Updated: Jan 7, 2022
or how I came across the 3 Principles and why suddenly everything makes so much sense.
I've always been avid of knowledge, but not the grounded type, nor the logical one. My quest for uncovering my role in this life, understanding the purpose of my hurt and pain, making sense of past events, has led me to dig into realms that would make my own father shudder!
Those who have a 'why' to live, can bear with almost any 'how'.
In this pursuit of answers, I first came across Sydney Banks and shortly after, Michael Neill. Sydney Banks, a Scottish-born philosopher, articulated the three "formless" principles of Mind, Consciousness and Thought, explaining the entire range of human behaviour and feeling states. According to Banks, these principles are responsible for the creation of all human experiences. Umm, could you repeat that for me? How could I possibly apply a concept that confused me instead of answered all my questions? And as with everything else in my life, genius catalyst cafe, and Michael Neill explaining the 3 Principles in a more graspable way, came directly in my mail inbox. That's when my son joined in the conversation.
How could I make sense of something so abstract but seemingly amazing that my son would appreciate it?
Alex is an awesome kid, a music passionate and a tremendously talented drummer. We often discuss various topics such as why being vegan, rock'n roll, purpose and life, so I believed my new found concept had its place in the conversation. I love coffee, real intense and creamy, freshly ground from the beans, with its full empowering aroma. And here it was, my perfect found analogy: the human experience is a cup of coffee...
By the look on Alex's face, I needed to expand.
Using the principles of Mind, Consciousness and Thought, Consciousness becomes a coffee machine with grinder and can only provide the coffee experience once coffee beans have been added. The coffee beans are Thought: bitter beans, bitter thought, sweet beans, sweet thought, sour beans, sour thought, and so on. The coffee experience, for me a ristretto, with its nutty, chocolaty flavours and some notes of dried fruits, always rich and complex, with the very distinguishable caramel coloured froth, is the perfect invitation to a moment with myself.
Our human experience depends on the type of thought we put in the consciousness, just as the coffee depends on the type of beans we add to the grinder. The more bitter the thought, the more bitter the experience, the sweeter the thought...you know what I mean. And Mind in all that? Mind is simply the power, the electricity into the coffee machine. And Alex understood exactly what I was talking about!
Our conversation deviated a bit and Alex questioned what made people happy. Indeed, isn't the sole purpose of our human experience to find happiness? We often believe that owning the latest phone model, buying a desired object, or starting the perfect job will bring us happiness. I used to believe that. I know better today. Combining the 3 Principles discussion and the coffee machine, I asked Alex if the price tag on my mug or espresso cup made a difference to the coffee experience? Not really! A chipped mug might actually bring sweeter memories than a brand new, top of the range cup. And this alone, the memories carrying us away, wandering in the past, will make the coffee experience more enjoyable. Our possessions don't make much of a difference - isn't the secret fear of the very wealthy to lose their wealth?
Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own experiences.
The coffee experience will depend on the quality and type of beans we put into the machine. This experience will be enhanced by the company we keep, the people around us who make life's experiences so much more memorable. And I am convinced that our human experience is just like the coffee experience. Our thoughts impact our emotions, our thoughts are our emotions. Controlling my thoughts, acknowledging my thoughts, recognising that I can change my thought at will gives me so much faith in my own abilities to impact my happiness, my moods, my life. And the people around me just add to this experience.
Our thoughts are our reality indeed!
This wonderful conversation with my son, over a cup of coffee of course, was a perfect illustration of the simplicity and wonder of life. No one but I am in control of my thoughts. And I am always one thought away to feeling better, one thought away to changing my life.