Posted on Feb 2nd, 2006

"If you have ever been in a life-or-death emergency situation, you will know it wasn’t a problem. The mind didn’t have time to fool around and make it a problem. In a true emergency, the mind stops; you become totally present in the Now, and something infinitely more powerful takes over."

Eckhart Tolle in THE POWER OF NOW

I looked above my head to see why my fall to earth wasn’t being slowed. Above me was a malfunctioned parachute in what had been described to me in class as a “Mae West” where one of the lines had draped itself over the fabric keeping it from opening properly.

I glanced down to the ground to estimate my distance from earth and the amount of time I had left in my life, then gazed back up to the parachute to see if the malfunction had cleared itself yet, as instructed in class. The cord continued to choke off the fabric. I repeated the exercise once more, confirmed that indeed the malfunction was not clearing. I then reached down to my back-up chute attached to my front and with one hand pulled the cord that would free it, while clutching the ball of fabric that was my last chance for survival. I would need to throw the secondary chute away from me to minimize the chance of it becoming fouled in the “Mae West.” I glanced up one last time and watched as the line slipped from around the fabric, freeing it to open like a real parachute. I breathed for the first time since leaving the airplane.

My one episode of a malfunctioning parachute happened over 20 years ago, but it confirmed to me what Tolle wrote about our mischievous mind. My mind didn’t have time to create the malfunction as a problem. It was simply a life situation that needed to be dealt with as effectively as possible. Luckily, I had had a very competent instructor, my older brother Dale. It wasn’t until I was walking back to the hanger that my knees began to buckle. "I could have been killed," I heard my mind tell me. Then and only then had the malfunction appeared to me as a problem.

We can use our mind as either an artist tool with which to help create a masterpiece of our life or as a lethal weapon we use to kill off life, ours and others. A key first step to using the mind as an artist tool rather than a lethal weapon is to disassociate ourselves from our mind; to recognize that we have a mind but we aren’t our mind or the thoughts that it generates. From that position we can then choose which thoughts to hold onto and which thoughts to observe and let go of.

Using the tools and techniques of the Life On Purpose Process for the past 10 years has helped me get pretty good at making the ‘right’ choice by choosing to hold onto and empower thoughts that are consistent with my life purpose, and to release thoughts stemming from the fear, lack, struggling that make it based on Inherited Purpose.

How about you? Are you allowing your mind to create life draining problems or beautiful life enhancing possibilities?

©2005 Brad Swift of Life On Purpose Institute, Inc. This article can be reprinted freely online, as long as the entire article and this resource box are included.

Dr. Brad Swift founded Life On Purpose Institute in 1996 with the vision of creating a World On Purpose by assisting people like yourself to clarify their life purpose & live true to it. Determine how on or off purpose your life is with the fun & insightful Self Test at: http://lifeonpurpose.com/_forms/self-test.php?source=ezart Inspire yourself with a fr.ee subscription to Purposeful Pondering Ezine: http://lifeonpurpose.com/index.php?dir=_ezines&task=view-ezines

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