Book review: Freedom from negative thoughts-Guy Finley

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Disclaimer: All the copyrights belong to the respective author/s of the book. The purpose of the book summary and review is to promote the book and share some of the great points from the work.

Cool Bluez Rating (7.5/10)

A wonderful book for changing your thought process, your perception about yourself, the hardships of life and our view of others. If you feel that you get hurt, down, depressed, hopeless and are losing spirit and energy in life, this book will help you gain strength and place your feet back on the ground.

Selected points from the book:

You know forgiveness of others is the kindest thing you can for yourself.

You realize the world is the way it is because you are the way you are.

The very fact that you know there’s father to go before your journey to freedom is complete also tells you that wherever you may find yourself standing today or a thousand days from now is just a place you have to pass through on your way to where you’re going. And you’re going to be free! So agree to put all discouraging places where they belong; behind you!.

All judgments of others as they are drawn into an event make you both a part and a prisoner of that same event. So stay awake to this tendency. Stay free.

When it comes to changing the unhappy conditions you meet in life, remember that nothing about your life can change…until you do.

A hundred times a day, notice how un-free you feel, and then feel free to drop that feeling.

The next time you feel overwhelmed by some contrary condition, remember the only power that circumstance has over you is what you want from it.

Your experience of this world is determined by how you think towards it, which is why, as you change the way you think toward yourself, you also change the world you live in.

When inwardly challenged to come to any fear-filled decision, never let yourself forget that struggling to get more of what hasn’t brought you happiness can’t possibly make you anymore happy.

The more you think, the more you sink. Exactly the opposite of what you think you’re accomplishing. And the deeper you sink in thought, the less you’re able to see what the rest of you is doing.

We look for someone who has a strength we can’t seem to find in ourselves. We search for some situation in which we can remain secure. We seek a pleasure that won’t turn into it’s painful opposite. But the freeing facts are we are never betrayed by any situation, nor by any other person who we hoped would be strong for us, but who turns out to be weak, cruel or underhanded. No the real betrayal is always when we listen, without question, to our own mind tell us we need another’s approval in order to feel secure, or to succeed. We are betrayed each time we pick up the false idea that there’s strength in numbers; so now we must find a way to make ourselves fit in, if we want to feel safe. These mistaken, and ultimately self-betraying, walls of though-and all others like them-have to fall. They are not real. The free mind is a life without any such walls, and without all of their falls.

Don’t fear anything you may see in yourself or anywhere else. Don’t pick up these feelings either. They just want to load you down with a false sense of self-borne out of an equally false sense of responsibility. No fear belongs to you, now or ever. The free mind knows this. And it knows what to do about all other forms of disturbance-all without thinking. Let it tell you what you need to know and one day you’ll know what it means to live fully, safely, and securely from the free mind.

Each morning, before you launch into your usual routine, find somewhere where you can sit quietly by yourself for about ten minutes. If you have to get up earlier to make this time for yourself, then just do it. Use this time to do nothing except to be conscious of how your own mind refuses to join you in doing nothing. But don’t work at this attempt to be thought free. Instead just silently observe how your thoughts won’t stand still; see just how thought ‘full’ you really are. Again your aim is not to ‘do’ something with these ten minutes, but see something about yourself during them. This is healthy self-acquaintance. Let your growing awareness that these tumbling thoughts have a life of their own serve as your first step in separating yourself from their influence. This is the marvelous beginning of self-silence. Up until now, you may have never questioned the notion your thoughts didn’t really belong to you. Now you can begin to witness this fact. This exercise will help you see that your real nature is not any of those thoughts passing through you. Living without thoughts about yourself isn’t far behind this inner discovery.

These three words I CAN LEARN are the most powerful 3 words in any language. Nothing in the universe can hold down that rare individual who clearly realizes that he or she doesn’t know what’s in the way of his or her happiness, but who is willing to find out. If painful patterns are prisons without walls, then a willingness to learn the new and the true is the same as a gateway to freedom.

Turning to learning begins with the honest recognition that our present approach to solving personal problems just doesn’t work.

Reactions never reveal, they conceal. Remaining under the rule of any reaction limits your choices in life to only the direction that reaction gives you to take. But the key point is this; no reaction-supplied direction can ever lead anywhere higher than the level of the reaction.

