Welcome to the third installment in my Conscious Manifestation 101 series. We've so far defined manifestation, and briefly discussed how it functions, as well as clarifying the difference between conscious and unconscious manifestation. In this article we'll discuss the often misunderstood role of belief, and clarify the true role of thought in manifestation.
You can link to other articles in this series here: Part One, Part Two, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six.
Understanding the Real Role of Thought…
It is a common misconception that your thoughts determine your reality. But in actuality, they do not—this may seem shocking to some who have grown accustomed to the idea that your thoughts are responsible for everything in your experience. If you are one of those people who find this idea contrary to what you have been taught or believe, please bear with me: thoughts do play a very important role in manifestation, but just not the one that many of us believe they do. This very simple, yet fundamental, misunderstanding is actually quite understandable as you’ll see (it also explains why manifestation often fails).
But first, consider this: if your thoughts were the sole determinant of everything that comes into your reality, then every single thing you’ve ever thought would have come to pass. Including everything you’ve idly, or actively, wished for—the reciprocated interest of that guy or girl you liked, that promotion you chased that went to someone else, the acceptance letter from your “reach” college, the relationship you wanted to hang on to that ended, and so on. But each and every one of us has thought about and wished for many things that have failed to manifest. Why is that? Because there must be more than thought involved in manifestation.
And yet, thoughts do play a very important part in manifestation. Here’s how it works: thoughts are like magnets, very powerful magnets, and they work to attract absolutely everything you think about to you—however, they don’t actually determine your reality, as we can see in the paragraph above. This may sound contradictory, but it’s not, because even though you may have attracted something to you via your thought, you still have to let whatever it is in to your experience. And if you don’t let it in, it will not become part of your experience.
The thing that allows you to experience whatever it is your thoughts have drawn to you is your belief; meaning that the state of your belief on any particular subject will determine what you experience in regards to that subject.
What I mean by the “state of your beliefs” is how much you believe something is possible/ok to want/desirable. When you believe something is any of these things it manifests easily. When you believe that something is not possible/not ok/not desirable, you will be blocked from manifesting it to the exact extent that you believe in the impossibility, not ok-ness, or undesirableness of whatever it is you are thinking about. I call this an opposing belief.
Here is why it is so easy to misunderstand the real role of thought in manifestation: sometimes your thoughts and your beliefs do line up, and you experience the manifestation of something that you have thought about, or even actively wished for. But because we often are much less aware of our beliefs than we are of our thoughts, it is easy to attribute the manifestation only to the thought without understanding the role played by belief.
This is the reason that people fail to make manifestation work for them—not being conscious of either their beliefs (most of us are very unaware of our beliefs), or the role that those beliefs play, they notice a connection between thoughts and their reality, but they fail to grasp the bigger picture. Because of this they are unable to successfully and consistently manifest consciously. Don't beat yourself up if you've made this mistake—it's an easy one to make.
How Thoughts and Beliefs Work Together: The Party Analogy…
First of all, it is helpful to understand that you have both conscious and unconscious thoughts—thoughts that you are aware of, and thoughts that you aren’t. And all thoughts, even the unconscious ones that never bubble up to your conscious mind, all emit powerful vibrations.
For our purposes we can define conscious and unconscious thought in the following way: conscious thoughts are those that you remember thinking, and unconscious thoughts are those that you don’t.
The next thing to understand is that the universe responds to every thought you have, conscious or unconscious, and that it actually delivers, as it were, every single thing you think about. However, as we have been discussing, it is your belief that serves to let whatever the universe has delivered into your life.
A helpful way to think of the relationship between beliefs and thoughts is this: imagine that you are throwing a party at your home. You invite various people to your party, and when they arrive, you let them in. Your thoughts are like the invitations you send out for your party. But in this scenario, without exception, every single “person” you invite to your party will show up. But just because they show up, doesn’t mean you’ve let them in—it is your beliefs that open the door and usher in your invited guests.
So, your thoughts are invitations that the universe, and everything in it, can’t help but respond to, but you must open the door, via your beliefs, in order to allow your guests into your party.
Consequently, each and every one of your thoughts issue “invitations”, whether they be something you’d like to manifest or not. Your unconscious thoughts work exactly the same way, you just don’t realize that you are sending out the invitations. To get a feel for the kind of unconscious invitees you are allowing into your “party”, look around at your experience: your relationships, your home, your financial affairs, your job—every single thing you see is a result of a thought (the invitation) and a belief (the opening of the door).
