Program For a Good Day

//##########################################
//Program for a good day
//version 1.0

//##########################################
//This function is called by the system whenever 
//self-awareness activates - its contents can be customized.
//If this function is not called frequently enough,
//run meditation routine
func selfAware()
{
	//this is a good opportunity to poll the emotional state
	currentMood = getCurrentMood()
	if(currentMood != pleasant)
		improveMood()
}

//##########################################
//activeThoughts is a system-populated array
//containing all thoughts currently in mind
func improveMood()
{
	foreach(thought in activeThoughts)
	{
		emotionalIntensity = getEmotionalIntensity(thought)
		isPleasant = determineDelightfulness(thought)
		
		if(emotionalIntensity > 0 && !isPleasant)
			defuseThought(thought)
	}
			
	generatePleasantThoughts()
}

//##########################################
func getCurrentMood()
{
	currentMood = null
	
	if(stressLevel == high)
		currentMood = unpleasant
	else if(aggravationLevel == high)
		currentMood = unpleasant
	else if(mouth != smiling || mouth != neutral)
		currentMood = unpleasant
	else if(posture != relaxed)
		currentMood = unpleasant
	else
		currentMood = pleasant
		
	return currentMood
}

//##########################################
func getEmotionalIntensity(thought)
{
	intensity = 0
	
	if(body == tense)
		intensity++
	
	if(gaze == focused)
		intensity++
		
	return intensity
}

//##########################################
func determineDelightfulness(thought)
{
	if(mind + thought == delight)
		return pleasant
	else
		return unpleasant		
}

//##########################################
func defuseThought(thought)
{
	isEasilyDismissed = dismissThought(thought)
	while(!isEasilyDismissed)
	{
		hasFlaw = findFlaw(thought)
		if(!hasFlaw)	
			imaginePositiveAlternative()
	}	
}

//##########################################
func generatePleasantThoughts()
{
	goodThoughtsArray = recallPastPleasantThoughts(5)
	foreach thought in goodThoughtsArray
	{
		visualizeThought(thought)
	}
}

//##########################################

Changing Perspective

There are many different perspectives from which we can interpret our existence. This has always been the case, as we can witness the differing interpretations throughout the historic narrative. We can also notice a lack of consistency throughout the various cultures that populate the planet at the same time. In other words, it’s a fallacy to assume that there’s a concrete indisputable interpretation of reality. It’s also a mistake to assume that humanity is progressing towards a clearer more accurate viewpoint of reality — people simply replace one hazy dream with another.

Additionally, the perspective we adopt significantly affects our personal satisfaction with life. For instance, I spent many decades cultivating the life-is-physical/random/evolved viewpoint, yet I found it unsatisfying. Not too long ago I dumped it in favor of a simulation-based viewpoint. And I must say, that change has done wonders for my happiness. For me, the circumstances of life are no longer random and chance-based, they’re planned in a benevolent way for my amusement. I have no fear on a path made just for me — I’m nurtured and protected along the way.

My anxiety went from high to low. I no longer experience life at high-intensity, it’s just a tour through the funhouse. I still get startled at times, but I know it’s all in good fun. Just imagine the entirety of people with wildly varying beliefs surviving all the same — how we define the basis of reality hasn’t mattered. Yet, it’s in our best interest to cultivate a viewpoint that elicits the most happiness. If we’re going to live out a life no matter what, we might as will be happy while doing so. And from experience, I can say that crafting a pleasant foundation for our perspective makes all the difference.

However, it’s not necessarily easy to flip from one viewpoint to another, it takes practice. For instance, I repeat these sentiments again and again, drilling them until they become my default. And, I practiced meditation for quite awhile until I had the awareness to catch and deflect all the undesirable thoughts streaming through my mind. We have to discover and refine a viewpoint, then keep our eyes pointed in that direction. An epiphany isn’t worth much without the follow-up — If we stare at obstacles, we’ll run right into them — Seek a satisfying perspective, then strive to maintain focus.

Wanting Lack

Dear Rich, if life is a virtual experience, why wouldn’t I simply wish everything I wanted into the world?

Let’s think about the game of Minecraft for a minute. If I’m in survival mode (with cheats enabled), I could use a slash-command to give myself 1000 blocks of iron and create all the iron tools I ever wanted — and while I’m at it, I might as well give myself 1000 blocks of wood planks. And you know what, instead of digging, I might as well use the fill command to excavate a huge cave for my new dwelling. Ooh, and I should give myself 1000 cakes too.

