The feelings rise up in you, and you usually can't just remove them. You cannot drown them out with something else. Yes, you can do something you like, or you can take a bath, or you can listen to music, or you can go outside - you can do all kinds of things, but it is a much more substantial process, you could say. Feelings are not as easy to control as the life of thought. We have experienced in the last two years how important it is, as human beings participating in world events, that we have an educated sense of judgment. Now, of course, most people don't really have that and some people are naturally more gifted than others, but it is very clear that when really serious things happen, it is important that we also understand exactly what is happening. And that does not mean that we can understand every detail and that we can see exactly what is causing everything, but that every time we are confronted with messages, with announcements, from whatever source, we make an effort to absorb them as best we can, in such a way that we stay as close as possible to a possible truth. This experience has become very strong in the last two years, and of course this was not only the case for me. I was then asked to write down what we can do as human beings to develop our capacity for judgement in our thinking. So not only to do it with what is gifted from your predisposition and from what has happened in your life, but also to try to develop that. And I am convinced that every person has that possibility, if he or she wants it. And that led to the booklet that I presented here once already with the title "Learn to Think".
It is mainly about perception with the senses and the thinking that goes with that. And there is a whole area of life where that is actually enough. As soon as you are dealing with exact facts, observing those facts and thinking about them is enough to know for sure that you are in the truth. That is more or less naturally the case in the whole area of arithmetic and mathematics. But of course there is also a whole area where you cannot have that. And in that area we have had to operate very strongly in recent years, that all sorts of things are happening, being said, that can be seen, that can be seen on videos, that can be read in the newspapers, whereby one does not have that certainty that one knows what is actually going on. And that is nothing new, of course; it has been the case with many events in the past, but in recent years it has been very much put to the test. And there, with these events, there is no certainty of truth. There you cannot say: if I have my perception, with my senses, either I have seen, or I have heard, or I have read, and I think that over, I clear that up with my thinking, so that I know what is written there, what has been said, that you then also know that you are in the truth. That that is also in accordance with how it really is. That feeling, that sense of certainty, that we as more or less critical people - and by critical I don't mean negative critical, but critical in the sense that you stay with your consciousness on what you are actually experiencing - that we as critical people have had to lack that sense of 'I am certain that the facts are as they are communicated to us'. That area of truth, which we have naturally in an exact sense, but not in life, refers to another area of the human being. It is not so much the thinking that is decisive there, but a completely different world comes into play, and that is the world of the sentient life. And by sentient life I do not mean the physical feeling, not the feeling in the sense of I do not feel well, or I feel tired or whatever, but I mean living in certain moods of sympathy and antipathy. And this then led us not to stop at the booklet Learn to Think, but to expand the theme, as it were, with a title "Learn to Feel". Feeling is a completely different area of the human being. If one is going to observe, then one has to use one's will, one has to pay attention. When you start thinking, then you have to be alert, you cannot observe and then at the same time, half dreaming about something else, think that you are taking in reality, no, you have to be there with your thinking. So there is a strong field of will there. But feeling is actually very spontaneous and inescapable. That feeling rises up in you. And of course we all know that when we wake up in the morning, we can have a natural mood like: hey I feel good and I am starting the day. I am in the mood, I like it all. But it is also possible that you have to drag yourself along and that you don't have positive feelings about this at all, but actually more of an antipathy of: I don't feel like it, or I find it difficult and my mood is depressed. These are sensations that come to us naturally. We don't really have the power over them. Of course, we often don't have power over our thoughts either, they come and go, but we can overrule them by deliberately setting them in motion. When you have to study, for example, so you have to study for an exam, then you have to put aside your ordinary thoughts and then you have to exchange them for the thoughts that you have to absorb. There you have a certain freedom. But in the emotional life you hardly have that. There, the feelings rise up in you, and you usually can't just remove them. You cannot drown them out with something else. Yes, you can do something you like, or you can take a bath, or you can listen to music, or you can go outside - you