As you look around at your life, your world, your home, how much do you observe that has resulted from conscious thought and belief? How much of it do you really want to be there? What would you like to see manifested in your life that is not currently?
Now you see why it is so easy to misunderstand the role of thought in manifestation. When someone says that your thoughts powerfully attract anything into your life—they are actually correct! However, there is one crucial element that is often overlooked—the allowing of all of the things you have attracted into your reality via your beliefs.
Deactivating an Opposing Belief…
We'll talk about how you can start identifying and changing your beliefs to be more in line with what you'd like to manifest in Part Four and Part Five. But before we do that, I'm going to discuss a phenomena, "deactivating an opposing belief", whereby you can manifest something by releasing an oppositional belief. In this case to is not necessary to have an actively positive belief; that is, a belief that the thing you’d like to manifest is possible/ok/wanted—it's only necessary to get rid of any beliefs that whatever it is you want is not possible/ok/wanted.
Anyone who has decided to “give up” or “let it go” after wishing fervently for something for a long time, only to find that the desired thing then seemingly magically appears, has experienced this. If this has happened to you, it was the letting go that served to deactivate the opposing belief that was preventing the manifestation of whatever it was you were wishing for.
Ironically, wanting something really badly can occasionally generate lots of fear and worry, which are always indicative of an opposing belief, usually a belief that something is not possible. And so, if you've experienced this, through your wishing for it, you've called whatever it was you wanted to you, you've “invited” it. But through your opposing belief, you've kept the door shut. Only when you release (intentionally or unintentionally) the opposing belief do you allow what you desire into your experience.
Signs that you have deactivated an opposing belief include a sense of relief, peace, and or calm—how many times have you decided to let go of something long wished for, felt a sense of genuine peace over your decision, as you unconsciously (or consciously for that matter) deactivated your opposing belief, only to have the long wished for thing suddenly appear?
As nice as it is to finally experience the full manifestation of whatever it is you have been longing for, this kind of manifestation is a form of unconscious manifestation, and therefore not nearly as powerful as conscious manifestation, in terms of what you can accomplish with it. Now, I’m a fan of anything that brings you whatever you desire, and deactivating an opposing belief can certainly help with that, but I think you’ll find that conscious manifestation is ultimately a much more dynamic, and decidedly less frustrating way to go about creating the life you want—it’s generally faster for one thing, and usually allows you to avoid the strain of wrestling with an opposing belief
An Aside about Desire and Suffering…
As a side note, in light of how frustrating it can be to intensely desire something, yet at the same time hold an opposing belief, I think there’s no mystery to the fact that desire has gotten a bad wrap down through the ages—if you are wishing fervently for something but opposing the manifestation of it with your particular beliefs, you are all but certainly setting yourself up for a most painful experience. And you can certainly see how easy it would be to equate desire with suffering given this. Understandably, many people have decided that the best way to eliminate suffering is to attempt to stop wanting things, rather than feel the pain of unrequited desire.
But unfortunately, in my opinion, this way of going about things causes far more trouble. The idea that one should not want things naturally leads one to the opposing belief that wanting things is not good, which in turn leads to less of an ability to manifest anything since this belief is in opposition to desire, which in turn leads to more pain resulting from desire, which leads to an even stronger belief that wanting things is bad, and so on…
Desire is not what makes us miserable (nor is desire bad or evil)—what makes us miserable is lack of understanding of the mechanics of desire. And feeling guilty about having desires in the first place doesn’t help either.
Wrapping It all Up…
So, in essence, you may want something, visualize it in detail, even “set your intention” for it. But until you believe that it is possible/ok/wanted, or at the very least you deactivate any belief you hold that the item in question is not possible/not ok/not wanted, you’ll be at the mercy of your particular belief regarding that subject. As I stated above, it is this misunderstanding of the power that your beliefs hold that seems to hold people back from truly utilizing conscious manifestation.
It’s kind of like the universe is always waiting to prove to you that whatever you believe is correct—and it is! One hundred percent of the time, everything you believe is completely true. Just look around you, the universe is constantly supplying ample evidence to back up your particular beliefs. The same goes for everyone else, too. Consequently, nobody's truth applies to anyone else. This makes a great case for tolerance of opposing view points, doesn’t it?
So why not start believing in the possibility of everything you desire? Why not give the universe something good to prove to you?
Next up: Part Four, where I'll show you how to identify your beliefs. Then, in Part Five, we'll discuss how to change your beliefs.