By Deceiving Others, We Deceive Ourselves

We mislead ourselves all day long. Such self-serving biases we undertake to cheat ourselves in order to mislead others and construct social advantage. Psychologists have identified several ways of fooling ourselves like biased information-gathering, biased reasoning and biased recollections. We seek information only that supports what we want to believe and avoid that which we do not.

One of the most common types of self-deception is self-enhancement. We overestimate our good qualities because it makes us feel good. Self-enhancement boosts motivation, leading to greater accomplishment. If getting motivated is our goal, then we could do that without reality distortion. Self-deception has evolved for the purpose of other deception.

Overconfidence about one’s self intelligence neither leads to better mental health or academic performance, but self-deception begets social advantage. Most of us see good self-esteem and enhanced motivation is a reason enough for self-enhancement to evolve. In the long run overconfidence may backfire.

It is not that there is one part of us deliberately fooling another part of us that is the “self.” If you need to convince somebody of something, if your career or social success depends on persuasion, then the first person who needs to be convinced is yourself. On the defensive side, whenever anyone tries to convince you of something, think about what might be motivating that person. Even if he is not lying to you, he may be deceiving both you and himself.

Posted April 5, 2017 by dranilj1 in Cognitive Biases

Secrecy, In Fact, Is Our Only Salvation

Don’t whine about life. Accept where you are, the people around you, and the events of your life as divine gifts. You are where you should be, in the era and society that is best for you, chosen by the Divine. The spiritual part of a human being is like tuning fork; it vibrates to truth as a tuning fork vibrates when its pitch is played close to it. Trust that God put you where you are, when you are, and with whom you are, for a reason. Believe that there is a plan, that your life is not random, that it matters where you are, when you are, and with whom you are. Recognize that because it was God who decided these things for you, you have a purpose to fulfill or a special accomplishment to achieve that can be done only because you are where you are when you are, and with whom you are. I am a very religious man and believe in predetermination; that our lives are guided by the God who has a plan for every human. Trust your first instinct, do not try to change who you are, do not try to change the people around you, and accept your fate. There exists one’s true self, buried beneath the false image we try to convey to other people. Peel that false image away, and we are all the same at the core. Society is always moving forward against chaos and darkness. You cannot just expect to learn self-reliance in one day and without self-reliance, you will not get very far. Any work done in God’s name does the greatest good. No work can be accomplished without the help of others. Believe in your work and ignore the criticism of others. Every heart vibrates as its own guidance, not the direction of others.

We can talk about our troubles to those who can give us direct help, but even in this case, we must come to a carefully thought out conclusion before the consultation. We have to be perfectly clear to ourselves about our own limitations. Most of us have a foolish trick of applying for help before they have done anything whatever to aid themselves. We try to talk to our self into clearness of insight and intelligibility. The only way such people can think is by talking and their speech consequently is not the expression of an opinion clearly thought and formed, but a manufacture of it. One should be very careful when we speak about our pained emotions. The expression is apt to carry with it exaggeration. By being reserved, we are able to attach less importance to that which is not worthwhile to mention to others; therefore, secrecy, in fact, is our only salvation. Keeping one’s problem to oneself will lessen the severity of its impact on us.

Success is Not Measured by Results

As we get educated, we realize that jealousy is ignorance and any sort of imitation is suicide. We come to the understanding that for better or worse even though the world is full of good, picking someone’s knowledge and understanding will leave us dissatisfied. We have to do our own internal work. Don’t rely on an earthly authority or society to tell you what is right for you to do. Your destiny is unique to you. The power in you is new, and no one but you know what you can do, and one will not know what one is endowed innately until one has tried. Each of us has been made the way we are so that we can see our own truth. Each of us will receive the truth that is right for us. Do not strive for perfection. Let us only try to commit all our effort and attention to the goals we are trying to accomplish. Genuinely, put time, hard work, and dedication into your craft, whatever task you are doing. It does not matter how minuscule the task is, do it with all your effort. Success is not measured by results. Success is you attempting something with intentions of doing your best. This is something that we continually should try to live by.

