Home > Uncategorized > I Was Ahead of My Time. (And still am.)

I Was Ahead of My Time. (And still am.)

I was quoted in magazines, including California Lawyer- see here and here— 10 years ago, And more.

And I dared write this,  way back then on, Divorcenet. (Two of my articles were so popular they are still on the Nolo version. (Here and here.)

So, here is is again, in 2012. Yes, You Can! The Power of Intent

© 2007 Carroll Straus

Most spouses are powerless and unhappy in  the bewildering and frankly toxic legal system. Dealing with ex-spouses is not going to be easy, and the system is a juggernaut, once it gets rolling.  To stop it alone is impossible. HOWEVER– one factor we can become empowered by is our intent. The dictionary defines “intent” as “aim or purpose…”object, plan or design.”

What the dictionary omits is how a clear “aim, goal, purpose or design” can alter the course of our court case.  But it can! In a “litigated” divorce, and co-parenting with an angry or distant “ex”, you may discover that your clarity of aim is all you can take charge of.  We can only control what is in our hands. And that is only… us.

You have heard, “We are co-creators of our own reality.”  (Most recently the much-hyped movie “The Secret” has given a wider audience to this.) Some of you say, “Oh, yeah!”  Some may be baffled or skeptical.  There is, nevertheless, truth (and hard science) to this belief,  in the “real world.”   Certainly it is 100% true of our inner world. The evidence can range from the obvious (being obsessed with “losing” a significant other and driving them away) to the subtle– repeating life patterns, some good, some painful. (I just had an insight today about one of mine!) This is due to early learning we are blind to. We miss the “cause and the effect”, but they are there.  These “programs” run our lives.  We easily see them in others, on TV. Our own are invisible, except in the “mirror” of those around us.

This invisible factor in all our doings, our Intent, is the main ingredient in the quality of our lives.  And deep in our hearts, way beneath the surface, we know this.  We often feel our intent — where we are “coming from” as we go out merry way.  We all know the feel of a mean comment like “I thought you invented stubborn.” (Yes this was one of mine!) It feels vile, as though we’d been subtly stabbed in the gut.  On the other hand we know the warm, fuzzy feeling we get when someone says, “You’re terrible” — with love. We feel it when the words don’t match the “heart”. We feel the hidden agenda. And when the covert  actor is us, we know (on some level) what our true intent is. It takes some digging but the truth is in there!

Words have surprisingly little play in communication.  Maybe only 10% of our communications is verbal. Thus, if we speak from love, love is comes across .If we speak from malice, “Icky” comes across.

Deepak Chopra writes  “intent has “infinite organizing power.”  I have seen it. If you look you will see it. Not easily, in a society where we have been taught to believe in randomness, duality and only the mechanistic “facts.” But the investigation is worth it.

There is no consensus on how strong emotions play out around us. Some say that all “reality”  is our thought. (I am not so sure about this.) But all manmade “stuff’ was once thought!  A car, a bridge, a computer– each was first a thought, then plans, then reality.

We now know that neuropeptides are a road between brain and body, carrying messengers to every cell. Candace Pert told us so in “Molecules of Emotion” in 1999. More recently, (2005) Bruce Lipton has demonstrated (in hard science) how thoughts cause proteins in our cells to change shape and change function,  like a computer chip turning on or off.

In biology,  we all know sunlight ends up as matter.  Emotionally, we can feel how a snotty remark can ruin our day. Have you kicked a tire or smashed a computer in frustration? Hardly logical, but common.  But our feelings actually  run us, even though we are just starting, as a society, to admit it.

Startlingly, if we observe closely enough, there can really be no question that intent– again, our true aim or purpose– has more impact on relationships than any other single factor, and yet it remains acknowledged except by a few on the “lunatic fringe.” Which is sad, because in each and every situation (no matter how the deck may be stacked against us) our intent is the one thing which first, last, and always, remains in our hands.  Caroline Myss states in “Anatomy of the Spirit: the Seven Stages of Power and Healing,” We do weave our spirits into the events and relationships of our lives.”  Intent is how we direct our spirit.

Directing intent  is simple–but not easy.  Take the statement  “the road to hell is paved with good intentions.” Huh?  If our intentions were “good” then we should be in OK, right? Alas, no. Post “good deed” hell may be how we feel watching the aftermath– of choices we made without being clear about the UNDERLYING aim or purpose of our acts.  Have you ever “meant well” and gotten clobbered?  I have. I have also learned that what I ended up with was based in large part on what my true intent was. The good news about the “hit” is if can be a “gift.” I learned what my unrecognized error was! Without the “hit” that recognition would not have taken place. With recognition, changes to lour “agenda” come as if by magic.

We all lie to ourselves because, sadly, we all feel “not good enough.” “The truth hurts” is true– but it is a sharp SHORT pain! Thus, we read, “strait is the gate and narrow is the way and few there be that find it.” (Matthew 7:13) and “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32) If we only knew the power of this deep truth! The gate to “freedom” and peace of mind lies where none of us has been trained to look– deep down, below the surface… it is… Truth!

Can we err and not be lying? Of course. But only once! “Meaning well” and creating pain (repeatedly) is common, but not “OK.”  One of my teachers said, “If you want to know what you’re committed to, look at your life.  Suffice it to say, the truth lies in the end result–our very own inner hell.

Divorce is both and end and a beginning, and the choices are many. Very few divorcing souses can say they got through it without being in  court hell, but it can be done. And if hell is already upon us– we can use that hell to burn away the underlying material that is no longer serving us.

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