What is yoga? Is it a downward dog? Is it a child’s pose? Is it touching your toes? Does it require a mat? Of all the possible words and phrases you could use to describe yoga, it’s probably easier to say what it isn’t rather than what it is. Yoga is not a frosty glass of Mr. Pibb. What about something you can touch? You can probably describe what a cup is with sufficient detail, but at what point does a cup become a bowl? Or a plate? As with everything, it comes down to your subjective experience. The same goes for describing a human. While the form of a body is a useful reference, most would say the essence of being human is consciousness and the ability to reference the self. And while this is a textbook definition, you’d never be able to describe what it feels like to be human without experiencing it. If you look past something’s physicalness, whether that’s an object or a goal or a memory or a concept, you realize it’s mostly made up.
As with all physical reality, every cell and molecule is composed of atoms. Within the traditional solar system model of an atom, 99.99999% of what constitutes matter is made of empty space. Yet this is an outdated model. We now know that the subatomic particles within them behave just like Einstein’s understanding of light, acting as both waves and particles at the same time, where you can’t know both the position and momentum of the particle with certainty. In fact, they appear to be disappearing and reappearing through a quantum field that defies Newtonian physics. Only when observed does it collapse into physical reality.* So why do we focus on the 0.00001% of reality when most of it, if not all of it, is energy?
When we have a vision of a desired future, there’s often a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow we hope to acquire. We can break it down into a series of strategies and steps that should logically result in that outcome. But just like you can’t touch a rainbow, you won’t hold the treasure you truly desire when you reach for a goal that’s outside of you. This is much how quantum physics works. There both is a treasure, and there isn’t. Your idea of success is real, and it isn’t. Schrodinger’s cat is both alive and dead at the same time. You are both wealthy and poor. It’s all relative to your perspective. And perspective, your subconscious mind, is stored in the body.
This is where everything starts to get real for us. The gut intuition, the trauma, the feelings, the stories, the heart. The body is a lithographic record of interpreted thoughts that crystalize into neurons and synapses. Each thought stimulates an emotional charge from an experience of the environment that deepens the groove, codifying our personality. The body obeys the mind. And as thought coincides with action, so follows the brain’s connection between the two. Hebb’s Law states nerves that fire together wire together. This manifestation of energy into physical matter contains the superposition of the underlying possibilities that permeates reality — the nerves, the circulatory system, the limbic system — all bifurcating as beautiful, efficient biomechanics and fractal geometry that can be modeled by traditional physics, producing a body that aligns with our thoughts. But consciousness is still the tricky element to this collapsed wave-function that we call a body and a body of experiences. There’s this blurred line between energy and our consciousness of it via our bodies and everything we experience “outside” of “it”.
Humans are different than animals. A gazelle reacts to the external stimuli of a lion, which triggers its parasympathetic nervous system to generate a fight or flight response (probs flight in this case). And when the threat has passed it goes back to grazing. Humans, on the other hand, are able to recall a memory on demand and live it in the present as if it’s actually happening right now. Identifying with a thought like anger, guilt, jealousy, judgment, or lack (which again are all energy) subconsciously wires that into your body as a physiological response. Receptor sites on the cells’ membrane are trained and replicated to anticipate those chemicals to make the body run more efficiently. Like Pavlov’s dog, we condition ourselves to expect certain rewards and punishments. If done over the course of hours, days, or years a thought can turn into a mood, then a temperament, and eventually a personality trait, ultimately altering our genetic framework.**
“You think that’s air you’re breathing?” — Morpheus
Energy is required to create movement so that fluids and nutrients get to the cells, enabling the body to function. Energy is also required to metabolize the nutrients in the cells and is called for to lubricate and maintain the structure of the cell (🎵 mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell! 🎵). Most of these actions are carried out subconsciously. If that same subconscious is being reinforced by thoughts with negative energy, could your thoughts be the source of disease? Your dis-ease? Obviously food and exercise are an important factor, but that’s energy too, and if your body has processed guilt as the emotion you associate with indulgent snacks or not working out, and your cells are conditioned to expect that response, they become desensitized to those chemicals and require a bigger ‘hit’ in order to maintain homeostasis for the feeling of guilt, thus reinforcing worse eating behaviors and missed workouts. You essentially become a drug addict for the emotion of guilt.***
If your thoughts constitute your personality — your personal reality — would you ever let another go by unexamined? To say you don’t have something is the basis for cognitive dissonance, which is the seed of stress and misalignment with your true nature. Understanding this comes with a tremendous amount of power and responsibility. Asking for what you want becomes a matter of intention, and the universe always responds with a yes. Who you are being reflects what you’ll receive, not your plans or strategies. You believe the experience generates the thought when they’re actually the same thing. If you’re feeling stressed and angry you’ll keep getting stressful and frustrating experiences. Assuming you can think your way out of a situation through pure will is exhausting if you believe you are separate from your environment. Living this way guarantees you either constantly need to be in control or you’re a victim to circumstance. There’s no “you” when energy is everything, and frankly, it’s exhausting and a waste of energy to think otherwise.
