Science and Spirituality Behind Dreams and Manifestation

affirmations and manifestations
The below excerpt is a perspective on dreams, manifestation and spirituality by a noted psychologist and a leading neuroscientist who researches the phenomenon of meditation. From the psychologist our manifestations derive from the stress of necessity to protect ourselves and survive in the face of threat or a challenging situation.  The neurologist believes A leading meditiation reseacher seeis it differently: "Religions have always encouraged believers to let go and 'allow the grace of god to flow through us.' To let go, to ponder the greatness of creation, such as the flow of a river, is to allow the imagination to see things on such a grand perspective. Such is the state of mind that has clearly induced individuals to have a "religious experience." Something so devine, brought about by allowing ourselves to open up to the limitless possibilities can indeed bring about miracles.
The Law of Attraction as told by Abraham, aka Esther and Jerry Hicks and William Walker Atkinson creates a complete framework for manifestation through meditation, focus, awareness and joy.

The Science Of Spirituality: A Psychologist And A Neuroscientist Explain Being 'In The Flow'

From the psychologist:

“A lot of research looks at what happens when you’re stressed,” he says. “The study that I like a lot is the one looking at Israeli paratroopers – they had them look at these pictures that look very fuzzy. In first one, you can clearly see through fuzz, an image of Saturn. In the next, there’s nothing there, just fuzz. If you give these paratroopers these two diagrams, they see Saturn, and most will say, ‘I don’t see anything’ in the other. But if they take the test right before they do a jump, they’re much more likely to see something in the one where there is nothing.”

This is very much like what’s happening when we’re going out about our daily lives, stressed out, trying to control things in that tense, clenching way. “We end up looking for patterns where they don’t exist,” says Michaelis, “which are physical manifestation of stress. We’re pattern-seeking creatures. But the idea is to come from the outlook of, ‘there may or may not be a pattern, but I’m not going to worry about it.’ So first, you get out of own way by not making situation worse.”

A neuroscientist explains it differently

These are some really valuable psychological takes on the phenomenon. But what would a neuroscientist say? Judson Brewer, MD, PhD, who’s done some of the leading research on how meditation affects the brain, offers an interesting analogy for our usual way of being: “The simplest metaphor is that it’s like driving a car with one foot on the break and one on the gas,” he says. “In the analogy, the gas is our brains’ the natural function, and the brake is self-referential processing. If you take foot off the break, the brain functions more effortlessly. Our brain is like ‘thank god, you got out of the way.’” And that’s when we get into the flow.

Brewer has talked about this phenomenon (see his TEDx talk here) and his research, which has shown that meditation quiets the areas of the brain that are the equivalent to the “brakes”—the default mode network (DMN)—which helps us get into a flow state very quickly. He adds that to get out of our own way, and even out of more significant states, like depression, you have to utilize other methods besides your usual mode of thinking: What got us into this mess can’t get us out, he says. “Here’s the paradox: You’re the problem. You can’t solve the problem with the same consciousness that created it. Saying to yourself, ‘I’m going to make myself one with the universe’ is a futile task. It’s just like someone telling you to relax. It doesn’t work. We naturally let go, when we see how painful our usual process is.”

He acknowledges that there’s a place for “the universe prompt,” as he calls it—the idea of consciously giving in to something bigger. “Every religious tradition that I’ve seen has something like this, just with different words. It’s letting go of the small self, so grace of god can flow through us. ‘Advaita vedanta’ [from the Upanishads]; in Catholicism, it’s emptying so god can flow. The universe prompt is helpful,” he adds, “where I realize I don’t need to do anything. That can be part of the work, but it’s not all of it.”

As to whether flow is our natural state, or the product of being in tune with something greater, he says this. “Does something (like the universe or God) need to be creating something that is our natural propensity? In other words, what makes water flow downhill (instead of uphill)? Our brain has evolved for efficiency. 'Flow' is likely a manifestation of the brain working in optimal conditions.”

The teachings Esther and Jerry Hicks in the Law of Attraction, a channeling biography sees things more spiritually.

Many have overcome their inhibitions to manifest by thinking on the principals of the universe that may be invoked to open our minds open and clear the heart.

In channeling Abraham they propose that a "guidance system that indicate how close or distant that person is to how their source"  and that life is meant to be fun and easy.

The essence of Abraham–Hicks' teachings since 1986 has been presented as follows:

  • Individuals are physical extensions of the non-physical.
  • People are in their bodies because they chose to be.
  • The basis of life is freedom; the purpose of life is joy; the result of life is growth.
  • People are creators; they create with their thoughts and attention.
  • Whatever people can imagine clearly with emotion, by creating a perfect vibrational match, is theirs to be, or do, or have.
  • Individuals choose their creations as they choose their focus.
  • Emotions indicate what people are creating, either consciously or unconsciously.
  • The universe adores people; it knows their broadest intentions.
  • Individuals are invited to happily relax into their natural well-being and know that all is well.
  • Life is not meant to be a struggle, but a process of allowing.
  • People are creators of "thoughtways" on their unique "paths of joy".
  • Desirable physical manifestations such as money, relationships, and lifestyle success are by-products of focusing on joy.
  • Individuals may depart their body without illness or pain.
  • People cannot die; their lives are everlasting. Death of the physical body does not end the life of the individual.
  • The nature of the universe is life-affirming. It is infinite, creative and expanding.
  • All desire can be fulfilled.
  • Individuals are not only a part of the universe but are the very source of it.

A large part of Hicks' work centers around the law of attraction, a concept which William Walker Atkinson (1862–1932) wrote about in his book Thought Vibration or the Law of Attraction in the Thought World (1906).

Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat Hanh

Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh is a global spiritual leader, poet and peace activist, revered throughout the world for his powerful teachings and bestselling writings on mindfulness and peace. His key teaching is that, through mindfulness, we can learn to live happily in the present moment—the only way to truly develop peace, both in one’s self and in the world. A prolific writer, Thich Nhat Hanh has published over 100 titles in English, ranging from classic manuals on meditation, mindfulness and Engaged Buddhism, to poems, children’s stories, and commentaries on ancient Buddhist texts.

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