Take Charge of Your Attention
Last week, we explored how consciously placing our attention helps us to develop the ability to choose how we engage with the world in general. This is a vital skill to hone for anyone who spends time on social media, watches Netflix or keeps up to date with the news.
Your Attention is a Resource
Media and entertainment organisations view our attention as a resource to be harnessed and, where possible, mined. There is a saying: “if you are not paying for the product, you are the product.” In other words, your data will be sold in huge data sets that are used to steer populations towards making certain choices. These might be choices of what to buy, who to vote for, what to believe, what to think.
It is now well documented that the campaigns for Brexit, Trump and Boris all involved using big data at a huge scale to steer people to vote in uncharacteristic ways. For detail on how they pulled this off, I highly recommend Mindfuck by Christopher Wiley, the Cambridge Analytica whistleblower. It’s essential reading for these times, both enlightening and highly entertaining.
The Havoc Created by Big Data
This manipulative use of our data causes havoc in our political and societal landscapes. In addition, manipulative algorithms affect us at a personal energetic level, due to the effect on our delicate brain chemistry and finely tuned nervous systems. When we are exposed to information that feels threatening to our life or way of life, we go into fight or flight. This is exhausting and prevents us from deeply resting and relaxing. Our physical and mental energy gets drained from being in this state for too long. Our spirit gets dejected when our attention constantly deviates from the people and projects that mean a lot to us.
Energy Follows Attention
The Taoists have a great saying, that I quote a lot in class:
Chi follows Yi
Which may be translated as “Energy follows Attention or “where you attention goes, your energy flows.”
Mindfulness and Freedom
A great way of working with attention is to be mindful. In essence, this is paying attention to the present moment, on purpose, without judgement. This special type of awareness can be very supportive to our body, mind and spirit. Mindfulness helps us to learn to pay attention to how our body, breath, heart and mind respond to our activities and surroundings. This gives us more discernment and freedom to decide what feels truly supportive and nourishing in the present moment. In this way, we learn to protect and nurture our energy.
Having this kind of mindfulness around the consumption of media is well worth it. When we tend to and balance our own energies, we can feed into the fields of energy around us in a more positive way. Doing a simple breath practice, such as extending the exhalation, helps to regulate our nervous system. When our nervous systems are in the sweet spot of relaxed, social engagement, we are able to contribute positively to the atmosphere of our homes, workplaces and communities.
The Human Biofield
Fields of energy will tend towards the harmonisation of their frequencies or waveforms. Our hearts and brains both form electromagnetic fields. These are measured by doctors using electrocardiography (ECG) and electroencephalography (EEG). When we are consciously working to calm our systems and move towards social engagement we create a state that is called “coherence” in our breath, heart and nervous system.
Research has shown that if we consciously create this coherence, we are able to influence the ECG patterns of people within our vicinity. We instinctively know this we affect and are affected by the fields of energy around us. In calm environments, we feel calmer. When people are stressed, we pick up on and often get affected by the stress of other people. These effects can also be attributed to cells that mimic the feelings and moods of people around us called mirror neurones. Yet, it is becoming more plausible to suggest that there is a resonance effect, not only between human biofields (panchamayakosha) but also within the field of energy of the whole space (prakriti).
The Science of Synching Up
This is now starting to be recognised by scientists
All things in our universe are constantly in motion, vibrating. Even objects that appear to be stationary are in fact vibrating, oscillating, resonating, at various frequencies. Resonance is a type of motion, characterised by oscillation between two states. And ultimately all matter is just vibrations of various underlying fields.
An interesting phenomenon occurs when different vibrating things/processes come into proximity: they will often start, after a little time, to vibrate together at the same frequency. They “sync up,” sometimes in ways that can seem mysterious. This is described today as the phenomenon of spontaneous self-organisation.
Examining this phenomenon leads to potentially deep insights about the nature of consciousness and about the universe more generally.
The Hippies Were Right: It’s All about Vibrations, Man! A new theory of consciousness
By Tam Hunt in Scientific American, December 5, 2018
Creating Global Coherence
So next time you are practising yoga or meditation, consider that your efforts can have wide-ranging effects, beyond benefiting your own being. As you go about your day, contemplate the effect that your nervous system has, as it interacts with the fields of energy around you.
By attending a gentle yoga class, or taking some time out of a busy day to focus on your breath or deeply relax you are contributing to the overall balance of the field (prakriti or maya) around you. Far from being simply self-care, yoga and meditation may be regarded as community care. The repercussions of balancing your own nervous system have a resonant effect beyond your own mind, body and spirit (panchamayakosha).
Imagine if we harness these effects at scale!
I wonder, if more people were creating coherence in their own field of energy, what positive effects we could have on the wider fields of energy of our planet as a whole?