If you don’t read newspapers or choose not to watch the news, people’s usual response, parrot-fashion, is something along the lines of ‘you need to know what’s going on’ or ‘you need to be informed’. People used to get quite irate with me when I told them I preferred not to read newspapers regularly. But, as I explained to them, the newspapers inform you of a microcosm; a miniscule fragment of ‘reality’ and it’s always filtered through someone’s often fearful (and therefore inaccurate) opinion. For every single newspaper reported incident, there are hundreds of thousands if not millions of life-affirming stories which go unreported. I should know, as I used to work in the news media for several years - in both print journalism and on TV. I saw first-hand how the news is sourced and put together and so I have an accurately ‘behind the scenes’ viewpoint.
I’m not suggesting we nervously try to ‘ignore negativity’, (which can be a fearful denial rather than empowered choice, and doesn’t bring peace) but we want to get balanced. Although there is truth that hearing about what we don’t want evolves us - it is not necessary to overdo it. If you find that reading or watching the news obsessively is ‘dimming your light’ and making you feel afraid, you may want to reconsider your choices.
Ask yourself how is your choice of media making you feel? Would you keep eating food that made you feel bad? No? So I suggest you choose the information that enters your mind in a similar, guided way. ‘Stand porter at the door of thought’ as the mystic Mary Baker Eddy suggested. Why not invite more healthful words and images within?
Beyond the storm of thoughts
When something comes to your attention and it makes you afraid; or angry; or somehow pessimistic- you are never upset for the reason you think.
Although ‘the incident’, whatever it may be, an unpleasant news story or an unpleasant relationship in your life or some other insecurity, seems to be the reason you feel this way - it is something else.
Your observation of the situation has caused you to step out of your connection and step into a ’storm’ of negative thoughts; a false perception. And this is where the pain comes in; the pain of being on an ‘off’ perception; of being disconnected from your who you are. From this painful perception, the knee jerk response is to push on. The problem with this approach is that you then attract more negative information, solutions are nowhere to be found and, like going full-on at a knot you’re trying to untie, before long you’re in an even greater mess.
Stepping back is your way through
‘Hold onto the centre’ Tao te Ching
When you are ‘off centre’, the mind kicks into overdrive, chattering away relentless justifications of why you ’should’ feel bad. It seemingly goes on and on, in a loop, repeating itself. Even your physical senses seem to reflect back its warped worldview. It can all seem very real.
A solution is to quieten the senses - and step back from the mind - and access the wisdom within. Within every storm there is a calm centre, and at the centre of a ’stormy’ mind, there is also calm. One of the ways to access this calm is through meditation.
Meditation gets you in touch with the ‘real world’, which always exists, at your centre; as if on another frequency playing in-parallel with all the dramas of the world.
By closing your eyes, turning your attention within, taking a few slow deep breaths, you withdraw from the physical senses and the outer world. It is from this space of calm and connection which we can then stand in our own empowerment - and positively affect the world.
By listening within you will access the ‘real news’.
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