Good People, With Good Causes, Suck You In

Believe in your own thought. You do as you feel when you feel it is right. If you believe in yourself you do not have to depend on others to think for you. State aloud your sleeping conviction that is inside you waiting to come out so that they could be universally accepted; for in due time, the inmost becomes the outermost and our first thought will come back to us at the end when it is too late to do anything about it. Speak not what others want you to speak but what you think. Learn to identify and observe that non-directional light that is feeble and unsteady which flashes across your mind from within, more than the stars light of all the poets and philosophers. Our own thoughts are more important for ourselves at least more than all the thoughts of poets and philosophers. We dismiss our thoughts only to recognize it when it comes back to us with a certain alienated majesty from others. We should pay attention to our own thoughts, impressions, observations, and insights. There is one big difference between great poets and thinkers of the past and ourselves and that is they are all dead and we are alive. Stand by your spontaneous impression with a cool detachment to the whole cry of voices on the other side. Else, tomorrow a stranger will say with masterly good sense precisely what you have thought and felt all the time, and you shall be forced to take with shame your own opinion from another. It is so easy to fall in line and do all the things that the society associates with a perfect life. It is the good people, with good causes, who can really suck you in.

Quite Mind

Our brain is the center of all our perceptions. More acute and alert our perception is more sensitive and sharper our brain will be. Brain is also the place where memory resides. Brain is where our experiences, knowledge and tradition are stored. Our brain’s pursuits are all planned, clearly thought out in accordance to reason and logic and all reasons and logic functions in limitation of space and time. The brain cannot understand the complete mind. When our mind is free of greed, envy, ambition, then it can comprehend that which is real.

Love is completeness. The word “love” shows up about 85 times in the Gospels. We know that parental love includes setting boundaries, meting out consequences, and training that can be boring. Even friendship love involves speaking the honest truth, even when it hurts, but I suspect that the charges against us as unloving people have nothing to do with these sorts of things. I suspect that it has to do with what we do because we do not trust the power of love in practice. We rely on force, argument, judgment and authority instead.

Love is the constant feeling of completeness when you are with that someone and not wanting that moment to end for anything. Our brain must develop. Its development will always be from a cause, from a reaction, from violence to non-violence. Our brain has developed from the primitive state. However, refined, intelligent, technical, our mind is, it is still within the confines of space and time.

Humility’s twin is anonymity. Let your brain became very quiet, fully alive with every sense being alert. Such brain is something that is immensely alive, vibrant and then it is not merely a gadget of recording. Self-critical awareness is essential. Imagination and illusion distort clear observation. Illusion will always exist, so long as the urge for the continuation of pleasure and the avoidance of pain exist. Seeking of pleasure and the avoidance of pain always breed illusion. To get away the illusion altogether, understand pain and pleasure, not by control or sublimation, identification or denial of pain and pleasure.

When your mind is quiet your can observe honestly. Can our mind be ever quiet? It can be, when mind becomes very sensitive and is devoid of its extraordinary power of distortion. Nothing ever goes away as long as it does not teach us that we need to know! I am at the same time enchanted and repelled by the intimidating inexhaustibility of life’s variety!

Posted February 11, 2017 by dranilj1 in Brain Myths

Give Shape and Meaning to Life

Looking at the sad struggles of our world and reflecting on this desire to have meaning in our lives, to devote ourselves to some great cause, it could seem that being human such vows are impossible for us to ever fully achieve. I feel it is like getting a chance to re-live my life in richer and better way, once I can see the frailty and error of my old self.

Allowing my desire to devote my life to some good cause and the rule I set to regulate my behavior or thought is organizing principle of my life. The universe will give us all the great causes to hurl ourselves at, but hopefully we will be lucky to avoid such heroic external challenges. Whatever happens to our life, whoever and wherever we find ourselves, we cannot shake off our own, in part illusory, but persistent, self that seems to follow us like a shadow. I have too often punished myself for not changing the world, but overlooked the ever-present challenge of changing myself.

At the start of each New Year, we are encouraged to use arbitrary new start to reflect on our old life and, with renewed insight into our human frailties, start over and live by different rules; setting resolutions for the ‘new-me’ to whom we aspire. It seems to me our vows to adhere to the rule intended to regulate our behavior or thought actually give us not so much commandments to beat ourselves with, but rather, simply, beautiful words, a way to embrace our lives, cultivating the courage to live freely and creatively.

For me, to my surprise I realize that I no longer needed to hold out on my old thought. Rather, the simple act of accepting the rule intended to regulate my behavior or thought and say yes to life, is to encourage my life to vibrate in a new way. Of course nothing changes, but we always have a moment by moment opportunity to reshape our lives. Those vows help me to stop being the jerk I sometimes feel, and reset the compass, and at least aspire to live my life in richer and better way.

Posted February 10, 2017 by dranilj1 in BODY_MIND_HEART_SPIRIT

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Live Life as Life

Despite the fact that we latch on to our ideas of being or non being, we can demolish all concepts set up in our minds and without fixing on reality as any particular thing, open the hand of life and live life as life by letting life to be life.

Posted February 9, 2017 by dranilj1 in Cognitive Biases

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