Why do we behave as we do? Why do we think like we do? We are raised in cultures that have basic assumptions that we should behave in certain ways, think in certain ways, etc. and that we act as if these norms are ‘the way to be’. Common behavioral norms and memes guide how we act within our families, at work and in general society. Each area has its own norms. For example, in some cities, the norm for entering a bus or train is for people to stand in line and taking turns as we enter a bus quietly. In other cities, the norm is to start hustling and pushing to get in as soon as the bus/train arrives. These norms and expectations are often unconscious and come as a surprise to strangers. Even though surprised, a new resident soon adapts to the norm for that area. Yet we never think how these norms, expectations are programmed in us. Many of us don’t quite buy these directives, these norms and memes, but we don’t have an alternative, so we follow those norms as we search for our craved world.
Our thoughts are determined in the same way that the norms and memes were given to us. We didn’t choose the thought, or the expectation, we were given it. Our thoughts are not our thoughts, they are given us by our families, our religions and our societies. This kind of thinking we call ‘thunking’. Tantra Maat describes our predicament this way…
“We can compare having thoughts or ‘thunking’, to the analogy of the car. ‘Thunking’ is like turning on the key in the ignition and the engine doesn’t turn over. In the beginning, you know something is wrong, but after a while, when the engine doesn’t turn over anymore, you forget the car ever ran. You walk away and leave the car behind. You don’t even realize you’ve walked away. Without realizing it, you have left your mind behind.”
We are taught to give precedence to what others tell us is occurring outside of ourselves and inside of ourselves. We are taught to think of our own experiences as others tell us it should be described. We are taught to hold onto these ‘interpretations’ of an experience forever. A headache on the right side of your head always means the same thing, or a jittery stomach always means the same thing now, as it did when you were 9 years old. Stop for a minute. Does that make sense? Start thinking, not thunking.
We were given bodies that are paying attention to the whole environment in every moment. The communciation from that system is called Sentient Intelligence. We have cut ourselves off from this intelligence by all these thunkings that we have been given. It’s time to start listening to this physical intelligence which comes to us in sensations, sensitivities and imagination. We have already experienced it in nature, in the awe of a sunset, in the quiet of a forest walk, in the wonder we feel at the touch of a baby’s skin, of the first buds of spring. But that is not how we spend the majority of our time. We thunk thru our day. We don’t listen to our bodies with new perceptions of what is occurring in the moment.
To lower the stress in your life, pay attention to your Sentient Intelligence. To help you make the best decision for YOU, pay attention to your Sentient Intelligence. It helps you recognize reaction loops, and instead, choose response. As you start to learn this communication system, your creativity will increase. Your neuroplasticity will increase as you begin to think new thoughts, find new solutions. You will start looking for life-enhancing thoughts and turn off life-negating thoughts. You will begin to recognize the limitations of the world that you were born into. You will began to create a new reality to live in and thrive in that works for you in connection with others.
In the Institute, we unpack different words, phrases, concepts in order to know them differently than our society defines them. That means that we take it apart, we look at its meanings at different times, in different people. We offer our experiences until we all come to discover the broader meanings of that word or phrases that are life-enhancing for us. We come to a new comprehension of what that word/phrase is for us. We use discovery, exploration and comprehension to unpack a word. We are unpacking Sentient Intelligence on May 16th, 5:30pmPT. It’s a FREE 90 minute Zoom call. Register here.