. I now know this to be thinly-veiled bulls*** right there. Some people are kind enough to say this as a warning that they are totally judging you then and there. Not sure who they’re foolin’. Themselves maybe. Honestly, we all judge. It’s how we’re built, so why not be honest about it? I am asking you to use that innate labeling system in a new and innovative way. Now, as you sit reading this, take two or three minutes and simply observe your thoughts. Give yourself permission to judge later, as we must.

There, that already feels more realistic, doesn’t it?

            After spending those few minutes observing yourself, what did you find out? Your answers will vary from I am a sack of s*** to he’s a sack of s*** to delusions of grandeur and everything in between. If you were able to simmer down for just a second or two during those few minutes, (transpersonal experiences don’t need long to make a lasting impression) what, rather, who did you sense? Were you able to notice the watcher within? If not, that’s okay, this test is not timed. Like Dori, “Just keep swimming.”

            What I’m talking about is the Higher Self or Oversoul. But, the question remains, what did you observe? Do the exercise over again in a quieter moment, if you must, but answer that question for yourself. Rinse and repeat as often as you can or desire.

            Some, like Eckhart Tolle, have referred to this unique observation as the “Watcher”. Now, here’s the core question I’d like to think this “Watcher” would want us to ask: Do thoughts create feelings and emotions or is it the other way around? It’s important how you answer this question. What I am endeavoring to ferret out are ways that we victimize ourselves without even knowing it. Does an elite few want the masses to be mindless? I think so, but that’s a delicious conspiracy theory for another day.

            How can we begin to shift this focus? First off, like G.I. JOE, knowing is half the battle. I recommend becoming a peeping Tom on your thoughts. It’s not been outlawed yet like some other tom-foolery. The other side of this is where all sorts of dogmatic and scholastic points-of-view are offered. Are we not taught from an early age, don’t think, just do?

Is it realistic that all will learn at the same speed and manner? Just because one person is faster on the uptake, doesn’t mean that person needs the special education class. Do we not study for the right answer rather than studying how to find the right answer? All this begins at an early age, can continue into grad school, and beyond.

When we graduate from whatever level of education and tradition we inevitably find that we need to think outside the box even though we were never trained in such a way. Has innovation ever come from inside the box? No, innovation demands a new box nobody has ever seen before. This new box is often mocked, ignored, or persecuted.

            There’s no need to worry about the devil inside once you are aware. While ignorance can be thought of as blissful, it rarely involves that key element of growth, does it? The point of no return is fictional. Just like you can find a fight every day of your life, you can always find structure and someone to zealously enforce it, regardless of whether it fits with today’s times or not. Traditions certainly matter, but what alchemy forged a tradition to begin with, if not that thrill of feeling like it’s fresh and new?

            Back to the original question regarding thoughts. Until we take ownership of our thoughts, we’ll be a slave to them. By ownership, I certainly don’t mean an iron, white-knuckle grip. I mean an acknowledgement and a willingness to hold these thoughts in your hand like a bird. You don’t want to crush the bird, but you don’t want it escaping until you’ve squared away a safe place to release it to the nature from which it came.

If you allow, noticing a thought drop into the DM’s of your mind can be enlightening. These bullies are usually recurring and shame-filled. When the bully penetrates your sacred psyche, notice the bump-bump of your heart. Notice your breath or an unpleasurable, barely audible, moan. Acknowledge, rather than ignore, such things that gurgle up like the swimming pool in the backyard of the house in Poltergeist.

           What lessons does this teach us? Hopefully we can eventually file it under a “beautiful mistakes” category. We must label, so why resist?

          It’s when you become comfortable with your warts and all, that true inner peace can be had.