Christian D. (Christian Daa) Larson.

How the mind works online

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the senses nor does it produce mere phenomena. On
the contrary, metaphysics appeals directly to the su-
perior understanding, and its purpose is to develop
worth, greatness and superiority in man.

Those persons who live habitually in the meta-
physical attitude have a wholesome, healthful ap-
pearance. They are bright, happy, contented, and
they look clean. They are thoroughly alive, but in
their expression of life there is a deep calmness that
indicates extraordinary power and the high attain-
ment of real harmony. We realize, therefore, why
it is only in the metaphysical attitude that we can
secure the best use of the mind.

The metaphysical attitude is rich in thoughts and
ideas of worth. Such ideas are always constructive,
and when applied will invariably promote practical
and tangible advancement. To entertain pure meta-
physical thought is to grow in the power to create
higher thought and also to grow in the conscious



HOW THE MIND WORKS 23

realization of the real, thereby eliminating imperfect
conditions of mind, thought or personality by re-
solving the mind in the consciousness of the uncon-
ditioned.

Metaphysics deals fundamentally with the under-
standing of the principle of absolute reality, that is,
that complete something that underlies all things,
permeates all things and surrounds all things. It-
deals with the all that there is in the world of fact
and reality, and we can readily understand that the
mind must aim to deal with the all if its use is to be
the best. In other words the best use of the mind
naturally implies that use of the mind that gives the
highest, the largest and the most comprehensive ap-
lication of everything there is in the mind. And
this the metaphysical attitude invariably tends to
do.

The understanding of the principle of absolute
reality, that is the soul, so to speak, of all that is real,
also reveals the great truth that all individual ex-
pressions of life have their source in the perfect
state of being, and that the growth of the individual
mind in the consciousness of this perfect state of be-
ing will cause that same perfection of being to be ex-
pressed more and more in the personal man. The
term "perfection," however, in this sense implies
that state of being that is all that it can be now, and
that is so much that nothing in the present state of
being can be added.



24 HOW THE MIND WORKS

We all seek perfection, that is, that state where
the mind realizes in itself those ideals that are dis-
cerned as possibilities within itself; and this form
of perfection the metaphysical attitude has the
power to produce in any mind at any time. In fact
to enter the metaphysical attitude is to give higher
and higher degrees of this perfection to every
power, every faculty, every function and every
talent in human life.

There are various methods for producing the
metaphysical attitude, but the better way is to give
the first attention to the development of a meta-
physical sense; that is, to train the mind to think
more and more of that state of consciousness
wherein the perfection of the real is the one pre-
dominating factor. When this sense is awakened
each mind will find its own best methods. The ma-
jority, however, have this sense and need only to
place it in action. To give full action to the meta-
physical sense we should aim to discern the abso-
lutely real that is within everything of which the
mind can be conscious. We should try to carry out
this aim in connection with every process of
thought, especially those processes that involve the
exercise of the imagination.



CHAPTER III.

WHAT DETERMINES MENTAL ACTION.

Every force and faculty in the mind has a ten-
dency to act in a certain way, to move in a certain
direction and to produce certain results. It is evi-
dent, therefore, that when we control the tenden-
cies of the mind we may determine the actions of
the mind and also what results those actions will
naturally produce. In addition we may determine
whether we are to go forward or backward, to-
wards inferiority or superiority. To control men-
tal tendencies we must control that from which
tendencies arise, and all tendencies are born of de-
sires. But desires can be made to order or elimi-
nated, as we may decide.

We are all familiar with the fact that it is not an
easy matter to stop "when we get a-going" in any
particular direction. For this reason we should
direct our movements in the right direction before
we begin. And to learn in what direction we are
moving we shall only have to examine the tendencies
of the mind. When any tendency is established the
mind will act unconsciously in that direction and
will carry out the desires involved.

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26 HOW THE MIND WORKS

In this connection it is highly important to un-
derstand that the creative forces in the mind invar-
iably obey and follow tendencies, and always go
with those tendencies that have the greatest inten-
sities and the most perfect concentration. When
you think that you should like to have this or that
you establish a mental tendency to create a desire
for that particular thing. And that desire may be-
come uncontrollable, so that, although the tendency
comes from a desire that you could control, it may
create a desire that you cannot control. Every ten-
dency that is formed in the mind has a tendency to
multiply and reproduce itself because an impression
is energy centralized, and creative desire always
appears with such centralizations. When the ten-
dency of an impression to produce itself is permit-
ted that tiny impression may become a powerful
mental state and may become so strong that all
other states in mind will have to obey. Under such
circumstances the man himself will become more
and more like that particular state of mind, which
fact explains a great many mysteries in human
character that have heretofore seemed beyond
comprehension.