We all know many men and women who think they already know everything. They are in great spiritual danger that they can’t see but that we must make visible for ourselves. False self-certainty is an invisible form of self-stagnation.

Vernon Howard once asked a small group of his students “If you know so much, why do you suffer the way you do?”

Asking ourselves the truth about our own hidden inner condition, at just the right moments, causes the false certainty created by our strong reactions to fade. Temporary but necessary self-uncertainty follows.

1st law; Nothing can stop you from starting over: Life gives us a fresh start any moment you choose to start fresh. Nothing that stood in your way even a heartbeat before stands there now in the same way. You’ve only to test the incredible freedom that waits for you just behind it. And then nothing can stop you.

2nd law: Don’t be afraid to see when something doesn’t work: Learn to be sensitive and to listen to the inner signals that try and tell you when something is not working e.g. frustration and resentment to name just a few. These emotions don’t mean that you can’t succeed, only that the road you’ve insisted upon taking so far doesn’t lead you where you want. Learning to admit when something isn’t working is the same as teaching yourself what will.

3rd law: If it doesn’t flow, there’s more to know: The friction you feel mounting when busy at some labor is never caused by the task at hand but by what you don’t yet know about it. This means the only real reason for your strain is that you’ve got hold of a wrong idea you don’t yet see as wrong, it will allow you to release yourself by showing you what you need to know.

4th law: Don’t take the easy way: Learn to see ‘easy way’ as a lying thought that keeps you tied up and doing hard time. Getting something over is not the same as having it completed. The complete way is the easy way. So volunteer to make the ‘hard way’ your way and learn the real easy way.

5th law: On the other side of the resistance is the flow: At times it feels that you can’t go any farther in your work or studies, but you can learn to go beyond any blockage. These moments don’t tell you that you’ve done as far as you can go but only reveal that you’ve reached as far as you know-for now. It is just a threshold not a closed door. Walk through it. Nothing can stop you.

6th law: Watch for the opportunity to learn something new: Everything is changing all the time. Just as you’re part of everything, everything is part of you. The whole of life is connected. And your ability to learn is part of the wonder of this complete, but ever changing, whole. Learn something new everyday and you’ll love how that makes you feel about yourself.

7th law: Learn to see conclusions as limitations: All conclusions are illusions when it comes to the security they promise. There may be security in a prison but there are also no choices behind it’s confining walls. The seeming security these conclusions offer are a poor substitute for the real security of knowing that who you really are is a always free to be something higher.

8th law: Have no fear of being afraid: Fear can’t learn which is why you must learn about fear if you ever wish to be a fearless learner. Fear is not a fact of life but only becomes one for you as long as you insist that life perform according to what you think are your best interests. As you learn to see that these fearful feelings don’t belong to you, but only to your wrong thinking, you cease to be afraid, even of your own fears.

9th law: Never accept defeat: As long as it’s possible to learn, you need never feel tied down by any past defeat in your life. Real wisdom calls you to join in a special kind of struggle and if this battle had a banner under which to rally, here’s what would be written upon that higher call to arms “But I can find out”. You may not know the real reasons why you feel so lonely or worried at times, but you can find out. Take these four words that are freedom’s battle cry. Use them to defeat what’s defeating you.

10th law: Learn to let go of painful pretense: Most people approach their problems with 2 non-solutions; 1. They either pretend that their problem isn’t a problem or 2. They’ve solved their troubles with temporary cover-ups. When faced with any pain, let go of what you think you know. Act towards your trouble as if you don’t know anything about it. This is truth because you don’t know what the real problem is otherwise you wouldn’t still have it.

11th law: Persistence always prevails: If you get what you think you have to have to be happy and you’re still not satisfied, then you’ve learned what you don’t want. Now you can go on to higher things. And should you learn you’ve been wearing yourself out with useless wishes, then his discovery allows you to turn your energies in a new direction; self liberation.

The me mind always begins with the assumption that whatever your current pain may be, it must be real. And more importantly, hidden in this same unsuspected assumption is the me mind’s wrong reasoning that since that ache is lodged in your heart-it must follow that pain belongs to you.

