The brain is the physical collection of cells combined into the body’s computer. The mind is the personality that thinks and feels, the intangible thinking part that constitutes “you.” The brain is the portion where the fusion of both physical and metaphysical takes place. An affect on the metaphysical can directly equate to a change on the physical being. An affect on the physical can have a direct change on the metaphysical person. We as humans share a common thread among life forms and that is the fact that we are conscious. We think and comprehend unless we happen to be politicians. Concentrating on humans, the biochemical processes that regulate our bodies are in delicate arrangements and when a sabot (French: çabot or wooden shoe) is thrown into the system, functions will become erratic and altered from the norm.
Some methods for achieving these altered states of consciousness are hypnosis, meditation/prayer, biofeedback and drugs. Hypnosis is a “setting” or “mode” that a conscious mind can be manipulated into causing a waking-dreamlike state where the brain is more open to suggestion to the subconscious mind. Hypnosis is a treatment used in conjunction with other forms of therapy and not to be considered a ” be all, end all ” solution to life’s problems. A person who makes the decision to have hypnosis performed as a tool must be prepared for and open to suggestion. He or she must also be a willing participant and play a “hypnotic roll” for the full positive effects to be attained. Some hypnosis can be used for the retrieval of boxed up memories. The things that a person did not want to deal with at the time can be repressed and put away for processing later. Oddly enough, many people rarely want to open those memories after having had them stored in the recesses of their minds.
The ‘monsters’ growing inside these containers can begin to scratch and claw at the doors of the hidden rooms from whence they were locked. They can begin to affect the individual from deep within over a period of time. Hypnosis and the proper hypnotist /counselor can assist with putting these monsters on a leash and letting them out one at a time so a patient does not become overwhelmed. The act or art of meditation has many categories and covers a broad spectrum. There are transcendental, mindfulness and guided meditation to name three. Meditation aids in the achievement of spiritual goals that cannot usually be attained during the normal conscious daytime activities. The way that the mind can settle and focus on relaxation both physically and mentally can have influential effects that are observable.
Some effects are of a spiritual nature and others are reflected in bodily health. Meditation can be more effective than pharmaceutical assistance proven by various studies. Some meditation is conducted by directing certain body parts to relax in a certain order. This can eventually result in attaining a very calm mental and physical state. Other forms are directed at suspending worrisome thoughts and feelings allowing the problems of the day to slip away. Everyone is different and these differences lead to different treatments for various ailments. What works for one may not work for another and in some cases, all that is needed for a solution is a placebo.
The belief that a treatment will work is enough to do the trick. Belief is a powerful thing and should not be taken lightly. Biofeedback is the control the body can learn to have over some key functions such as heart rate and sexual desire or gratification fulfillment. Bodies can be trained through manipulation, and a series of reinforcements, to achieve a desired outcome. In the same way that we learn as children to stay away from hot things, many times we were burned in order to learn the lesson.
A consistent regimen of positive or negative reinforcements can evoke certain actions or outcomes. Sometimes people will, when on the journey of life, attempt to take shortcuts. Some of these paths lead to enlightenment while others lead to much darker places. Not all drug use is bad and not all problems can be solved with a pill. However, some humans are not in places physically or emotionally that are conducive to reaching their perceived goals. At times, a mood-altering drug can have very beneficial effects. Psychoactive substances can open doors that, through meditation, would take a lifetime to open.