Notice the definition above says it is an INTENTIONAL ACT and there are two parties involved, the sender and the receiver. If we could open our mind and go deeper into exploring this word and relinquish its negative connotation for a moment, we might be able to learn something from it.
Intentional means we must be conscious of our actions, we are aware that we are doing something. The two parties are actually our self and our mind in communicating, the mind being the sender and the receiver is us interpreting the results.
So, if I want financial prosperity, a noble goal that I am working on currently, I could use this concept in a wonderful way.
I would deceive myself by concocting a false belief that I am already the person that I would like to be. For me, I have a constant picture in my mind, i.e. I am relaxing in my garden, a big one filled with lots of fruit trees that I like - papaya, chilli, tomatoes, lettuce, etc and I can hear birds chirping at the background. It is a peaceful moment and my two dogs, Joy and Lucky are both playing happily on the other side. I am sitting and watching my investment portfolio, feeling happy and contented. Later that night, we would have a wonderful party that I am looking for to. Many friends whom I have not seen for a while are coming by to catch up and I am sure we would have a great time together.
Some brought their kids and I could see them playing in the pool, shouting and running around as if they were free from all entanglements of life. What a great lesson we can learn from kids, they are always in the moment, never worrying if the next day is a test they need to do. Adults on the other hand get more panicky and anxious over trivial things sometimes, I think. But all is good, all these worries are gone. Right now, we are enjoying the moment, relishing the memories that different friends have crossed our lives and we chatted about the good old times and our future with much anticipation.
The biggest obstacle that stops people from getting what they want be it financial prosperity, health, relationship with someone or career growth is not that we lack a superb edge like a method or system, or know someone who can connect us to our ultimate goal as we are often told. That to me is superficial, what we experienced on the outside.
DOUBT is the biggest evil and obstacle in our pursuit of our goals. Nobody said, out of mind , out of sight but most would say the reverse as it has always been, right ? So, if I tell you I am rich and wealthy, you would want to see some evidence, where's the house, the car or the money I have. And if I do not display in any concrete, measurable way but filled with talks after talks, you might not be very convinced and thus would not find this method worth learning at all.
Totally understand. That was where I was but not anymore. I too fall into the trap like most people and like most people, they only dream but seldom live their dream life. They continue to blame their horoscope, their parents, environment, etc of the lack of the things that are not happening in their lives.
And Jesus answered and said to them, "See to it that no one misleads you. "For many will come in My name, saying, 'I am the Christ,' and will mislead many. Matthew 24.4.5. Christ is the power and the wisdom of God and those who proclaimed that they can foretell our future ; are they not disguising as the false "Christ"? And if we start to believe in one, it would multiply over time. And these false prophets are making money out of those who choose to believe in their products and talks. I used to be one of them as if discovering the holy grail and that's it, I would be successful now that I had discovered "the secret to life". Only when it fails after a while, I went deeper like a lost child in a jungle in search for the next "enlightened one". Do you have to pay a cent for God's words ? Do we/I place him as the first person to goto when we have troubles or as the last resort? Did he not say, "Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Isaiah 55.1
Why do humans trust the made and forget about the maker ? After all, we were made in his image and to have dominion over the earth. So that make us superior in a certain way, a very powerful way, one that many of us have not tapped into this resources. But we are gullible and seduced by man's words to part our money to have a piece of hope from another person when the Maker has it all planned out for all of us.
Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. Galatians 6.7. If this verse holds water (and it does), then God's words cannot return to him void. It is we, the humans who plant our own seeds (good or evil) and when the harvest is right in front of us, we are not be able to remember what we had planted some time ago.
If I am the man that I would like to be, then the feelings that I should have now should be one filled with gratitude, happiness, peace and progressive and not one of doubt, constant frustration, anger, shame, etc. The mood swings that we all experienced make us go through life like a roller coaster, sometimes we hit high then we go down, following the track and allowing it to take control over our feelings. That must changed and one that require urgent attention and action, in my opinion.
Doubt tell us to trust , to rely, to believe what we see on the outside. Is that why so many of us spend countless hours to conjure an image of superiority, success and achievement on the outside; our appearance, dressing, the cars and houses we stayed? God on the other hand, see what lies inside of us and he wants us to first believe, to have faith in his words with no doubt and whatever we asked of him will be provided. In theory, it seems easy to understand but in practice, we all fall short of achieving what we want. We need something visible so that our eyes take in the picture and the mind release the feelings of belief. Was this the downside of our education and our way of bringing up, I wonder ? If your kids score 100/100, then he is considered good or else you are worried about his future, his career, etc. What can he do , what will he do if he cannot get a degree, and how can he get a degree with such low marks? So the journey of providing him with tuition close the gap and the collective anxiety of parents, the hope and fear in culmination make this market a billion dollars industry.
It is tough when people doubt us but it is worse when we doubt ourselves, that is a double whammy. And where does doubt come from? It is likely that we receive it when we were young, received from our caregivers, the school environment, the very people whom we love and respect - our parents and family members who probably had no idea how much damage they had caused to our self-esteem. So we hide these hurting feelings and we retaliate either by withdrawing( act of timid, shyness, fear to dream, take action) or defending (take on unnecessary risk, need to prove, aggressive, anger, etc) our action.
Solution? Simply deceive yourself by imagining the person you want to be - out of the state that you are currently in - whatever you lack in life - financial, health, family, relationship, career, etc.
"Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. Matthew 18.19
The two of you refers to our conscious and our subconscious mind - it must be in agreement. Have you not been in situation where you want something but deep down have a feeling that you are not worthwhile of having it, not deserving to win the competition, to gain the fortune or to have the dream girl. If you say yes, then there is an element of doubt resides within you. There is a conflict of agreement.Thus how can the prayer be answered, how can the goal be fulfilled? No amount of tears or begging God would improve the situation.
Lastly, is it not stated in the scriptures - My Father's house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. John 14.2-3