You and I often hear this phrase, and maybe sometimes use it.
“I’m in two minds about that”
Which means, usually, that they can’t ‘make up’ their mind, or that they can’t decide between two alternatives.
Of course, you and I and everyone else, most of the time, have a ‘conversation’ going on in our heads.
Or is it in our brain, or our ‘mind’?
And what is this ‘mind’ thing anyway?
A dictionary definition is –
“the element of a person that enables them to be aware of the world and their experiences, to think, and to feel; the faculty of consciousness and thought.”
But there is evidence that ‘the mind’ still operates when people are in a coma or ‘unconscious’.
And surely there’s a difference between ‘consciousness’ and ‘thought’.
Science doesn’t seem to have an answer, even though a great deal of work has been done recently into how the brain operates.
Physically there appear to be three parts to the brain.
The primitive or ‘reptile’ brain that deals mostly with ‘fight or flight’ reactions to the environment.
The ‘sub-conscious’ or sometimes ‘unconscious’ brain that deals with the general operation of the body and stores the memories. You could call this the body’s ‘operating system’.
And then there’s the conscious, thinking, creative brain that appears to come up with ideas and ways to process them, sometimes called the ‘higher’ brain.
And according to the research, the way it ‘works’ is all about electrical pulses or signals travelling along pathways inside the brain through networks of neurons.
New research has revealed that these ‘pathways’ can change or be changed over time and aren’t ‘set in stone’ as was previously thought.
All this is very technical and scientific but it doesn’t go anywhere towards explaining how the mind works or even what it is!
It can explain how I’m writing this by causing my fingers to move on the keyboard and my eyes to see where to put them but it doesn’t explain either why I’m doing it, or how I generate the content of the message.
I can sit and think about what I’m going to write about and choose my starting point – my ‘higher’ brain can call on information stored in my sub-conscious ‘hard drive’ (from where by the way nothing gets erased – but it’s often not ‘filed’ very well!)
But then something else happens: I get ‘ideas’. Paths appear in my mind which I then follow (usually!). But they weren’t there when I started.
The words and ideas just come, and you and I have heard this before from many musicians, artists and writers.
But you and I have to take notice when this happens because it’s not just about ‘the arts’ – it’s about everything that we choose to do.
Perhaps, instead of two, there are three minds.
Our ‘two minds’ are the ones that deal with what we know and argue the pros and cons of this that and the other, the ‘voices’ that seem never to stop ‘talking’ in our heads.
But of course, it’s only ‘in our heads’ because that’s where we’ve located it, sometimes it can be in our ‘heart’ or maybe it’s a ‘gut’ feeling.
You know when you have a ‘great idea’? And then you ‘forget’ about it and it ‘goes away’?
Isn’t it strange the pretty soon someone else has the same idea and instead of ignoring it, takes action?
The ‘ideas’ and sometimes the feelings that go along with them don’t come from our ‘inside’ minds but from the third mind – the ‘outside’ mind or as some would have it the ‘universal mind’.
But that ‘mind’ isn’t outside you and I, it’s within us, and it’s within everyone.
That’s why different people ‘think up’ the same ideas.
When you get a ‘gut feeling’ about something or your ‘heart’ is telling you something or your ‘intuition’ is telling you that something is the right or wrong thing to do – that’s the universal mind, the third mind, guiding you in the direction you should be going.
Notice what you’re noticing.
You see, it’s not an ‘external’ influence, it’s within all of us, it’s what makes us human ‘beings’. It’s only those people who ignore the third mind and get trapped in their human ‘bodies’ (or as Mary Morrissey would call them ‘earth suits’) and just ‘exist’ rather than growing and developing into who they are meant to be.
I’m taking notice.
How about you?