Some people are exact externalizations of a
single predominating mental state while others
form their personalities from a group of mental
states. But since every mental state originated in
some tiny impression, we understand what may be-



HOW THE MIND WORKS 27

come of us when we permit every impression to fol-
low its natural tendency. Every large object,
physical or metaphysical, has a tendency to draw
all smaller objects into its own path, and also to
make all things in its atmosphere like unto itself.
This, however, is partly prevented by counteracting
tendencies, though the law is an important one and
should be thoroughly understood.

In the metaphysical world the understanding of
this law is especially important in the building of
character and in the development of talents. If you
have good character it means that the strongest
tendencies of mind are wholesome, elevating and
righteous in their nature, while if your character is
weak there is not one elevating tendency that
is strong enough to predominate in the world of
conduct. A perverted character is always the re-
sult of descending tendencies with the ascending
tendencies too insignificant to exercise and in-
fluence.

The fact that weak characters as well as per-
verted characters sometimes perform noble acts,
and that the finest characters sometimes degrade
themselves, is readily explained by the law of men-
tal tendencies. In the first case the better tenden-
cies are permitted occasionally to act without inter-
ference, while in the second case we find degrading
tendencies arising temporarily, possibly through
the influence of suggestion. These adverse tenden-



HOW THE MIND WORKS

cies, however, could not have exercised any power
over conduct had the strong, ascending tendencies
been active. But the strongest tendencies may at
times be inactive, and it is at these times that a good
man may fall, and the other kind show acts of
goodness.

When you think more of the external things of
life than that which is within, you create in con-
sciousness a tendency to dwell on the surface. The
result is you become superficial in proportion and
finally become much inferior to what you were. On
the other hand, when you think much of those
things that are lofty and profound you create in
consciousness a tendency to penetrate the deeper
things in life. And the result is you become con-
scious of a larger world of thought, thereby in-
creasing your mental capacity as well as placing
yourself in a position where you may make valu-
able discoveries or formulate ideas of worth.

When you place questionable pictures before
minds that are not established in purity, you create
in those minds a tendency to immoral desire, and
if those tendencies are continued such desires may
become too strong to be controlled, and the victims
will seek gratification even at the risk of life. This
illustrates how powerful a mental tendency may be-
come and how easily a wrong tendency may be pro-
duced when we do not exercise full control over
those impressions that may enter the mind.



HOW THE MIND WORKS 29

That man who thinks a great deal about spotless
virtue and keeps the idea of virtue constantly be-
fore attention will soon create such a strong ten-
dency to virtue that all desires and feelings will ac-
tually become virtuous. In consequence it will be
simplicity itself for such a person to be virtuous, for
when you are virtuous you do not have to try to be.
You do not have to resist or fight desires which you
do not want because all your desires have become
tendencies towards clean and wholesome living.
Your energies do not create grosser feelings any
more, but have been trained to create vitality, en-
ergy, force and power instead.

Here we should remember that when the pre-
dominating tendencies of mind are towards virtue
all creative energies will become constructive, and
will build up body and mind instead of being dissi-
pated through some desire that is not even normal.

Another illustration of mental tendency and how
mental tendency determines mental action is found
in the man who is ambitious. Through the efforts
of that ambition he is daily training all the tenden-
cies of the mind to act upon the faculties needed to
carry out his plans, and he is in consequence building
up those faculties with the added force and nourish-
ment thus accumulated. This proves that whenever
you resolve to accomplish certain things you will cer-
tainly succeed in proportion to your ability. But by
resolve we do not mean mere mental spurts. A re-



30 HOW THE MIND WORKS

solve to be genuine must be constant, and must
never waver in the strength of its force and deter-
mination. The reason why such a resolve must
eventually win is found in the study of mental ten-
dencies; that is, in the realization of the fact that
we go as our tendencies go, where we directed them
in their first stages.

When we think a great deal about the refined
side of life we create tendencies that will cause all
the forces within us to re-create everything in our
systems according to a more refined pattern. There-
fore, to be refined will ere long become second na-
ture, provided we keep constantly before our minds
the highest idea of refinement that we can mentally
picture. This illustrates how the control of mental
tendency may absolutely change an individual
from the most ordinary state of grossness to the
highest state of refinement.

A striking illustration of the power of mental
tendency is found in connection with the belief of
the average mind that the body decays and grows
old. For this reason we find in practically all hu-
man personalities a tendency to produce decay and
age in the body. And this tendency is actually
bringing about decay and old age where there
would be no such conditions whatever were the
tendency absent. Nature renews your body every
few months and there is no natural process of de-
cay in your system. If your system decays, you



HOW THE MIND WORKS 31

yourself have created the process of decay, either
through mental or physical violation of natural
laws, and by permitting those violations to become
permanent tendencies.

