Sunday, February 26, 2017

The Mental Power Of Prayer

You can reshape the pathways of your brain through deliberate thought. It can be for good or ill. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) seeks to change you for the better.
CBT aims to help people become aware of when they make negative interpretations, and of behavioral patterns which reinforce the distorted thinking. Cognitive therapy helps people to develop alternative ways of thinking and behaving which aims to reduce their psychological distress.
Porn seeks to change you for the worse.
Once the reward centre is altered, a person will compulsively seek out the activity or place that triggered the dopamine discharge. (Like addicts who get excited passing the alley where they first tried cocaine, the patients got excited thinking about their computers.) They crave despite negative consequences. (This is why those patients could crave porn without liking it.) Worse, over time, a damaged dopamine system makes one more "tolerant" to the activity and needing more stimulation, to get the rush and quiet the craving. "Tolerance" drives a search for ramped-up stimulation, and this can drive the change in sexual tastes towards the extreme.
How about prayer? I've been praying for my friend over the last couple of days as well as abstaining from my favorite vices. My prayer has been the Rosary, said while thinking of good times together. I can't help breaking down from time to time as I pray. It can get pretty intense.

Question: Won't repeated acts like this rewire my brain to be more sympathetic and loving towards others?



ligneus said...

My two rules for living, keep moving and stay cheerful. Note, stay cheerful not be cheerful.
When I say this to people, they are ok with the keep moving but the stay cheerful is somehow beyond their ken. They think being cheerful all the time is both not possible and stupid to think possible. OK, yes I know life gets you down sometimes, and in the light of these responses I question my own cheerfulness, but maybe I'm just in a cognitive loop that re-inforces itself, maybe I'm lucky, maybe I'm a bit silly! Being 81 and still in good health helps, not sure how I would cope with serious illness, maybe I'll find out. Maybe being mostly cheerful helps ward off serious illness. It's all a bit mysterious.

From Meister Eckhart, 13th century German theologian.

If the only prayer you say in your whole life is Thankyou, that will suffice.

Sorry to ramble, hope I make some sense.

Anonymous said...

Prayer I think is a great sort of CBT. I'm terribly lazy when it comes to regular prayer, but when faced with temptation to do something unwise, prayer gets me back on an even keel. I don't pray for myself, I just pray. (Jewish equivalent of the rosary, to put it simplistically.)

I will say prayers for others (like your friend.)

I also agree with staying cheerful. It helps yourself be less miserable, and didn't spread the misery to others.

K T Cat said...

I love you both. Ligneus, I had always thought you were about 50 years younger. All that cheerfulness is working better than Oil of Olay!

Anon, bless you and thank you. You said it well, prayer is CBT.