What I’m saying is that everything you think is reality. There’s a game of chicken and egg going on here. What came first? Energy or consciousness? Consciousness is energy, and energy is matter. We are mindful-matter. Therefore we create reality. This quantum field of energy permeates every experience, anticipation, and memory. It spans beyond space and time. Past, present, and future are entangled within this all-knowing intelligence that sees every decision you make, living at the crossroads of infinite possibilities. I’m describing God, but not one that’s separate from Man living in the clouds, passing judgment on who goes to heaven or hell. It is impossible for God to judge, punish, threaten, or banish anyone or anything because it would be doing those very things to itself. How can such a source of complete presence and energy be characterized by anything other than Love? This is the true you. You are Light because at an energetic level you are no matter. No matter what you do, it’s perfect.
If that’s true, then how do we relate to such ephemeral energy in an everyday world of physical, cause and effect experiences? It’s hard to see this true reality as such when you don’t have your dream home and a piña colada. You must look past the “I don’t have X” mentality, thinking you have to compete for everything, and that you have to “figure it all out”. It’s the way you’re being that’s given you everything you have in this world. This universal consciousness communicates through intent and the energy of unconditional love. So in order to get what you want, you must be the type of person who knows that anything is possible and everything is working out as it should.. But as of right now it’s impossible to access these possibilities if your body is physically anchored in the past. This is why positive thinking alone never works. Your subconscious is powerful and it’ll take training to rewire the programs of your past traumas so that it is congruent with your most noble thoughts.
Your body doesn’t know the difference between an actual experience and the thoughts that generate happiness, freedom, despair, or sadness. Focusing your attention on gratitude, joy, and love is the mindset of having received everything you want. This primes your body, your subconscious mind, to receive everything you ask before the actual experience of it. If you have the personality of someone who thinks that life is competitive, difficult, and dangerous then your body will prepare you for that environment. But if you have the personality that experiences the world as kind, easy, abundant, and fun then your body will be open to those blessings and miracles. The heart opens up to novel possibilities.
Don’t be alarmed. Losing yourself and giving up your control in faith that everything will work out can be scary — if that’s what you tell yourself 😉. I say it’s exciting! How many great movies have you seen where the ending was predictable? Knowing the plot is boring. Life is about twists and turns. It’s about the experience. Everyone always wants to know how life’s gonna turn out. “I just wanna be secure.” You wanna know how life turns out? It’s exactly the way it is right now. The rich and famous are just as happy or unfulfilled as they were before achieving their notions of success. Have you ever had a goal you achieved and realized it wasn’t all you imagined it to be? Getting the girl or guy doesn’t make you whole and complete, nor does the new outfit change your personality. This is why the material, physical world often disappoints when you set expectations. Externalizing your desires is the source of suffering — The Buddha.
The number one regret of the dying is that they wish they had the courage to live a life that was true to themselves. As the Stoics say, “memento mori”, remember death. But in a world of energy, there is no life and death. All is a continuation of itself. Just as a tree grows, the branches and leaves grow and die throughout the seasons, falling to the ground to nourish the soul and roots. If a branch goes “out on a limb” but fails to reach the sun, that failure becomes its strength as the fertile ground for the tree to keep growing. In effect, there’s no such thing as failure.
So go scratch that itch. Even if it’s your buttcrack. It doesn’t matter what other people think. You’re the only one judging yourself. Morality is all in your head. Love all of it. You can do no wrong.
Each paragraph above could be made into its own post, or a book. In fact, that’s already the case. Much of what I’ve outlined above is a summary from reading Dr. Joe Dispenza’s “Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself” and I highly recommend it. He also wrote, “You Are the Placebo”, which points to the medical significance of your brain’s role in believing it’s being healed. In short, your thoughts actually matter.
* This is the “Copenhagen interpretation” of quantum theory, and is one of many competing theories, including the Many Worlds Theory which extends Schrodinger’s equations to the macro scale, and David Bohm’s holographic model of Wholeness. Ask a physicist what the fundamental truths are of consensus reality and they’ll say, “we don’t know.” To learn more about this I highly encourage you to read this fascinating and ridiculously short introduction to some very basic quantum mechanics.
** This is the study of epigenetics. Darwinian evolution notes that the action which correlates to changes in the environment stimulates those genes to evolve in response to it. If the gazelle is always faster, then the lion will grow longer feet and claws over generations. Humans are able to do this much faster than plants and animals as they continually recall thoughts that reinforce perceived environmental forces.
*** To be clear, there’s nothing wrong your thoughts or any dis-order you may be experiencing, consciously or subconsciously. You don’t know what you don’t know. Listening to your body becomes the doorway to a conversation and opens you up to ask the question, “does this feeling serve me?”