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Your Six Powerful Mental Faculties


There are six mental faculties that we have, and how we use them sets the course
for our life. Bob Proctor

You can think of this post as outlining a workout at the gym for your mind. Its like
the different muscle groups in your body they all have different functions, but
work together for your health. The difference is that most people cant even define
their mental faculties, much less know how to use or develop them. This post should

As our quote from Bob says, using these powers correctly is the difference between
having the life we want, or not. So lets study them carefully. Five of the six faculties
have different functions in the conscious and subconscious mind, so well start with
the only one that doesnt the power of will!

Will is a conscious mind function that we use to focus our attention. Many people
have trouble because they cant stay focused, and they bounce around from one
thing to another, and never finish anything. Are you easily distracted? Then utilize
your will.

You may not be aware of how hard it is to stay focused, but theres a simple way to
find out. Try a short meditation exercise in which you focus your attention on a
candle flame or a pool of water. Get relaxed and see how long you can do it without
your mind wandering.

The experienced meditators in our group are laughing already. They know only too
well what happens. You have 5 or 10 seconds of focus and the next thing you know
youre wondering whats for dinner. You can see it in your life, too, once you know
where to look. Keep track of your attention on the next project you have and see
how you do.

Will, like all the powers, can be built up by exercise. Meditation is a very good
practice to build your power of focus. If youre unsure about how to learn that,
theres lot of info online. Theres even a Meditation for Dummies book, which, like
most of the books in that series, is actually written by an expert and is quite good.

During your day you can become aware of where your focus is. You use will to
choose what to focus on, and you use will to keep it there. The better you get at it,
the more youll get done. Its well worth the effort. Lack of focus ruins productivity,
and success in anything depends on productivity, so the proper use of will can mean
a lot.

Nothings either good or bad but thinking makes it so. Shakespeare

The next mental faculty to understand is the very important power of perception.
Perception controls what we become aware of in our

environment, and how we choose to see it. Perception has both conscious and
subconscious mind functions

In the conscious mind we have choice. We can look at any person or situation and
decide how we want to see it good or bad, positive or negative. Obviously the
choice we make has a big influence on how we respond and how we feel about it.
And Shakespeare was right our thinking makes it so.

Bob Proctor likes to refer to what he calls the Law of Polarity, which he illustrates by
showing the duality in most everything front/back, up/down, in/out, and especially
good/bad. And thats the choice we exercise with conscious perception to see the
good or the bad in everything, because everything has both.

I sometimes have people argue with me on this, and theyll call up some tragedy
and demand to know how that was good. I point out that the good is not always in
the thing itself, but what comes from it. I use the example of a case where a young
girl was killed by a drunken driver. Not good, in itself, at all. But out of her mothers
anguish and determination to save others, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)
was formed, and they have saved many lives.

So we always have the choice of what to focus on. So choose wisely.

The subconscious function is one most people are completely unaware of. In the
subconscious mind, perception determines what we become aware of. Were flooded
with billions of bits of information every second, and we can only process a tiny
fraction of them. So what determines what gets through?

There are two main criteria what agrees with our beliefs, and what our mind
believes is important to us. Thats all! Were more or less blind to everything else.
Thats why most of us firmly believe that our beliefs are true were blind to
contradictory evidence.

Thats also why two people can have such different experiences of the same event.
Were all running the inputs through different filters and so what we perceive is
different. You know the new car story. You decide you want a particular car and
suddenly you see them everywhere. They were always there, but your filter didnt
know they were important, so you were never aware of them.

Thats why having clear goals, using affirmations, writing gratitude lists

and things like that are so important, because they are programming your mind that
those things are important to you! Do you get it? If you dont program your mind,
what you need can be right in front of you and you wont see it!

So write your goals out, read them every day, use positive affirmations, do your
gratitude lists. What you focus on, youll get more of, and now you know why.
Because youll see it! Thats the power of perception. Put it to work for you.

Everyone has a photographic memory. Some people just dont have any film.

Did you ever feel like our quote says out of film? Lets see if we can figure out
what to do. As youve probably guessed, our third mental faculty is memory. Like
perception, memory has a conscious and subconscious aspect.
When we get new inputs of information, they get processed by the short term
memory of the conscious mind, and while theyre there, theyre easy to remember.
Unfortunately, new information only stays in the conscious mind for about 20
seconds just long enough for us to decide what to do about it. If we dont convince
the mind to save it in some way, after 20 seconds its gone! What was that guys

Two primary tests determine what goes into long term memory in the

subconscious. First very strong emotion, either good or bad! You likely still
remember a few things from your childhood, and every one

has some strong emotion attached to it.

I can still clearly remember being transferred and walking into a new 2nd grade
classroom in the middle of the school year and all the strange kids staring at me.
My little 6 year old self wanted to curl up and die! Still clear, after all these years,
because of the strong emotion.

Many events with strong emotions pass from conscious memory but may still be
there in the subconscious. They can be the source of belief systems that control us
unconsciously. Every event like that contributed to our developing view of ourselves
and the world around us, and is probably limiting us in some way. So its worthwhile
to take a look at them from that perspective.

The other test for storing information in memory is our whats important filter that
we talked about in the section on perception. Things that weve trained the mind to
know as important tend to stick much better in long term memory. Thats yet
another reason to do written goals, affirmations and gratitude lists as I said before.
Were not only telling our mind what to notice, were telling it what to remember!