can do all kinds of things, but it is a much more substantial process, you could say. Feelings are not as easy to control as the life of thought. And now it is so, that when you have to interpret, when you have to give a message, or an event, or a conversation, or whatever, when you have to give it the right place in your mind, when you have to say: is this true or not?, then it comes down to the emotional life. And in the emotional life there is actually the experience of truth. This is not the self-evident thing, what you have with perception and thinking, here comes something mysterious, there comes a question: what am I to do with this, is it true, is it not true - and then it comes down to the fact that you have a sense in the emotional life that helps you to know: yes, or no, or I don't know. And when you are completely filled with personal emotions, when you cannot free yourself from those personal emotions and you have to interpret, then of course you can understand that those personal emotions colour or even determine the interpretation. And that's what we have in life, when we experience the same situation as people, then the interpretation is often completely different. And that has to do with the personal emotional life that also determines what you think of something. That, that kind of feeling everyone has and that is not the feeling I mean when I say 'Learn to Feel'. By learning to feel, I mean the feeling that lies hidden underneath, where truth can really be experienced. And I have tried in this book as in Learn to Think! I have tried - it is not always possible - not to lapse into reflections as I do now, where you state certain things and then the reader has to interpret - but in fact he also has to interpret 'is that so or is that not so?' I have chosen another way and that is that this way runs along exercises. Not too complicated exercises, where step by step you get more insight in what is present in your emotional life, what feelings rise up in you every time. They really do rise. You cannot just say 'I don't want them'. You can only feel that it is there, and you can learn to distinguish that it does not have so much to do with the interpretation of reality, but that it has especially to do with your reality. And that is actually the great struggle among people. When the truth is immediately apparent from observation and thinking, then there is actually little need for discussion. But when that is not the case, and you get the more mysterious process of forming a judgment with feeling, then there is a discussion among people and that discussion is then not really about perceiving and thinking, because you couldn't find it there, it is about interpretation. And then interpretation with feeling. Because you can also interpret with the thinking.
You can do a series of exercises for that, first to become aware that you have those feelings. Because they are often in an area, or in fact they are always in an area, where the consciousness is not as clear as in thinking, but where you have more of an awareness which is similar to when you are daydreaming, not as clear but still present, but you can also look over it. And so the first step is actually to become aware that you have feelings when you read a text, when you watch a programme, when you see a film, that you learn to pay attention to the fact that you carry all possible feelings within yourself. And so I have tried to lead you step by step through exercises to the point where you gently begin to experience yourself as a human being who has yet another emotional life within him, namely the feeling life that really has to do with the truth. But for this, you must first throw out a great deal of personal ballast and retain what you really carry within you in the form of your deepest feelings of sympathy and antipathy. And there we people are indeed, yes I can't say equal, but there we have an equivalence, there we have a kind of equal perception of whether something is true or not and if we could reach that area, then on the one hand we would be much more able to have a sense of certainty in the interpretation of how things actually are, that on the one hand, and on the other hand we would be able to come to a unity, a harmony, with our fellow human beings who are also going down this training path. Not in a monotonous harmony, literally, that everyone has the same tone; no, those tones will always be different. But in being different, a harmony will be able to emerge. That seems to me one of the ideals of being human, that you can be in harmony with your fellow man also in judgment. And that does not mean that you all say the same thing. For one has a very different aspect in finding the truth than the other. But the perception of truth lies for all of us under the surface of our personal emotional life. And if we first become aware that this personal emotional life exists, and how strong is the voice with which it speaks, then we can gradually penetrate to that layer of truth of the emotional life, where you learn to experience the value of a communication. Of course, in the space of a small book you cannot describe a path that is intended for a lifetime, but you can set something in motion, and I hope that this can contribute to the development of us human beings, ultimately towards freedom of thought, equality of feeling and fraternity in how we wish to live together in the will.Learn to Feel! From intuition to strong experience of truth by Mieke Mosmuller