The emotional feelings we experience are chemical responses. The cause of those responses is what we perceive in our experience. For most when they are insulted they can feel angry, upset or even violent. After the event or insult that is held to be the cause of any feelings the victim of the perceived insult may spend a considerable period of time contributing to a growing narrative that seeks to rationalise and justify what is felt. This stimulus response to an insult is a chemical feeling. Our perception acts like a prescription. The pharmacy of our mind responds with a feeling.
For a long time that feeling has been generically defined as ‘stress’. Stress, nerves and anxiety are the terms used by qualified medical professionals to describe chemical reactions. Stress and anxiety are also known as chemical responses in biological terms and as ‘feelings’ in psychological terms. Using the English language we can define ‘feelings’ as chemical reactions that are felt within the body. For many years a common remedy for unwanted feelings was the prescription of pharmaceutical products that create different chemical effects to change or mask our awareness of the feelings ‘our perception’ alone creates. Nerves, stress and anxiety are the terms used in the doctor/patient dialogue to describe this dynamic.
The prescription of a ‘pharmaceutical product’ for the diagnosis of a psychological condition deals only with the ‘chemical effect’. It does this by changing it or, as demonstrated by an anaesthetic, changes our awareness of it. In traditional medicine the cure seems to be the prescription of a pharmaceutical product to effect the chemistry that produces or inhibits what we call feelings. In contrast to an insult someone may give us a compliment about our appearance, professionalism, talent, parenting skills or we may receive awards for our contribution or performance.
In this latter example we may feel happy, positive emotions and feel pleased or delighted. We are unlikely to go the doctor if we wake up one morning feeling a chemical effect that we define as ‘happy’. Now this may be difficult to accept but we are not the victim of our bad feelings. We are the creator of them. Unless born ill, violently attacked or the victim of sickness or accident we cannot feel bad unless we choose to feel bad. More precisely, unless born ill, violently attacked or the victim of accident or illness we are choosing to feel bad.
Feeling bad and getting angry is a pre-arranged, rehearsed behaviour. I may compliment someone and they feel good and then I insult them and they feel bad. Before they can feel good or bad they must discern the insult from the compliment. So the mind must use its own judgement of what it is experiencing before it can respond in chemical terms. The mind is the most powerful pharmacy there is. It is far wiser and more effective than any product manufactured in a pharmaceutical plant. In order to create a specific chemical response the mind requires a metaphorical prescription.
The mind is the pharmacy and prescription is our own judgement. Our judgement is based upon our perception. Perception is not based upon our experiences but upon what we believe about our experiences. For example two people may go to a party together. One may really enjoy the party, love the music and enjoy the conversation. The other person may enjoy the music but feel uncomfortable because their ex-wife is there with a new partner. The stimulus will be the wife and the response will be what is felt by her ex-husband.
The cause of the contrasting feelings which are defined in emotional terms is our perception of the experience but not the experience. It is our perception that is creating the chemical responses defined by medical professionals in emotional terms. Now this leads to the question ‘If I change my perception of my experiences will my chemical reactions change?’ Will I stop feeling depressed? The answer is yes. In order to change how we perceive what we define to be reality we must understand how what the doctor defines to be ‘stress’ works. Stress is a ‘stimulus response’.
What is described as a stress response or emotion is really a chemical response. So if stress is a stimulus induced chemical response then it is not possible to feel ‘stress’ unless the mind is exposed to or thinks about the ‘stimulus’. For example I may get bitten by a dog and feel anxious when I see a dog and feel fear when I am close to a dog. The cause of my future feelings is not the dog but what I believe about ‘dogs’. For the stimulus response to be sustained I must have an explicit or implied belief regarding all dogs. My beliefs sustain my perception of the stimulus.
So the cause of my response is not the dog but my perception of dogs. What sustains my perception and reaction to the stimulus is what I believe about the stimulus. In order to ensure that I do not forget what I have judged the stimulus to be my mind creates chemical reactions experienced as ‘fear’ and ‘thoughts’ to generate self-talk intended to ensure that my original judgement has dominion over what I think and feel when I am exposed to the stimulus. Stress and anxiety is evidence of the most powerful pharmacy in existence and our power over it. The mind is the pharmacy.
Alchemy does not refer to silver or gold but to joy and happiness. Alchemy can transform what is perceived as hell into paradise. If I went to heaven how would I know I was there? I would know by what I felt. The cause of many perceiving the world as a place of fear, worry, stress and sadness is what they believe. What is the source of this faith in our beliefs? The source of our judgement is the source of our beliefs. What we believe is influenced by education, industry, government, legislation and religion. The media appears to be the universal medium used for that influence.
If we want peace of ‘mind and body’ then we must stop judging our experiences using our perception. It is only beliefs that can prejudice our perception. Perception is not vision it is the projection of the beliefs that we individually use to define our experiences. ‘We can only believe what we do not know’. In Matthew 7:1-3 it was said, “Judge not, that ye be not judged, for with what judgment ye judge, you shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.” Our perception is that judgement.
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