So in this scenario, I can type in a few commands and have everything at my finger tips. I probably wouldn’t bother to mine for resources or explore caves. This abundance might just rob me of a good time. Because, although we don’t think of it like this, we’re often entertained by limitations. Limits are what we go against whenever we challenge ourselves. Without finish-lines or structure, there’s no race to run, no feat to beat.

While it’s true that a virtual realm requires no true equilibrium, the players themselves require it. In other words, within a computer generated world, there is no real physical balance that must be maintained, yet participants must be provided fulfilling activities that evoke engagement. If everything is freely and easily obtained, activities might dissolve into pointlessness — and so, challenges and limitations are regularly introduced to stave-off boredom.

Therefore, it makes sense that a wizard-like being would purposely limit his power, preventing himself from magically fulfilling wishes. But, that’s only one side of the coin. In some scenarios, it does make sense to invoke near-limitless power. Let’s think about Minecraft again. If I’m in creative mode, where resources are unlimited, engagement through creativity can certainly serve as ample entertainment. The caveat being, that I must rely on my creativity to carry me through.

So dear reader, you should only wish into existence what you can handle. Lack is oftentimes captivating when we lack creativity.

Cheerful Choice

I choose to perceive existence as a benevolent experience.
I choose to envision a delightful path created just for me.
I choose to enjoy and appreciate this path I travel.
I choose to feel protected and nurtured along the way.
I choose to recognize resources as gifts given generously.
I choose to see life as a source of love and fulfillment.

Elevated Thought

Dear Rich, how can I tell if my thoughts are from the higher self or of the lower sort?

The devil deals in divisiveness whereas God works with oneness. Whatever separates into lesser, or judges by value, is base. Whereas whatever brings together, building bonds of unity, is exalted. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

Be careful not to categorize for the purpose of better-ness, for its fruit is bitterness. Work not to build barriers but to dismantle them. Thoughts that support this foundation of wholeness are the holy type we welcome — whereas thoughts that fractionalize and minimize, we must dismiss.

Doing good is doing as God. We must forgive as He forgives. Give to all as He gives to all. We are to be gracious and grateful guests at this gathering granted to all. We arrive late and empty-handed to a party in full-swing, the higher self shows appreciation for the invite and pitches in to make sure everyone is having a good time.

Return Trip

I’m back from my trip. About a month has passed. Our stays along the way down were pleasant and scenic — we primarily stayed by beaches overnight. What’s funny, is that I’m not sure why I even took this trip. Perhaps it’s to gain some perspective. In stories, characters are often developed through journeys. So perhaps me and my companions were due for some development.

I didn’t mind life on the road too much, although lengthy bouts within a compact car is a bit uncomfortable. It’s a little dull too, with pockets of civilization connected by lonely stretches of road. For various reasons, it’s difficult for me to consider commercial air travel as a viable means of transportation, so a car it was despite the discomfort. And it got hotter as we went, although after a long winter, the heat was not unwelcome.

When I leave New England I feel like a New Englander. When someone says “tree” I think maple not palm. When someone says “house” I think of a Cape Cod style in an ample yard. When someone says it’s hot, I think of 78F, not 96F. When entering other regions, the concentration of names change (people and stores) and things become slightly different yet not enough to be exotic.

What I imagine the point of the trip to be, is a demonstration of life’s goodness — and my acceptance of this fact — a reconciliation with life. Normally, I have an underlying feeling of imminent danger. It’s always been there yet nothing ever happens. I know someone that lacks this feeling and she’s much happier for it. My conclusion is that it’s a sensation that must be ignored.

It’s a bit of a burden to constantly ignore something so prevalent — yet much better than the alternative of bathing in anxiety. Remember though, boredom is our existential enemy, so we invite into our life whatever excites us. To leave anxiety behind, we need to embrace a new form of entertainment, engaging with life in an alternate way, lightheartedly.

That’s the secret to life you know: entertaining ourselves in a wholesome/nourishing way. It’s skipping the quick and easy scare, opting instead for activities that make us feel good about ourselves. We can chase boredom away in a few different ways, our job is to find and implement the most pleasing ways that align with our preferences.

I had no end-date set when I started the trip but I left when I felt like I was done. I experienced what I wanted and sensed it was time to go. Although, I think I stayed a little too long — but that’s good since it made me enthusiastic to get back on the road. I don’t feel particularly reconciled with life but I must admit that nothing horrible happened — the overall trip was pretty pleasant.

Yes there were some discomforts along the way but I should more likely blame myself for an eagerness to pick out what’s wrong with life. For me, this trip clearly serves as evidence of life’s benevolent nature. There were no dangers untold. Beauty abounded. There was childlike delight and fond remembrances of times not long ago.