One of the 'discoveries' of depth psychology is noting the effect an emotionally charged thought can have on the conscious mind. Incidentally, this
also seems to be the basis for 'magick' and sorcery.
If, lets say, I have a fear of not being able to fall asleep, and go to bed charging this fear with constant and habitual rumination over it, I create
emotional 'charge' that will upset my ability to sleep. First, the person goes to bed with the intention of just falling asleep. This hyper focus on
sleeping exposes the person to thoughts and feelings of sleep. Oftentimes, the person will experience a perception lying in his bed of that experience
of 'not being able to sleep'. This is the experience one has when you're not quite sleeping, but you're also not awake. Instead, you feel tired, and
groggy, and tense both in mind and body. If while lying there this perception 'bursts' into consciousness, the obsessive-minded insomniac is likely to
brood over it, fighting it, which only increases the counter-pressure of the perception.
All this mental activity, if, when the person manages to lose consciousness and fall asleep, tends to serve to disrupt his quality of sleep from
beginning to end.
Therefore, our thoughts and our mental commitments become unconsciously 'rooted' in us when we think over them. This is how neuroses develop,
particularly OCD. For example, If, when walking, I have the thought "I must not walk on the crack between slabs of sidewalk" that initial perception
grips consciousness and obsesses it with that one thought. It's the emotional reaction to the thought "I don't want to" which entrains the mind to
that one thought. Paradoxically, one cannot care, should not care, whether he does or doesn't walk on the crack. This technique is called "paradoxical
intention" where the thing feared is deliberately done, which breaks the cycle between pressure and counter-pressure between the ego and the neurosis.
Now, lets say someone is in the habit of saying "I will kill myself" when someone upsets them. Is that self-affirmation of an action the first step
towards committing the action? Or is there a necessary disconnect between saying something and doing something?
If, for example, I always complain about my finances, am I going to make money? Or, if I always complain about the "evils" of war, and focus on war,
by having a 'war on war', or a 'war on drugs', or a 'war on terrorism', is this preoccupation on the negative - the thing you don't want - going to
draw the thing you want?
My own mother was someone who years ago was in the habit of saying "I'll kill myself" whenever she got very upset, and she actually attempted it a few
times. I always intuited that to be averse to a certain course of action requires a dedication and affirmation of the thing you want. So to say "I
will kill myself", may in fact inculcate an attitude of flippancy towards protecting the sanctity of life. To affirm the possibility in a time of
prosperity of "If such and such a situation would arise, I would kill myself" when that situation arises, you would be likely to kill yourself, since
you've committed yourself in the past to that coarse of action.
In my mind, you shouldn't pass judgement on the future, or say, "in such a situation, I would kill myself", as you never know what you would do when
the time arises. Suffering is undoubtedly bad. But there is a great nobility in fostering a positive attitude towards ones personal
edit on 2-11-2012 by dontreally because: (no reason given)