I've been talking a lot about the role of God in your spiritual development, and also in achieving your goals in life. I've mentioned that trust in God is vital, of course.
Yet there are some steps we can take personally as well. We have tools that God has given each of us, which we can utilize to give us the best chance to live the life we want to live.
What tool in particular am I talking about? It's the subconscious mind.
What Is the Subconscious Mind?
If you followed any of my articles or videos from last year, you know that I discussed the subconscious quite a bit. Lately, I've been a little bit hesitant, because I was trying to figure out how the subconscious mind could fit into a spiritual framework, specifically into a belief in a supreme God.
When one studies about the subconscious mind, there is sometimes the tendency to make more of it than there really is. Sometimes, people will ascribe very God-like attributes to the subconscious mind, which of course I think is unfounded. For instance, many will say that the subconscious has the power to draw to you events that match your beliefs. This is false, though it can often look like that.
Yet, I knew that the subconscious mind existed. In fact, it is a very useful tool. I just wasn't ready to introduce it back into my toolbox yet. Now, I have changed this.
So, what exactly is the subconscious mind? The subconscious has three basic roles:
First, it is a behavior automater. You've heard it said I'm sure that we are creatures of habit. Well, the subconscious is the mechanism by which our habitual nature is developed and executed.
For instance, when you learned how to type, at first it was very awkward. You had to search for each individual letter. Over time, you got faster and faster at it, because you start to know intuitively where each letter was. This was your subconscious mind taking over and automating the process of typing. If you had to painstakingly think about where each letter was, it would take you all day to write a simple e-mail.
Second, it is also a processing engine. It filters all of the input data through your sensory inputs. It takes your seeing, hearing, feeling, tasting, and smelling sensory inputs, and organizes them into a cohesive experience.
But it doesn't do a perfect job at this. Your subconscious processes your sensory data through filters, consisting of your subconscious beliefs. Your subconscious above all wants to be internally consistent. If some experience can possibly differ from your own beliefs, it will filter that data in such a way so that either (1) it doesn't seem to contradict at all, or (2) you can dismiss that experience as useless.
For instance, if you have the belief that people don't like you, but in your experience, someone is friendly, then your subconscious will filter it in such a way that you think they are actually trying to use you, or demean you. You might think to yourself, “Oh, he just wants something from me. How dare he use me like that? How typical.” And, your belief is thus preserved.
Third, it is a goal machine. I mentioned already the beliefs that your subconscious mind has. It will do its best to make these beliefs come true. Not only will it filter your external experiences to be consistent with your beliefs, but it will also make you behave in such a way as to validate the belief. For this reason, it is essential to get the subconscious mind in line for achieving your goals.
For instance, if you believe that money is hard to earn, then your subconscious mind is going to filter your experiences to only show you those opportunities that would allow you to earn very little, or require a lot of work. Technically you'll “see” the other opportunities there, but you'll dismiss them, or simply not believe you're qualified. This can be very subtle, and is hard to catch, unless a 3rd party points out what you're doing.
That's essentially what the subconscious mind is. There are a few extra additional roles, but aren't really relevant to this discussion.
It's important to point out that the subconscious mind's influence is only over you, individually. It has no power to literally change the world around you, though it might look like it sometimes. It has no power to “attract” certain experiences. It's job is mainly to filter your sensory inputs, and then to make certain behaviors easier than others, namely those behaviors that will continue to achieve the goals it believes it needs to achieve.
Where Does God Enter In?
So, if it doesn't do those things, why does it seem that the world changes when we change our beliefs?
Firstly, part of it is simply that more of your experience is available to you now. If there is white light, but you have a filter that only allows the red spectrum to get through, you'll think that there is only red light. If you replace it with a blue filter, then suddenly it seems like the light has changed, when really it's your own filter that has changed. It's amazing how many different ways the same experience can be interpreted.
However, I also admit that this can't account for everything. Quite often, if you change your belief about the ease of earning money, or how much you deserve to make, more money will almost instantly start flowing to you. Why is this?
