What do you mean, "All Events are Neutral"???!!!
Updated: Apr 11
Blog Post 4-9-2021
In the work we do in Mindshifters Support Groups, and on Mindshifters Radio podcast, our main focus is on observing how we create our emotions and our responses to the events that unfold in our world. The goal is for me to be able to accept 100% responsibility for the emotions and reactions I create. Part of the observation in this process is to realize the Truth taught in most spiritual and philosophic traditions, “All events are neutral.” Shakespeare has Hamlet say: “Why, then, 'tis none to you, for there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”. Also, The Way of Mastery – The Way of The Heart Lesson 9 is titled, “All Events Are Neutral”.
I found myself on the podcast the other day saying, “You will never walk into the forest and walk right into a cloud of fear, the way you can walk into a “cloud” of gnats, a “cloud” of mosquitos, or a fog bank. This is because fear does not exist outside of the human mind that creates it. The human who walks into the forest, or wherever, brings the fear-creating device with them into that situation.” That fear-creating device is the conscious, “rational”, “logical” mind. That part of our mind does what David Bohm called “sustained incoherence” by creating our negative emotional states, then blaming them on something outside itself, and then deciding to think its way to a solution, with the very process that created the problem.
Byron Katie in her work and her books talks about how it is possible to look at everything that happens as though it is “perfect” just the way it is. How can you know this? Because it happened. There is no going back into the past to change what happened, and so when I argue with it, when I say it shouldn’t have happened, when I label it “bad” or “tragic”, I am creating more pain for myself, and I am focusing on things I cannot control. Michael Singer teaches us that the physical universe as we experience it has been moving through the creative process – according to the best estimates from our scientists – for 13.8 billion years. Every atom, molecule, organism, structure, person you ever have contact with is the result of the process of creation unfolding since “The Big Bang” 13.8 billion years ago. Everything is unfolding in that creative process, and when a human mind decides to label that process or its results as “bad”, “wrong”, or “tragic” that takes a special kind of arrogance. It also guarantees additional pain and frustration, since the human mind is not going to be able to undo what creation has done.
Here are some of the comments and arguments we often hear when this topic comes up:
"So then, what are we to do, sit back and just do nothing?"
"Should we just allow all things we see unfold and never take a corrective action?"
"If “All Events Are Neutral” why would we do anything to change anything? "
"What is the point of life if we just sit back and watch and never make a judgement or try to take a corrective action?"
"This philosophy would lead to destruction of society as we know it and even greater pain and suffering."
I have heard each of these reactions and many more. The point of this teaching, “All events are neutral.” Is to recognize that the external events on our lives do not create our emotions and they do not create our experience of life. Our experience of life IS created by the way we choose to interpret and then react to the events in our lives. The Truth of this is there to be observed, and yet most of us have been taught the opposite. Most of us have been taught that events are tragic, and that what someone else just said is “offensive”, or “insulting”, or “hurtful”. The Truth is that words only have the meanings we give them, and if we choose a neutral interpretation of the events which unfold, or the words that are spoken to us, we create a neutral impact. When we choose a negative interpretation, we create a negative impact. Because we are taught the opposite of this we tend to create perceptions which “prove” to us that the outside events and actions of others are what creates our emotions and our experience.
The Truth, which can be observed, is that we are participating in the creation of our experience of life and each of the emotions we feel. When we participate by interpreting the situation negatively and then add a negative emotional energy or defensiveness to the interaction, we make it more intensely negative for ourselves. When we interpret the situation in a neutral or positive way, we will add a positive or constructive energy to the situation and create a more positive experience for ourselves.
One of the Bottom-Line Observations I teach in my therapy work is “If I have a negative thought about myself of someone else, or a negative emotion active in my awareness I can instantly Know three things. 1. This thought, or emotion is a lie or based on a falsehood. 2. This thought, or emotion is an old tape playing – it is not about the current situation. 3. If I act from this negative thought or negative emotion, I will simply make my current situation and experience worse. I cannot hope to improve a situation by adding a negative emotional energy to it.
So, I invite everyone to experiment with this for yourself. Rather than engage in a philosophic argument, or even a protracted discussion about whether something is “bad”, “wrong”, “tragic”, etc. simply choose to dismantle the negative emotions, tension, or judgement you are creating “about” that situation. (We teach, For FREE, a host of tools for doing just that on Mindshifters Radio podcast) Then when you have restored a state of calm to your mind, you may choose to ask, “What is mine to do here?”, or “How can I assist in this situation?”, or “How can I bless myself or someone else in this moment?”. My experience has been that this process has dramatically improved my experience of life, and resulted in my spending only a tiny fraction of my time in negative emotional states, compared to what I experienced before learning this work and applying this process.
We Come From Love. We Are Made Of Love. We Are Love! Everything else is false.