Do you have an open mind?

Imagine never having an argument. Imagine never having to defend yourself. Imagine never hearing gossip about another person. Imagine a world where everyone speaks the truth. Imagine everyone did the best they could. Do we live in that kind of world? Have you ever wondered why? So let’s play a game to find out where you come in on all this.

Answer the following questions quickly and honestly and write down your answers – no-one else is looking at you now so be completely honest with yourself:

  1. Do you frequently think that you are right?
  2. Do you get defensive during a conversation or debate?
  3. Do you ALWAYS try to win?
  4. Do you often take the higher moral ground?
  5. Do you feel that your beliefs are truly yours?
  6. When you get emotional, do you find it hard to see reason?
  7. Do you often quote others as if they are your own?
  8. Do you automatically either agree or disagree?
  9. Do you often speak before you think about what you want to say?
  10. Do you quickly judge people?
  11. Do you feel these questions are unfair and irrelevant? (If you answer Yes here, I am wasting your time, but thanks for reading this far)

We can truly live in reality

Well, if you have answered YES to any of the above questions; first of all know that you are in the majority, however, it could also mean that your mind is not completely open. According to an article written by Deepak Chopra in the San Francisco Chronicle, we can catch ourselves and open our minds more so we can truly live in reality.

Everything we hear and see fixes a notion in our minds. Once we have decided it is right, it is difficult for us to see another view or possibility. I can help in this area. Chopra refers to his personal experience of “accepting the fixed notion that the [American] credit system was frozen. You hear this every day, and nobody seems to contradict it. Yet I subsequently read an analysis that concluded that American banks loaned more in the last quarter of 2008 than the year before”. So which notion is correct?

Chopra recommends the following anecdotes to the 10 points I made above. No 11 is my own notion!

  1. Stop believing that you’re right. Examine the compulsion that forces you to be right all the time.
  2. Don’t make every argument us versus them.
  3. Be less attached to winning and more attached to the truth.
  4. Don’t colour every issue with morality. Right and wrong are generally useless when it comes to finding creative solutions.
  5. Write down the five fundamental beliefs that guide your life. Now write down the best arguments against those beliefs.
  6. When you are the most emotional about any issue, assume that you are blinding yourself. An open mind is calm, centred, flexible, and tolerant of opposing views.
  7. When you are thinking of saying an idea that you know came from someone else, let go of it.
  8. Most people either automatically agree or automatically disagree. Examine this trait in yourself and give it up.
  9. Be aware of how you feel before you speak. Feelings are closer to the truth than words.
  10. Walk in someone else’s shoes before you judge them.
  11. And my personal favourite – just know that your thoughts are your OWN thoughts, you can NEVER speak for another because you NEVER truly know what they are thinking.

See how you get on with those and then endeavour to incorporate them into your every day living. A highly recommended read is “The Seven Spiritual Laws of  Success” by Deepak Chopra. I have personally read this book twice – once quickly and a second time to really question myself about each of the 7 main points. Any questions? Give me a shout 🙂

Enjoy,

Elaine

References: http://deepakchopra.com/ http://deepakchopra.com/?p=2017

4 thoughts on “Do you have an open mind?

  • July 18, 2009 at 2:28 pm
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    Well done Elaine. I also am a Chopra fan ! Keep on scribbling !

  • June 16, 2009 at 12:44 pm
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    Paul
    Thanks for the kind words. The problem sometimes is that we think the beliefs are our own and we just accept them. Often they come from conditioning rather than experience. So I agree that we need to always be open to new information, so we can broaden our perspective and add value to our world 🙂

    Elaine

  • June 16, 2009 at 11:41 am
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    Nice post! I like all things Chopra. Sometimes we are so attached to our own beliefs that we are not open to new information.

  • June 15, 2009 at 10:55 pm
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    i happen to step into this blog, i just had to say i really like it !
    u got yourself a reader !
    thank you:)

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