If there is a process in your system that makes
you look older every year, that process is a false
one. It is not placed there by nature. You your-
self have produced it by perpetuating the tendency
to get older, a tendency that invariably arises from
the belief that we must get older. The tendency
to become weaker in body and mind as the years go
by is also a creation of your own. It is not natural
to become weaker with the passing of years. On
the contrary, it is natural to become stronger the
longer you live, and it is just as easy for you to
create a tendency to become stronger the longer you
live as it is to create the reverse. In like manner
you can also create the tendency to become more
attractive in personality, more powerful in mind,
stronger in character and more beautiful in soul the
longer you live.

However, we must eliminate all detrimental ten-
dencies of the mind, and to do so we must find their
origin. In many instances we are born with these
adverse tendencies although many of them are ac-
quired later in life. Those tendencies with which
we are born generally become stronger and strong-
er through our own tendency to follow the groove
in which we are placed. We find, therefore, that it



32 HOW THE MIND WORKS

is always a mistake to live in a groove or to con-
tinue year after year to do a certain thing in the
same usual way. Our object should be to break
bounds constantly and to improve upon everything.
Nothing is more important than change, provided
every change is a constructive change.

Every impression that we form in the mind is a
seed which may grow a tendency. Therefore we
should not only eliminate all such impressions as
we refuse to cultivate, but we should also prevent
inferior and perverse impressions from entering the
mind in the first place. To do this, however, we
must be constantly on watch so that nothing can
enter the mind through our senses which we do not
wish to possess and perpetuate.

When we see people growing old, or rather be-
coming old through the operation of certain false
tendencies, the impression of an aging process will
stamp itself upon our minds if we permit it. Such
impressions contain the tendency to produce the
same aging process in us and it usually receives our
permission to have its way. Thus we cause the
aging process to become stronger and stronger in
us the more we see it in others until we soon discov-
er that we are actually creating for ourselves older
bodies every year. The new bodies that nature
gives us every year are thus made to look older than
the new bodies of the year before, which is a direct
violation of natural law. Then we also sing with



HOW THE MIND WORKS 33

much feeling about the death and decay that is
everywhere about us, and entertain thoughts of a
similar nature by the wholesale. But all these indica-
tions of death and decay in our environments were
not produced by nature. They were produced by
false mental tendencies which arose through false
belief about life and human nature.

The same is true regarding all other adverse ten-
dencies that may exist in us or in those with whom
we associate. When we see the action of those ten-
dencies in others we receive impressions upon our
own minds that have it in them to produce the same
tendencies in us, which will later bring about the
same adverse consequences in us. Therefore we
must not permit our minds to be impressed with
anything in our enviroment that is contrary to
what is true in the perfect nature of man. In other
words, we must never permit any mental impres-
sion that comes from the weak, the adverse or the
wrong conditions about us, but we should permit
all things that are good and constructive to impress
our minds more and more deeply every day.

We have been in the habit of thinking that va-
rious things were natural and inevitable because we
'see them everywhere about us, but when we dis-
jcover that we have made a great many of these
ithings ourselves and that they are all wrong, and
that it is just as easy to make them different, we
conclude that it is time to begin all over again. But



34 HOW THE MIND WORKS

to begin, we must transform all the tendencies of
the mind so that all of them will move in the way
we wish to go.

We may wish to enter health, but if there are ten-
dencies to disease in our systems, and especially in
the subconscious, our physical bodies will evolve
more or less disease every year. Therefore this
tendency must be changed to one of health before we
can have what we desire in this respect. In other
words, every action in the human system must be
a health producing action and such will be the case
when all the tendencies of the system have perfect
health as their goal. The same is true regarding all
other desires, tendencies or objects we may have in
view.

The first question, therefore, to ask is this:
Where am I going? or rather, Where are the ten-
dencies of my mind going? Are those tendencies
moving towards sin, sickness, decay, weakness and
failure, or are they moving towards the reverse?
We must look at ourselves closely and learn wheth-
er those tendencies are moving where we wish to
go, or moving towards conditions that we know to
be wrong or detrimental. And when we find where
these tendencies are moving we must proceed to
change them if they are wrong, and this we can do
by producing right mental tendencies in their
stead.



HOW THE MIND WORKS 35

When we look at the tendencies of our mind we
can largely determine what our own future is to be,
provided we do not change those tendencies later
on. Then when we know that our present physical
conditions, our present strength, our present abil-
ity, our present character, our present attainments
and our present achievements are all the conse-
quences of the way our mental tendencies have been
moving, and also that we have lived, thought and
acted according to those tendencies when we
know these things, we shall have found knowledge
of priceless value, and by applying that knowledge
we can make our own future as we wish it to be.

The question is, whither are we drifting, not
physically but mentally, because it is the way we
drift mentally that determines both the actions of
the mind and the actions of the body. And our
mental tendencies answer this question. As they go
so do we go. What we are creating, what we are
building, what we are developing these things de-
pend upon how the tendencies of the mind are di-
rected. Therefore the proper course to pursue is to
determine where we wish to go, in what direction
and when. Then establish in mind what we wish to
accomplish and how soon.

