I would like to say that writing today’s blog has been an odyssey of the mind, but actually it’s been more like a game of Hide-and-Seek.On Monday of this week, as I walked to the door of my client’s office, I was ruminating on a grandson who has made some spiritually disastrous choices lately, and I had an epiphany, during the which, I said to myself, “That’s just what Rene Allen was blogging about!”I got so excited about the prospect of writing about it for my turn today that I determined to spend the next morning’s used-to-be-seminary time in composition.
So, Tuesday morning at , I sat at my computer, fingers on the keyboard, ready to share my epiphany.Unfortunately, I hadn’t a clue what it was.I cudgeled my brain. I re-read Rene’s posting. I sat in a pose that I thought might approximate Rodin’s ‘Thinker’, but nothing availed. I remembered getting out of the car.I remembered walking down the hill to the office door.I remembered the thunderbolt of pure intelligence, but for the life of me, I couldn’t remember a speck of what that pure intelligence was.
I was on the verge of deciding to blog about the positive aspects of writing down your ideas as they come to you (and hanging on to the notebook), when it came back.My husband Derrill and I had a quick weekend getaway to a state park, and as we sat around the campfire talking last night, I remembered.
Here’s my epiphany:Rene Allen wrote, “The effectiveness of visualization and mental rehearsal is already accepted and used in activities such as athletics where performance is important. This new information expands that knowledge. I find it exciting because I believe that anything that empowers a person to be in charge of his or her life, to exercise agency and enjoy the thrill of self-efficacy, which does not compromise this agency through ill-effects such as drug dependency, is good.”Rene was talking about positive things in our lives, positive choices we make.But I think the effectiveness of visualization and mental rehearsal can also, does also, work when we choose degrading things.The choices my grandson made were not on-the-spot or spur-of-the-moment.Against counsel, he had put himself in situations where he was given the tools to visualize, to mentally rehearse the things he put into action and which resulted in a very theatrical parting from his family.
My epiphany was to realize the truth to the axiom, “The thought is father to the act.”For good or for bad, this is so.If we think good, positive, Christian thoughts, and seek out the virtuous, the lovely, and things of good report, we will tend to act as good, positive Christians.But if we think mean, destructive, lewd and salacious thoughts, seeking out things that feed our basic instincts, then our actions will be mean, destructive, lewd and salacious.Maybe not right away, but soon.
This situation will have a happier next act, I think, for this young man is a very family oriented fellow and is learning about consequences.He is not being shunned, but his own actions have put him in a situation very alien to our family, and, as he says, he spends a lot of time walking and thinking. He is also finding out that wickedness never was happiness—a verse he memorized when I taught him in seminary.That was the classroom.This is the lab.
So that’s it.My forgotten epiphany.My quest for an elusive thought.Remembering it was almost as strong an experience as the first dawning.Thank you, Rene, for a provocative article.I hope what it provoked sticks this time.