Almost all the memory training courses use some system for making names or
information important or memorable to get the mind to keep it accessible. By being
clear about what you want, you can use these same tricks to remember what you
need to know. You have the power to remember everything that you need to
remember, if you know how the mind works and train it effectively.
You do have a photographic memory, if you dont run out of film! When you train
your mind properly, you wont.

It is a lesson which all history teaches wise persons, to put trust in ideas, and not in
circumstances. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Our next topic is about the mental faculty of reason and how to get the best use out
of it. Reason is a small part of our mind but its the part were most aware of and its
what we usually mean when we say that were thinking. Neuroscience has shown
that the conscious mind only uses about 5% of the brain, and some important parts
of it dont develop until were in our early 20s. Thats why teenagers do dumb
things one of the last parts to develop has to do with understanding the
consequences of choices!

Our faculty of reason works primarily in the conscious mind and its job is to analyze,
compare, and evaluate ideas. Its the primary way we choose and we use it in every
choice we make. However, it also has one other really important capability it can
take all the information it has and stir it up and come up with brand new ideas!

Thats important because as Emerson says in our quote, one good idea will beat
your circumstances every time! Thats your real spiritual power in life. Youre not
limited by whats gone before, you can create something new. You always have
choice, and the power of reason to help you choose wisely.

Your subconscious mind cannot originate ideas, it can only take ideas passed to it
from the conscious mind and decide how to apply them. If its a big new idea that
disrupts the balance between your beliefs and life experience, the subconscious
may object by making you uncomfortable. But if you persist, it HAS to move into
action with your new idea.

The history of the human race is the story of people with new ideas. Your life is the
record of how well you have worked with new ideas, or not. Every person you
admire got to where they are by embracing a new idea and the discomfort that goes
with putting it into action.
If you have an idea that your reason faculty says, Hey, that looks good! but it
makes you uncomfortable, thats a good sign! Its just your subconscious objecting
to change. The bigger the new idea, the more the discomfort. Go right ahead with
that new idea. Youll get used to it.

Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities.

Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning. Lucius Annaeus Seneca

Our next faculty for study is one that we use naturally as children, but we get it
trained out of us sometimes by well meaning adults. That is the faculty of
imagination. We get told to quit day dreaming when were kids, and then we have to
learn it all over again as adults.

Imagination is the way that we can test and experience our future and

our dreams. But you may not know the astounding discovery of modern science
about imagination. When we vividly imagine something with emotional intensity in
our conscious mind, we impress it on the subconscious mind and produce the same
emotional and biochemical reactions in our body as the actual experience!

Thats why almost every Olympic athlete uses imagination in their training program.
They know that when they visualize, they are getting virtually the same benefits as
actually training, and by visualizing they are doing every routine perfectly!

James Nesmith was a US pilot who became a prisoner of war in Vietnam. Only an
average golfer, he played detailed rounds of golf in his mind while imprisoned in a
wire cage! Every day he chose a golf course, decided what the weather and wind
would be, visualized every detail. If he visualized hitting the ball 200 yards, he took
200 steps in his mind to get to it for the next shot.

After he was freed, and got out of the hospital, he played his first real round of golf
in a long time and beat his previous average score by almost 20 strokes!

Thats the power of imagination, used correctly. The sensory detail is very
important. But remember, whenever you are imagining something, good or bad,
that power is at work. Dont imagine what you dont want. As the old Roman,
Seneca, said in our quote, dreaming is a form of planning. Used correctly to
visualize what you want, its one of the most powerful tools you have to create your
dreams. It trains your mind in what to notice and what to remember, and its free!
So put it to work.

What I am actually saying is that we need to be willing to let our intuition guide us,
and then be willing to follow that guidance directly and fearlessly. Shakti Gawain

Now we cover the sixth and last of our mental faculties the power of intuition. And
its very powerful, and very important. I know, some people say that men dont
have intuition, they have hunches! But I dont care what you call it, we all have it,
and it works through both the conscious and subconscious mind.

Remember that the conscious mind is verbal and the subconscious mind is
emotional which means it works with feelings instead of ideas. You know, the gut
feeling that you sometimes have. So when your conscious mind intuits something,
youll get an idea, something that you can verbalize. Your subconscious will give you
a feeling about whether something is right or wrong.

Where does this information come from? Many people call it a spiritual power
because it works on information you dont consciously have. I prefer calling it a
metaphysical power, which just means beyond the physical and takes some of the
woo-woo feeling out of it.

The leading edge topic in modern science today, as Ive written before, is that the
fundamental substance of the Universe is consciousness. We are each individual
expressions of that consciousness. Intuition is our connection to the Mother Ship of
consciousness, which pretty much knows everything. Some people call it God. You
can if youd like. But its not woo-woo, its science.

What really matters is not what you call it, but learning to pay attention to it. For
those people whove ignored the whispers for many years, its hard to hear intuition.
With practice its voice gets louder and clearer. Its worth the effort to ask and to
Will, perception, memory, reason, imagination and intuition. These are our mental
faculties, and we humans are the only species on this planet that have them all.
With them you can build the life of your dreams, or of your nightmares. So use them