Know what you want and what you want to be.
Then examine all the tendencies of your mind. All
those which are not going the way you want to go
must be changed, while all those that are already go-



36 HOW THE MIND WORKS

ing your way should be given more and more power.
Then do not waver in your purpose. Never look
back, let nothing disturb your plans, and keep your
highest aspirations too sacred to be mentioned.
You will find that if you will pursue this course you
will go where you wish to go, you will achieve what
you have planned, and your destiny will be as you
desire.



CHAPTER IV.

THE LEADING METAPHYSICAL LAW.

Whatever enters the consciousness of man will
express itself in the personality of man. This is
one of the most important of all the laws of life,
and when its immense scope is fully comprehended
thousands of perplexing questions will be answered.
We shall then know why we are as we are and why
all things about us are as they are ; and we shall also
know how all this can be changed. When we ex-
amine the principle upon which this law is based
we find that our environments are the results of our
actions and our actions are the results of our
thoughts. Our physical and mental conditions are
the results of our states of mind and our states of
mind are the results of our ideas. Our thoughts are
mental creations patterned after the impressions
that exist in consciousness and our ideas are the
mental conceptions that come from our conscious
understanding of life. Thus we realize that every-
thing existing both in the mental field and in the
personality, as well as in surrounding conditions,
have their origin in that which becomes active in
human consciousness.

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38 HOW THE MIND WORKS

We may define consciousness by stating that it is
an attribute of the Ego through which the individ-
ual knows what is and what is taking place. Con-
sciousness may usually be divided into three phases,
the objective, the subjective and the absolute.
Through absolute consciousness the Ego discerns
its relationship with the universal that phase of
consciousness that is beyond the average mind and
need not necessarily be considered in connection
with this law. Through subjective consciousness
the Ego knows what is taking place within itself,
that is, within the vast field of individuality. And
through objective consciousness the Ego knows
what is taking place in its immediate external
world. Objective consciousness employs the five
external senses, while subjective consciousness em-
ploys all those finer perceptions which, when
grouped together are sometimes spoken of as the
sixth sense.

In our study of this law we shall deal principally
with subjective consciousness because it is this con-
sciousness that rules over real interior action. The
subjective plane is the plane of change and growth
so that there can be no change in any part of life
until the cause of the desired change has been found
or produced in the subjective. What enters objec-
tive consciousness will not produce any effect upon
the personality unless it also enters subjective con-



HOW THE MIND WORKS 39

sciousness, because it is only what becomes subjec-
tive that reproduces itself in the human entity.

In our present state of existence the center of
conscious action is largely in the subconscious mind,
that is, the interior or finer mental field, and in con-
sequence all the actions of consciousness are di-
rectly connected with the subjective. In this con-
nection it is well to state that the terms subjective
and subconscious mean practically the same. What-
ever enters consciousness and is deeply felt will im-
press itself upon the subjective so therefore in order
to control the results of this law we must avoid giv-
ing deep feelings to such impressions, thoughts,
ideas or desires as we do not wish to have repro-
duced in ourselves. There are many impressions
and experiences that enter objective consciousness
to a degree, but never become subjective since they
are not accompanied with depth of feeling. We
may be conscious of such experiences or impres-
sions, but we are not affected by them. For this
reason we need not give them our attention, which
is well because the majority of the impressions that
enter the conscious mind pass off, so to speak, with-
out affecting life in any way.

Whatever actually enters consciousness is always
felt by the finer sensibilities of mind, and whatever
enters into the finer state of mind is taken up by the
creative energies; and impressions are accordingly
produced. From these impressions will come sim-



40 HOW THE MIND WORKS

ilar expressions, and it is such expressions that de-
termine thought, character, conduct and life. To
state this law in a slightly different manner we may
state that whatever enters subjective consciousness
will produce an impression just like itself, and every
subjective impression becomes a pattern for
thought creation while it lasts. Therefore when-
ever an impression is formed in the mind, thoughts
will be created just like that impression. And so
long as that impression remains in subjective con-
sciousness thought will continue to be formed after
its likeness. Then we must remember that every
thought created in the mind goes out into the per-
sonality, producing vital and chemical effects ac-
cording to its nature.

Thus we understand the process of the law.
First, the impression is formed upon subjective con-
sciousness. Second, the creative energies of tiie
mind will produce thoughts and mental states just
like those impressions, and all such thoughts and
mental states will express themselves in the person-
ality, producing conditions in the personality simi-
lar to their own nature. To illustrate this process
from everyday life we may mention several exper-


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Online LibraryChristian D. (Christian Daa) LarsonHow the mind works → online text (page 2 of 11)