Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Power of Visualization

I love bumper stickers!
Yet one more reason to hate Communism.
We did not have any bumper stickers. Hell; we did not have any cars!
Well, the party elite did but they hated bumper stickers. – I guess they were a threat to the purity of Marxist doctrine – But I digress.

I remember the day I saw this bumper sticker – You all know it – it said:
“Visualize Word Peace”
An electric tingle went down my spine.
It was so beautiful, so profound, so perfect and clear.
I went home and that evening before I went to sleep, I visualized “World Peace”

I always do my meditation in the evening before I go to bed.
It helps me relax and helps me fall asleep. It also keeps me from procrastinating myself out of my meditation practice.

That night, I had dreams of children playing in green fields full of flowers.
People smiling on the streets and a good vibration permeating the air…
I kept visualizing world peace for a long, long time.

One day, it just occurred to me that world peace has never been actualized.
Of course there were moments when peace seemed to reign over humanity, like at the end of the second WW, or in the seventies when people went out on the streets and ended the Vietnam War, but I could never recall when actually world peace visualization really worked.

Maybe I wasn’t up to par with my visualization techniques or there was something with my meditation, but then again; what about the Dalai Lama?
He must have a chakra higher than the empire state building. Why couldn’t he visualize a free Tibet?
Why couldn’t he and his people produce that kind a shift in the universal consciousness as to free Tibet?
Maybe because four billion Chinese are visualizing ruling Tibet?

In any case it seems to me that the only time the people can actualize peace or any positive social, or political change, is when we get out of our meditating buts and do something about it – which is usually after the things get really, really bad.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve been guilty of the exactly same problem.
It seems to me that the only time in my life I have been able to affect major shifts and changes in my destiny were the times when the shit hit the fan, when I reached the bottom and there was no other way to go but up.

So for the people who still believe in the power of visualization I have a special request:
Please join me in my meditation.
Visualize yourself acting!


Psiplex said...

When the attention is focused singly on a purpose, there are going to be results. Remembering when at crucial crossroads in life, the visualization (often occurring in seconds) combined with using all of the body's strength and willpower did indeed affect change. Perhaps some call it survival instinct or another term, all II know is that when 100% of available energy and passion were focused, things changed.

Of all the things men desire and long for, I find it amazing that you wish for World Peace. Big respect my brother as the majority of folks do not just put any attention in that direction. Most of the time, attention is focused on building a better 'me', a more comfortable 'me', an infinitely more likable 'me', a younger, wealthier, more sexy 'me'. Most of us can't get past 'me' since we got here, nor plan on doing so. Wishing, meditating and working toward World Peace is an example we can all use, right now.

One Love

LLnL said...

I believe in visualization but I don't practice it that often. Even if I did not believe that it had any effect, because I have been tempted with that, it feels so much better than worry and dread that I can only say why not.

mickael said...

no record yet found of time when humans did not wage war. always there are heroes who challenge that. 'imagine' they say..

tens of thousands of years pass. not one yet succeeded. perhaps the method is flawed?

apathy is death, indeed. yet action quite often means running in circles, which, i fear, is death in torture.

helping this world before helping oneself is treating illusion with another illusion. we all are this way it seems. :)

good luck.

Buddha said...

@ Psiplex – I like your “focus on purpose” approach. It works for me as well.
Thank you for sharing!

@ LLnL – Visualization, meditation, prayer etc are just tools.
Thy do not work by themselves. It makes a great difference on how you use them.
I am always looking for better ways to better myself.

@ Mickael – Communism did not fail because it was a bad concept, it failed because people are not perfect (not ready yet) to live in a perfect world.
We don’t need a better method we need better people!

Flight said...

Imagine there's no Heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say that I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world

You may say that I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will live as one

Talon said...

So true, Buddha...

Flight - what a great reminder!

This is a great quote and apt,

Mohandas K. Gandhi:

"The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems."

Flight said...,art,information,graphics,type:photography,type:words,beings,black,and,white-51df0e1bdf8a52d6c8e12f3c2b6b744c_h.jpg

Anonymous said...

If we each were given one task to do that worked for the betterment of all ... solving the world's problems would be easy and simple. One task is all it would take. Who is gonna dish them out and decide who gets what ... now theres the rub!

Brigit said...

In the film Ambition to Meaning Wayne Dyer says "you attract what you are." Maybe that's the beginning, being at peace with oneself. How do people that have been raised in war torn countries recognise peace? What is peace to a child of these parents? As for our peace loving countries helping others fight wars, well that requires action.

Ted Bagley said...

Children playing in green fields of flowers, people smiling on the streets and a good vibration permeating the air...
What makes that world peace?

Anonymous said...

I first have to say that I agree with Ted Begley above me. Secondly, according to the definitions of seemingly world peace you gave above, it seems as if world peace only comes after thousands and thousands of bodies have been sprayed with bullets and towns have been firebombed.

You're right about getting off our meditating butts and doing something about it, but you must be one with yourself before attempting to instill that oneness on the world. The meditation helps you to focus and be more direct when getting off your butt to do something about it.

mickael said...

recall number of attempts to breed or rise better people. i guess you know what happened to them. :)

yet again, there was sakyamuni. do you think he was any better than any other human?

will to 'improve' things come from attachment to self. i did not get it when first saw. so, take time, don't rush to judge that statement.

good luck.

Mark said...

You make a great point. Visualize ourselves "acting" is brilliant!

Liara Covert said...

Meditation is a very powerful tool. You can use it torediscover parts of your hidden self and to shift your perception to what matters.

Buddha said...

@ Flight – I think we should make that song the UN anthem!

@ Talon – I too believe the power of action is the only thing that can solve our problems.

@ Aggie – It seems that we need a catalyst to start acting. Unfortunately it seems we only react after something bad happens.

@ Brigit – My father was an alcoholic. I am not. It was my decision, not his.

@ Ted – Well, some how children playing in the mine fields and people shutting in the streets, air filled with stench of death did not seem a good way to visualize peace.

@ Samurai – War some time ends in peace but that doesn’t mean it is a prerequisite of peace. I never advocate such belief.

@ Mickael – Better people are not “breed”, better people are enlightened, lifted up from their ignorance.
And , yes, I believe Buddha was more enlightened than most human beings.

@ Mark – Thank you! And I mean it :)

@ Liara – Totally agree! I practice it every day.

mickael said...

vajra prajnaparamita. please read it.

and kill a buddha already ;)

good luck.

Ted Bagley said...

Saying I can't is also an option. Or asking yourself, "What do you mean by peace?"

facedestiny said...

I too was remembering John Lennon while reading this. If someone is visualising death and someone else peace the outcome is uncertain.

Visualising without action is dreaming. But you need the visualisation to help form the action, so they go hand in hand.

I love Aggie's suggestion of giving out tasks to work towards world peace. I can't see this working in an organised way though - someone wouldn't like their task or would think someone else's had more prestige (the 'me' culture prevailing over the 'we' culture).

But there's nothing stopping us choosing our own task - visualising what we individually can do to contribute to a peaceful world, then taking action to make it happen.