No matter how familiar that grief or anger may seem as it floods through you, allow your new awareness to help you just consciously brush aside what you think you know about it. Make it your heartfelt intention to see what that pain is trying to tell you about you.

Your new life begins the moment you choose to leave your old one behind you. In each moment that you don’t choose in favor of your own freedom, a choice was made for you in favor of your increased captivity. Without your relaxed awareness of some thought or feeling as it courses through your psychic system, you don’t have the choice whether or not to be that thought or feeling. You can wake up right in the middle of any thought that may be terrorizing you and see that’s all it was ; a thought. The greatest darkness in the world becomes powerless, and then disappears, in the light of higher learning. In life you always become what you love.

Painful reactions to life events are just mechanical, emotional knee jerks. They only become more than a package from the past when the me mind says “I” to the first reaction. This misplaced identification may feel like you, but it’s not. And now you can learn this rescuing fact for yourself. Each time you feel a reaction about to take you over, just relax from yourself. Let that reaction be there, within you, without your involvement. Don’t say “I” to it.

Everything depends upon what you really want. Want to shake off the shakes once and for all? Then begin by getting fed up with the shaking, stop doing what the shaking tells you to do. You wouldn’t ask a ghost to show you the way out of the house it haunts, so why take directions from any fear on the way to end your trembling?

Refuse to blame the way the world turns for your own anxious or desperate actions.

Practice breaking thought. Go mentally silent. Just become aware of yourself without thinking about it. Break into that swarm of thoughts and feelings, over an over again, with your awareness of their presence. This will silence them and show you where you have been.

It’s time to snap ourselves out of the painful delusion that any individual either possesses or in some way can grant us the power we need to possess ourselves. What we have always mistaken for power in another is only the overpowering false belief that someone else holds the key to our happiness. No one else holds the key to your life. People you once thought of as powerful will be seen as weary pretenders who need you to complete their charade.

No one can give us the approval we seek, because it is not his or hers to give.

Seeking and receiving approval from others is like sitting down hungry to an imaginary meal. Your hunger remains, no fictional meal ever satisfies.

No one can give us that which can only be found within our self. Looking for ourselves in the eyes of others throws us behind the walls of a psychic prison. The door slams shut each time we find ourselves feeling good about ourselves simply because someone has given us a needed nod of approval.

The approval of a hundred thousand people still can’t make you feel real.

Our chief shortcoming when self-sinking feelings make their bid for our attention is that, instead of becoming conscious of their presence, we become their unconscious captives.

In life we’re either self commanding or we are being commanded.

Don’t see individuals as powerful; see them as either being at peace with themselves-or under some other power.

Whatever freedom’s path requires of you it will also supply you, if you just keep walking.

Reactions don’t know anything about relief.

The next time you feel as though you just have to talk to someone about something that’s making you uncomfortable or unhappy, don’t do it. You can learn to use that pressure to free yourself from all such feelings that want to push you around. Here’s the explanation; finding relief is not the same as finding strength. That disturbance within you, whatever it’s reactionary nature isn’t real. It’s really nothing that just feels like you. That’s why you must not do what it urges you to do, or you’ll unconsciously lay claim to it’s weak and self compromising nature. From this moment forward, consciously challenge the right of any dark disturbance to direct your life. Stand your inner ground until its demands drain away. Negative states have no real life of their own, so consciously withdrawing your life from theirs is the same as consciously withdrawing your life from theirs is the same as commanding their dark presence to fade. Once the pressure is off, you can then choose to say something or not, about the conflict that was in question because at this point, you’ll be in command of yourself and the situation, instead of being unconsciously commanded by it.

All forms of clarity are connected to certain calmness, so it the opposite of clarity connected to constant conflict. Can you have a casual, confident manner about yourself in an important meeting if you’re unclear as to why you’re there?

Whenever things are confused in our mind or heart, we’ll also find within us hesitancy, doubt and fear. Taking the law of attraction through a simple progression reveals that once we’re in the hands of one of these shaky inner states that consort with confusion-such as anxiety-what else can we hope to attract but other attending negative states-such as tension and irritability? These brusque emotions are brothers to impatience, whose sister is intolerance which gives birth to cruelty and hatred.

