Saturday, September 12, 2009

Manifestos



People like slogans, mantras. People like affirmations, statements of purpose, core values, principles of unity. They like to set goals. Ever since I found out that the prime directive of consciousness is to sort through all incoming sensory information in order to decide what will become conscious - usually choosing what is expected - I understand why manifestos work. If you set a goal and create a sentence to describe that, and especially if you repeat that sentence every day, then your mind will automatically begin to scan for anything that might support the idea. That's why, when you buy a car for instance, you suddenly notice how many other people drive the same model, or when you get a dog, a whole new society of dog people becomes visible.

Prayer is a wonderful form of manifesto because prayers almost always include gratitude, thereby generating the ability of human consciousness to perceive blessings and gifts. Donald Engstrom-Reese, a friend and ex-cohort, has been creating strings of "prayer beads" for decades now, assigning one sentence prayers to each bead, kind of like a Pagan version of the rosary, which is itself a very powerful manifesto.

Another friend likes to say "Believe me." I think this is her form of manifesto - short and to the point. I believe she is speaking to herself as much as to anyone else. I like it. And I tend to believe her, too!

Recently a friend who is also a life coach guided me through a session to determine my life's path, and though the exercise itself didn't really work, it did get me thinking. Eventually I came up with the following sentence: I remember and embrace my legacy as healer. After saying it a few times, I realized that this is not only my life's purpose, but an affirmation. Very cool.

Affirmations are a manifesto form that has never worked well for me, because if it's something that isn't already manifested, I feel like a liar saying it out loud. At least that's the story I'm accustomed to telling myself.

But I might be wrong about affirmations. This week a friend shared his daily affirmation with me - wow! It's so powerful, it would get anyone's butt up and out the door in the morning. When he says it, he speaks quickly - sincerely, yes, but not with any particular emotion. He is so convincing. Wow.

Below is a bit of my friend's manifesto, not too much since it's very personal, but enough to give you the idea of its potency.

I am light, light, full of light. I am radiant and energized, kind, gentle, and sweet, and only sweetness comes from my mouth.

Today I remember my kind word, my smile, my uplifting gesture, all through the day. When negativity arises, I remember the voice of God calling me to count my blessings and shine a light in the world.

I am strong and fearless, patient and calm, unhurried and unworried, poised and confident. I walk in glory with my head held high and fear no evil.

Today I make my space my own and I take my time.

I am wealthy now. I have everything I need. Everything I want is attracted to me.

I am healthy now. My colon is clear, my heart is strong, my chi is flowing freely in all my parts. I am whole and complete and happy now. I am a joyful light in this world.


Amen, brother!

21 comments:

ellen abbott said...

Yes, very powerful. I admire people who do things like that. I should try it again. Only I always feel a little silly when I do stuff like that., especially out loud. Does he say it out loud?

Reya Mellicker said...

He does, very matter of factly, without emotion or even emphasis. He knows he's not going to get it all done every day, but he likes reminding himself. It's like a pep talk. Very cool!

Elizabeth said...

I hate mantras and slogans and bumper stickers and love them at the same time.
Weird.
"Every day in every way I get better and better" Hm..

I like the Nunc Dimmittis:
Lord now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace according to they word.....
This is said by an old man who had achieved peace....

Looking forward to Thursday.

Elizabeth said...

....thy word
my editing skills are limited.....

glnroz said...

healer?,,I feel better already..

Reya Mellicker said...

People like manifestos so much that many have become totally cliche, like "Every day ..." I don't know that I could ever say that without a shred of irony in my voice, even though I believe at least some parts of me are getting better and better.

Some parts? Worse and worse. But I don't need to say that part out loud, do I? Well?

steven said...

hi reya - i very like this affirmation. but i whisper my words for myself. sometimes i speak them inside my head. because i am asking for myself to live by them and for guidance from forces that have no ears - well not like some might think of ears. in my bloggy "about me" bit i say part of my affirmation - "to bring what goodness i can to the time i am given" i love that reyachum's words include gratitude. i don't forget to be grateful but i don't say it when asking for guidance. that's a good piece for me to work on 'cause there's a sort of balance there. have a peaceful evening. steven

Bee said...

This is the bit that I will take away: "generating the ability of human consciousness to perceive blessings and gifts."

I totally believe this.

Thanks, Reya, for another fantastic post that feeds the mind and heart. You ARE a healer, you know . . . just with your thoughts alone.

Sandra Leigh said...

Reya, thank you for reminding me of the importance of affirmations. I do talk to myself, but too much of the talk is negative. Today, I will give myself the encouragement I need. Thanks again.

Dan Gurney said...

I LOVE your friend's manifesto! These affirmations/prayers/mantras work as you describe. Plus in other ways, too, no doubt.

I've used a similar, but much shorter manifesto—-pithy, for instant use--that I learned at a Buddhist Metta meditation retreat. Pithy is great when you're a short-attention span guy.

After years of use, I KNOW it works and have benefited from it greatly.

May I be safe. May I be happy. May I be healthy, May I be at ease. May I be grateful for all life's blessings.

Delwyn said...

Hi Reya

I have to agree with Dan

The mind needs something short and sweet to latch onto and to revert to when necessary as an automatic default....

If you find the right simple phrase it will be laden with layers of meaning that the unconscious mind can register...and the soul resonate with...

go for pithy...

Oh Happy days

Reya Mellicker said...

Oh Dan! It's the metta prayer!

My friend's affirmation is twice as long as the portion I included here. He tells me it grew over time to include more and more of his daily intention. He doesn't need a cheat sheet to say it, he knows it all by heart. He said it to me over dinner, sitting in a restaurant, far away from any meditative environment.

I like my other friends pithy "Believe me," and I like John's big ole affirmation. I'm going to start thinking about this. Very cool!

lettuce said...

thats a great manifesto, thank you and your friend

i might borrow bits of it

Pauline said...

The thing about affirmations is that they put you in a certain frame of mind. One of the most powerful affirmations I've heard is: "I am willing to let go."

Reya Mellicker said...

I am willing to let go.

Wow!! Packs a wallop!

tam said...

one that works for me is "I am in the right place at the right time"

Nancy said...

Wow, that is a very powerful affirmation. Mine is very small only 21 words. His takes in everything!

Barbara Martin said...

Words of wisdom, Reya.

The Bug said...

I'm going to borrow some of his affirmation myself - love it! I need to remind myself to be a positive force in the world - it's so easy to be down on myself & anyone else who enters my path going the wrong way.

Barbara Martin said...

I do regular affirmations to keep positive about my writing and finding a job.

poietes said...

Reya,
I've been meaning to tell you that this particular post prompted me to rewrite my own mantra.

Thanks for the creative push.