Pollute Our Thoughts, Pollute the World

The other day I was flipping through an astrological report personalized to my birth sign, and in the health and fitness section it suggested I read a book by Dr. Masaru Emoto titled The Hidden Messages in Water. Emoto, in a nutshell, is an author and entrepreneur who believes that the human consciousness has an effect on the molecular structure of water.


Conversations with friends and co-workers about the theory, after finishing up the book, ranged from complete dismissal and hilarity to minor intrigue and curiosity. I must say there are details in the piece that I can’t attach myself to entirely either, but all in all, the ideas he presents strike a chord in me for the greater philosophical messages they carry.


This is because Emoto’s theory hits the nail on the head of what most Buddhist leaders and authors I follow always speak of, and that is how what we think and how we treat ourselves will manifest into what the world gives us.


In short, what we put out into the world is what we will receive, for better or for worse.


The scientific finding behind Emoto’s claim is that positive messages, words (such as “love” and “gratitude”), and music, as well as blessings and prayers, create more beautiful, vibrant, and intricate ice crystal formations, whereas negative messages or exposures (such as the phrase “You fool” or heavy metal music) generate dull, listless formations.


He compared this discovery to the ice crystals found when looking at natural, spring water, whose formations matched those exposed to positive messages, and distilled water, as well as polluted water, whose makeup matched that exposed to negative messages.


Science aside, the implication I interpreted is this: just like our mindless, reckless actions cause pollution of the environment, our damaging, unconstructive thoughts pollute our minds and consequently, pollute the world.


No, I can’t exactly wrap my head around the actual scientific findings, but after tossing the message around in my brain, I began to think about the larger picture, and it gave me a way to view the karmic aspect of our thoughts and actions.


We, as humans, are the ones who create the universe and allow it to be in whatever condition it is. If we are constantly belittling ourselves for not being good enough, then that is how others will treat us. If we are always harping on our hearts for always being trampled on, then those experiences will continue. If we relentlessly believe everyone is innately evil or contemptible, then those are the people to whom we will recurrently be exposed.


This phenomenon has most definitely played itself out in my own life.


For example, I’ve always been lacking in self-confidence. I never thought I deserved love, and I allowed myself to be a doormat for others to stomp on in order to make themselves feel better. I was denying my own value, and as a result, the treatment I was receiving was not the most affirmative or courteous.


It wasn’t until I reached my breaking point and fell flat on my face that I chose to put myself and my health (sanity included) first and live my life fully. I started doing the dirty work, cleaning out the polluted spaces in my mind and substituting the contamination with less soiled and more pure elements.

In order to do this, I had to learn to be kind, not just to others, but to my own heart. Like Shambhala Buddhist nun Pema Chödrön says, “Staying in pain without loving-kindness is just warfare.”

Realizing I had been declaring war on my own soul for years, I had to see and do things differently.

I began to use my yoga practice as a means of reflection and healing, and whenever self-deprecating thoughts popped into my brain, I observed them and how they felt in my body. I then allowed them to tenderly dissipate as opposed to hating myself for having them and clinging to them for dear life.

Treating myself in the positive manner in which I would treat others naturally created the opposite, yet complementary, spectacle — people, and the world, began to interact with me in a much more honest, gentle, and progressive way.

Supportive and similar folks were sprouting up from all sorts of places in my life, and my relationships with them, as well as my old ones, began to change for the better.

So with this, Emoto’s claims are pretty obvious. If we radiate positivity and kindness to all beings, ourselves and the environment included, then the world will start to experience more of those encouraging sentiments, and this planet would be a much more habitable and peaceful one.

But it all starts within our own minds and with our treatment of ourselves.

We must break down the barriers we erect that we use as a defense mechanism, and we must begin to clean up the mess, shake off the dust (I stole that mantra from a yoga teacher), and nurture the tainted parts of our souls that we’ve probably neglected for longer than we’d like to admit.

Peace comes from within, and until we remember that and act to implement it, the world will continue to suffer. But I believe we can all do it, and I believe that through gentleness and honesty, we can soon see beautiful, intricate formations deep inside the structure of our society.

This piece was originally published on Elephant Journal.


Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 2:17pm
Change your thoughts change your world.
Gigo. Garbage in, Garbage out.
Thoughts that are not pure, corrupt us.
Janie Smith Added Feb 16, 2017 - 2:34pm
Mostly, I stay away from metaphysical, esoteric mumbo jumbo...But...I will say this, there is a very obvious and measurable interdependence of ALL things, the easiest way to see this and understand the power of this dynamic is to watch a timelapse video of the rainforest...everything works in an amazing cycle of continuous support of that ecosystem.  The earth, humanity, the universe, and whatever exist beyond...all one amazing and massive ecosystem...everything dependant. 
Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 2:41pm
Psychiatry, and eastern philosophy is a bunch of hocus pocus that appeals to the historically and morally ignorant, agree, Janie!
I do agree with the circle of life, and as we grow purer, our vision of God's grand design increases.
wsucram15 Added Feb 16, 2017 - 2:50pm
Its always easy to dismiss what you dont understand or disagree with.  But I will say that there is quite a bit to eastern philosophy. But Ryan we had a discussion once about Ghandi and a quote you used of his..this is eastern philosophy..yes?    Similar to what you said in the first comment above.. but its "hocus pocus"?
Respect Ryan...
Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 2:56pm
I quote Gandhi, Confucius, Lao Tzu, and I just quoted Buddha in my first sentence above.  Every man is born with God's truth on his heart, but not every man has the entire truth.  Every man has many shards.  Few have it all.
Janie Smith Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:00pm
So true, Ryan. 
Jeff Michka Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:04pm
Ah, Ryan is back, booted off FB for breaking their TOS. We must break down the barriers we erect that we use as a defense mechanism, and we must begin to clean up the mess, shake off the dust - Chelsey notes, so perhaps you should take some advice.  It was real pleasant not seeing your Xtain dogma.  Gee, maybe you'll engage Dr. Farooq again and actually answer his questions, instead of leaving Dawn to deal with your "religious confrontation."
Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:05pm
Ah Jeff, as deluded as ever.  So sad to see a mind as badly misguided as yours.  May God comfort you in your addled misapprehensions.
Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:07pm
Dr. Farooq has all the answers he wants. He was brainwashed by Islam, you were brainwashed by your corruption and liberals.  
Islam is a death cult and Muhammad was a pedophile butcher profit. 
Janie Smith Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:16pm
Paste "fight cloud" here
Jeff Michka Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:29pm
Janie Smith tries to impune: Paste "fight cloud" here.  Why?  Will Ryan change his views, or will I become and intolerant Xtain?
Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:37pm
You can keep banging your head against the truth all you like Jeff.  History is full of failures, and you won't be the last one.
Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:39pm
Obstreperous, bullheaded, stubborn, instransigent.  All characteristics of the fool.  
The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.
Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 3:39pm
Ryan Messano Added Feb 16, 2017 - 9:25pm
Self love starts with self discipline, and liberals never have the latter, so they are always in pursuit of the former.  
Mircea Negres Added Feb 18, 2017 - 6:42am
I see we have another one of those writers of the "pull pin, throw grenade and RUN!" type. My dear Chelsey, if you hold a glass of water on your palm, you'll see the surface ripple. That comes from your heartbeat and blood flow. That's just easily noticeable by a human being. The thing less noticeable is how a human heart can move an 18 wheeler truck, because then you're going to need a special detector sensitive enough to detect it, something U.S. Customs have to detect illegal immigrants. Either way, you have vibrations, and even setting ice will be subject to them, and that's besides the human body's electrical field, which will have an effect too. Yeah, there's a difference in complexity and harmony of ice flakes formed under conditions you have described, and that's a fact.
However, you might want to read on about the horoscope business... Back during the Cold War, a spook (American or British) wanted to recruit a Soviet woman working with some interesting information. Everything the guy tried to snag her failed, until he realized this woman was big on reading the horoscope in the newspaper. The spook paid the writer off to put under the woman's star sign "soon somebody will approach you with an offer. You should accept it", and made his pitch the next day- yup, the woman took up the offer to become a spy. Be careful in what and whom you put your faith, or it will come back to bite you someplace where it's going to hurt...