We must resolve to never again go along with, or agree to , any mental or emotional state of negativity. And should you ever hear the me mind trying to convince you that such true self command is impossible; it’s within your power to make this dark inner imp, and all of it’s dark forecasting, disappear. Just quietly demand that it answer one of your questions before you accept it’s terms of defeat. Ask it this; What’s going to happen to me if I continue to cave in, or make compromises, with what has been compromising me? The me mind has to avoid this question at all costs. It knows instinctively that if it ever gave you the real answer, it would mean the complete disappearance of any doubts you may have as to what you must do to free of self compromise.

Fear and worry-no matter what they may be about always betray the one they possess.

We can’t have fear without anxiety. Anxiety cannot exist without unconsciously comparing what we hoped would happen, to our new fears that it won’t. And connected to this spreading fear our expectations won’t be realized is our growing resentment of the situation, or person, we blame for wiping out our hoped for happiness. So bitterness spreads. And as it does, it whispers to us that since we’ve already lost our future, why should we do anything more, for anyone, in the present? Now defiance has the reins and in no time, self righteous anger courses through our veins. Let’s stop here for a moment.

It’s impossible to have one sad state or sour state without another. But there’s still much for us to see. Negativity, like all forms of thought is actually physical in nature. All things physical, all forms of matter, have mass. And any mass in motion has momentum.

Any time we turn our backs on what frightens us, we also turn our backs on the self compromising acts those fear-filled conditions attract. Instead, in the absence of fear and self compromise, we attract what is fearless, which is the same as saying we attract the next higher level of life.

The feeling that you must somehow prove yourself is a lie you no longer need.

The right way to ask for more from life is not to increase your demands, but to release them.

Self correction is the seed of self certainty.

Knowing that you attract what you are, helps you want to be different.

Anger is never real strength, and revenge is always self wrecking long before it ever touches it’s intended victim.

When the best answer you have is to get negative, you’re better off with no answer at all.

Comparing who we think we are to who we think we should be. This kind of self comparison is nothing but the same as self created conflict.

Self comparison, and the internalized conflict it naturally breeds can’t exist without the presence of conflicting images and concepts about yourself within yourself. Some of these concepts of self include what you think is good or bad about your character, how you think others perceive you and what you hope to change about yourself. But by far, the more devious of these concepts and in a special sense parent of them all, is this last great deception; that the ‘you’ who is involved in this constant conflict called self comparison is different from everything else within you that’s being compared. And it’s not.

The psychological pain you feel is not your pain. It’s an effect of the inevitable crash that occurs between unconscious concepts that you have about yourself and reality.

Whatever psychological pains we may live with are the ones we just won’t give up. And the only reason we won’t release these loco-notions about ourselves is because we still wrongly believe that our ideas about who we are is who we troubled and temporary identity they provide. Let go of these concepts and we lose their pains.

Who you really are is not, and cannot be, any thought you may have about yourself.

See the self comparison serves no purpose other than to produce self conflict, and then watch how this painful form of self interest fades away.

If you choose to change right now, then you won’t have to worry about how to be different next time.

Watch for all the opportunities that your own now presents. Keep your efforts personal, practical and to the point. If your inner work doesn’t transform the whole of your life into a more relaxed, amazing, and uplifting experience, then you’re dreaming, not changing.

Go beyond the best that you think you can. Anybody can do what everybody else does-which is usually the minimum to get the maximum. Do more. Take the step you’re sure you can’t. You’ll discover that the ‘you’ who could not is only a thought that believes it cannot.

Step down as judge. The easiest thing in the world is to walk around unconsciously feeling superior to everyone you meet. But with what do you measure? A critical spirit? A judgemental mind? What kind of eyes have to look down on another to convince themselves of up? Step down as judge.

Face those fearful feelings. There is really no such thing as a shaky situations, so nay time you start to tremble, don’t look around you for the fault, look inward. It’s the inner ground you’re standing on that isn’t solid. Any weakness faced by looking in this new direction becomes the foundtation of a new strength. Face those fearful feelings. Fearlessness follows.

