“When you are at leisure, and are able to indulge in ‘day dreams’ without injury to your affairs of life, call your imagination into play and endeavor to picture yourself as being possessed of the qualities indicated by the words named. Picture yourself under the most trying circumstances, making use of the desired qualities, and manifesting them fully. Endeavor to picture yourself as acting out your part well, and exhibiting the desired qualities. Do not be ashamed t indulge in these day-dreams, for they are the prophecies of things to follow, and you are but rehearsing your part before the day of performance. Practice makes perfect, and if you accustom yourself to acting in a certain way in imagination, you will find it much easier to play your part when the real performance occurs. … Choose well the part you wish to play … Keep your ideal constantly before you, and endeavor to grow into it.” ~William Walker Atkinson
Imagination is one of the most powerful tools we possess. We used it often when we were children. But we seem to think it is too childish a thing to continue using it as an adult. Nothing could be further from the truth.
As an adult, we must use our imagination is a different way, but we should still use it. Instead of having imaginary friends, or imagining we are princes and princesses living in a castle and riding dragons, we can use it to help us get he things we really want.
The first rule of using imagination wisely is that we must imagine only that which is possible. You can see yourself riding a dragon forever, yet it still won’t happen. But if it is something you could realistically do, then imagining yourself doing it has great benefit.
Using Imagination in the Material World
There have been many scientific studies in recent decades that have demonstrated the effectiveness of using imagination. Whether you call it visualization, positive thinking, or some other title, it works. In sports, athletes who were taught to visualize themselves accomplishing their goals before an event didn’t better than those who didn’t use this method. People who are nervous about public speaking can reduce their tension by imagining themselves giving the talk successfully. And the job seeker who visualizes herself getting the job will likely do so. In essence, all you are doing is programming, or reprogramming, your subconscious mind. Replace a failure program with one of success, and your chances of success will dramatically increase.
Using Imagination for Spiritual Growth
There are many ways that imagination can be used to help in your quest for spiritual enlightenment as well. If you have a busy schedule and can’t seem to find the time to do your spiritual reading and spiritual practices, you can visualize yourself getting other tasks done quicker so you will have time. Or you can visualize yourself eliminating pointless and unnecessary tasks from your schedule to make time. Most importantly, imagine yourself getting to those spiritual practices every day. Only five or ten minutes a day will do.
If you know that you have dreams regularly, some of which may be prophetic, but can’t remember them, using imagination can help. Just imagine yourself waking and remembering your dream in detail. Imagine yourself writing down what happened in the dream, or recording it. The best time to do this is when you are in bed just before you go to sleep.
Imagine yourself moving forward each time you do your spiritual practices. See yourself getting closer and closer to the ultimate goal of Oneness with God or the All. Using imagination can be very helpful in all aspects of life.
Using Imagination Incorrectly
Imagination can be helpful. It can also be a crutch. Using imagination to see yourself in fantasy worlds rather than dealing with issues in the real one is misuse of imagination. Seeing yourself as already so perfect that you need make no effort to improve s also the wrong way to use it. It does help when using imagination to see things as having already happened, but not to the extend of doing nothing to actually make them happen. Using imagination needs to be accompanied by appropriate actions to succeed.