I've mentioned repeatedly about my experience last year, when I started realizing that the good things happening to me were not just a response to my so-called “vibration”, but was actually a direct blessing from God. However, I feel I had to make room for that blessing, first. I had to clean up my own mind, if you will, before I could open to greater things.
I believe that God wants to bless us. However, He has the big picture. He also wants us to be spiritually healthy. Part of that means cleaning up these limiting beliefs which block His blessings from flowing in our lives. When we have a belief like “Money is hard to earn,” and we feel upset about that, we are actually not trusting in God.
Does clearing up limiting beliefs around, say, money, mean that you will become a millionaire? No. As I said, clearing up these beliefs is just your part of the equation. God's part is to give you what is most suitable. It doesn't mean that money will instantly begin falling from the sky.
Sometimes, in fact, it might take a little while, because God is testing your trust. This is not a cosmic vending machine, as the LOA tends to see things. God has your best interest at heart, and sometimes that is an increase in money, and sometimes it is not.
You might ask, “So what's the point, then? If I do this inner work, I may or may not get money. And if I don't do this inner work, I may or may not get money. What's the difference?”
That's why I've been harping on the importance of surrender and trust. Once you have begun to clear up these beliefs, then God will work. Actually, He will always be working, pointing out where your limiting beliefs are, often by way of negative experiences. If you are working toward achieving your goals, He will point out where you are resisting those goals. As you clear up that resistance, then achieving your goals becomes more effortless.
It might help if you see this as a journey, instead of a single step. Sometimes when you are traveling to a desired destination, you might pass through places that aren't so desirable. However, you trust that in time, you will get there. Similarly with the spiritual journey, you trust that you are moving towards the destination of greater happiness and satisfaction in life. That might include more money, better relationships, a better job, etc. Or it may include simply knowing that when there's a need, God will meet it.
I don't mean all of the above to say you won't get the things you desire. If you are sincere, God always answers your supplications. However, sometimes we are tested in the short-term. Poverty might be a test of trust. Will you complain about how unfair everything is? Or will you look at what you do have and be grateful?
Once we begin to trust in God, and believe that He will bless us, then that will unlock the door to His blessings in our lives. Things will begin to miraculously work out for us, because we have begun to rely on Him.
This is why I encourage meditating on His Attributes. As you meditate on His Attributes, I find that you come to know Him even better through that Attribute, and that Attribute begins to manifest in your life. As that happens, you become more confident in approaching God through that Attribute, and others as well.
I'll give an example. I'd been calling on God through His Name of Al-Mughni, The Enricher. As I did so, there was of course some hesitation, some doubtfulness. It's like if someone tells you that your new friend is a kind person. The first time you call upon him to be kind, you might wonder whether what you heard was indeed correct. There's a marked difference between knowing someone by what you hear about them, and knowing them because you've experienced them personally. Only when that friend shows you kindness personally, do you really begin to trust that he is kind.
And so it was. I knew that God was Al-Mughni, because it is said to be one of His Attributes. Yet, I had had limited experience of it on my own.
As I did this, however, things began to happen in my own life. He began to bless me in incredible ways. I won't list them here, but in only a few days after consistently meditating on this Attribute and praying for Him to work in my life, things started to change.
Now as they have done so, I have more confidence that indeed, He is Al-Mughni. There is much less doubt there now. I have a deeper knowledge of who God is thanks to how He has blessed me, and how He has worked in my own life.
But guess what? First, I had to trust enough in God as Al-Mughni for Him to respond. I had to believe sufficiently. That required me clearing up my own subconscious blocks to greater abundance, which I've been successfully working on for some months now. I could look back through my life and see how God has already blessed me, which gave me even more confidence to begin with.
So you see, clearing out these limiting beliefs is not the key to instant success. But, it is the first step to a deeper, richer relationship with God, and the first step to even more blessings in your own life.