Help someone else go higher. There’s no such thing as a separate self, so anything you do to encourage another person to do better, or go farther is the same as helping yourself go higher. Try a little kindness even if you’re not feeling that way at the moment. A kind feeling will follow. Help someone go higher.

Release all resentments. It’s important for you to see that holding on to some hurt or hatred, over what others may have done to you in the past, makes you their slave in the here and now. Is that what you want? Learn to ask something new by refusing to relive what’s been tearing at you. This higher request releases you from raging resentments.

Stop explaining yourself to others. While you’re explaining yourself, at least it feels as though you have a good reason for being excused.

Laugh in the face of defeat. It’s a fact that defeat is nothing but a bad memory. And no memory has any real life of it’s own. This means that the only time you have to feel the pain of any defeat is for you ask for it-by going into troubled thought about some painful past loss. You can have the last laugh on defeat. Stay in the present moment. Learn to laugh now.

Stop looking outside of yourself. Your life is only as complete as you are. No more, no less. Looking to relationships, your work, or even happy events for a feeling of self wholeness is like trying to put a smile on your face in the mirror-while you’re still frowning. Being complete is first an understanding and then a feeling. Stop looking outside of yourself. Seek the understanding. Seek it within. The feeling will follow.

Have your own life. There is no pleasing the fear you may displease others. Allowing what others may feel about what you want-to change the way you feel about that same want-is like believing someone else can put on your sweater and that you’ll feel the warmth! The only real pleasure comes from knowing that you have your own life. Take your life back now.

Separate the fact from the fear. The fact of any problem and the fearful feeling about it are totally separate issues appearing as one. They merge only in a thought telling you one cannot exist without the other, which is like thinking you can’t feel a chill without having the plague. The fear you feel over any situation is the same as your demands upon it. Separate the fact from the fear now.

Know that the time is always now. You can’t change the kind of person you are later. There is no later. It’s always now or never. You can’t be kind later. And you can’t learn later. But even if there seem to be times when you can’t succeed with starting your life over, keep this one Truth in mind. You can always start over again. The time to change your destiny is now!

It’s impossible to lose something you never owned. We don’t own-no one owns-what we call our relationships, our appearance, our authourity, intelligence, even our very own life.

What we actually lose is an image, a carefully constructed mental picture of ourselves long-secured in place by someone or something that helps us to see ourselves-or feel about ourselves-the way we imagine ourselves to be. And with that person, position or possession no longer in place to sustain that image, our pain is in the loss of that imaginary self.

Denial is just another way in which we secretly try to fill the aching space. Instead, remain quietly aware of the pain and of that part of you that would make the ache go away by creating some new image to cling to in the storm. Have nothing to do with either mental creations, nor with their creator. Both originate from the low level of the me mind that’s the source of your sadness. If you allow this divided nature to fill the space, you’ll only have to fill it again and again.

Start seeing that no mental or emotional suffering belongs to you and that it’s presence in your life is invasive-not essential.

Believing that getting what you want will somehow bring an end to your wants is like thinking that a rock rolling down a hill is going to stop somewhere along the way to enjoy the view.

The next time you start to feel sad, or bad, about some loss, come wide awake and be shocked that only a moment before you were sure that you needed to suffer.

The difference between unnatural wants and natural needs is that the former drives you through your life, while the latter nurtures it.

See that every thought-projected pleasure contains it’s own hidden, painful opposite, and you’ll soon know the incorruptible higher pleasure of not being a pain to yourself.

Never believe that you must learn to live with anything that torments you.

Any wish to appear strong in the eyes of others is a secret weakness.

There is no such thing as right reason for wrong feeling.

Stop thinking in terms of where you want to go, and begin thinking in terms of who you need to be.

Don’t try to become great; be great now, and discover that excellence is a reward you don’t need others to confirm.

Learn to use life’s shocks to see that you never collide with anything but yourself.

Stop looking to the temporary for a sense of permanence.

Knowing without thinking is as natural as smiling without wanting anything from anyone.

All self pity is negative self fascination.

You can be just as free as you’re willing to see where you may be standing in your own way.

Lose interest in holding on to any feeling of loss.

Spend everyday casual, but industrious; every moment alert but relaxed.


The page is a part of Cool Bluez (2011)