In general, most of us are very careless about the words we use, or consider how the words we use could be affecting our life experiences, let alone tale responsibility for them. Currently, only a relative few individuals would give credence to the possibility that the words that we use, and those used by others in our hearing, can have an affect on us psychologically as well as physically. It is believed--we have been conditioned to believe--that words are, "just words."

This idea has become even more prevalent in our modern world, especially with the younger generations, despite the development and introduction of contrary contemporary, and earlier, teachings.

If one spends time cruising the videos on YouTube, the debasement of language cannot be missed by any who are of the older generation. In particular, the use of vulgarity and insulting speech is rampant. At the same time, less and less interpersonal communication is through the use of actual speech. There have been reports indicating just how lacking many younger individuals, in particular, are in this regard, having little ability to participate in a conversation.

This deterioration, in my view, began with the advent of emails; then came Facebook, and the latest--twittering! It seems the next step in communication devolution will be grunting; many adults, and, especially, parents might respond that it has already come to that.

Perforce, this communication is directed at those who are familiar with the use of words to communicate. Nonetheless, very few of even such people are convinced of the power of the words they/we use.

It has been said by some spiritual teachers that, "thoughts are things." As thoughts are words, words are also, "things." And, they are not, in any way, inconsequential. The idea that words spoken or that thoughts can have an affect on reality, has been soundly debunked by all those who have a vested interest in your not knowing that you, personally, have power. It has, particularly, no place in the world of Scientific Thinking.

No doubt everyone has experienced the power of words to hurt us emotionally, but many would probably discount the idea that they actually have the power to change anything real--our Reality. We humans have the ability to shape our own personal reality through our words and thoughts. As evidence of this fact, something I read some time ago indicates how this is accomplished.

This example was in a book by Ruth Montgomery, who was primarily known as a political reporter; in her mature years she began to write a number of books dealing with metaphysics. ("Metaphysics" being, essentially, the study of that which is not physical.) In her earlier years, she was very much a rational/intellectual-type person, but became involved with non-physical reality through experimenting with automatic writing.

In the course of receiving information, and writing books, in this way, she was introduced to the subject of how we can create/change our own reality, by changing our thoughts. As our thoughts are as wild beasts, so it is easy to try to escape responsibility for them--they just are. It was suggested to her that she experiment with the idea of trying to change her reality by changing her thoughts.

She, as a Washington, D.C., political observer and player, had many friends as well as those whom she thought of as having enmity toward her. One woman, in particular, she considered to be such a person; this woman also felt the same toward her. Telling no one of her experiment, for the next twenty-four hours she focused on thinking nothing but positive thoughts about this person, and prayed for her well being. She also, thereafter, refrained from thinking and saying anything negative about her. The next time these two crossed paths, the other woman came up to her, embraced her, saying how happy she was to see her, etc. End of enmity. This was, for Ruth Montgomery, a profound awakening experience, and should be an eye opener for us all. I read this book, in which this story was contained, many years ago, and have never forgotten its importance.

In our current Social Commons, this basic idea has been reintroduced as the, "Law of Attraction." The concept expressed as, "Law of Attraction," is, actually an idea which refuses to die. Many older individuals are familiar with the idea through Dr. Norman Vincent Peale's book, The Power of Positive Thinking," and his presentations and other writings. (Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, May 14, 1891 - December 23, 1992, was a minister and author, most notably of The Power of Positive Thinking, and a progenitor of the idea of the power of positive thinking--Wikipedia)

It was Emile Coue, who first introduced the phrase: "Every day, in every way, I'm getting better and better, to be repeated to oneself every morning and evening. (Emile Coue de Chataigneraie {February 26, 1857 - July 2, 1926} was a French psychologist and pharmacist who introduced a method of psychotherapy and self-improvement based on optimistic autosuggestion--Wikipedia) Having not read Dr. Peale's popular writings, I do not know if he had been exposed to Coue's earlier philosophical work.

While Emile Coue, was developing his ideas in France, Florence Scovel Shinn, who wrote, The Game of Life and How to Play it, as well as several supplemental books, was quite influential in changing many peoples' lives by changing their words and thoughts, in the United States. (Florence Scovel Shinn {September 24, 1871,- October 17, 1940} was an American artist and book illustrator who became a New Thought spiritual teacher and metaphysical writer in her middle years.)

The writings of these individuals, generally categorized as, "religious" have been discounted due to the power of individuals having been Indoctrinated to believe in and discount anything which was not sanctioned by, "Scientific Thinking."

Subsequent to these individuals, Jose Silva appeared on the scene with essentially the same idea. As a young man, Jose Silva developed his ideas independently. But, he, also, proposed a mantra-like saying of, "Every day in every way, I'm getting better and better and better." Jose Silva's methods were introduced in mid-century as, "Silva Mind Control." Silva Mind Control, while controversial in some quarters, was a major change factor for many; this was brought home to me by having met some of the early followers of this method. Unfortunately, they had, over the years, more-or-less forgotten about it, only remembering when reminded.

These ideas, now introduced as the, "Law of Attraction," was brought into the Public Commons through the movie/book/video; The Secret. As indicated, this Secret has been a secret "hidden in plain sight." Those who have been exposed to The Secret, are aware that it showcased a number of current proponents of "The Law of Attraction." I, having personally followed this thread, as noted, believe these ideas can be summed up as the teaching, "thoughts are things."

Another important link, in the '60s, was the work of Maxwell Maltz, M.D.,F.I.C.S., who wrote a book called, Psycho-Cybernetics, subtitled, "A New Technique for Using Your Subconscious Power." (He, subsequently, published the same material under, at least, one other title.) This book had a powerful influence on my thinking back in my rational/intellectual days. I consider that his material goes beyond what you will find in, The Secret, for one, it does a better job of explaining how these ideas can be put to practical use in ones life.

I have given specifics about earlier influential writers, and their teaching work, in the hope that some will seek out this material and put it into practice. Finding copies their books should be relatively easy.

Taking responsibility for the words you use, and the thoughts you have, will not happen unless you accept the possibility that, every day, in every way, you are shaping your reality, for better or worse, through the fact that thoughts/words are things!

Author's Bio: 

My self-educational background has been in learning, and writing about, why people do what they do. My educational background includes the study of established Belief Systems in the field of Psychology, ranging from Freudian theory through Abraham Maslow's work on fully-functioning individuals, as well as Art. My BA is in Human Services, and my Masters is in Art Therapy--MA-AT.

In the 1970's I wrote a manuscript, (unpublished) called: You in the Process of Becoming; A Guide to the Self. In it I outlined a systems approach to understanding human behavioral dis-functioning. My current writing and thinking is an outgrowth of the understanding that, if an individual wishes to be able to think, "critically," i.e., originally, clearly and without contamination from Consensus Belief Systems, it is essential for that individual to thoroughly understand their own underlying Belief System.

This approach can be used in understanding an individual's problems in dealing with everyday situations and problems in relationships. In discovering how one's underlying beliefs shape personal behavior, and examining where those beliefs came from, can do much to change the resultant behavior.

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