The True Form of “Positive Thinking” (Part 1)


The Question:

We have been taught that “In general, life should be approached with a positive mindset.” However, I believe that a certain level of realism is necessary to avoid shallow positivity. What kind of attitude is necessary to properly maintain this balance?

August 27, 2017, Happy Science Special Lecture Hall
From Lecture, “How I Perceive and Think”


Realistically, there are few people who can achieve their childhood dreams.

If that dream were realistic, like wanting to inherit their parent’s occupation, it might be possible that a little over half would achieve their goal. However, if that dream was something arbitrary and far-fetched like rising to a high-power position, becoming an amazing hero, achieving huge success in the business world, or becoming a prodigy baseball player or a chess master, these are extremely difficult to attain from a realistic point of view.

You might wonder, why, then do I advocate positive thinking and optimism? You must know that if your goal were to become the best out of the vast number of people all over the world, your chance of losing is incredibly high. The chance of coming out at the top is 1 in 100,000, 1 in a million, 1 in 10 million, 1 in 100 million, or even zero.

However, that competition can be with yourself. Thoughts like this may have occurred to you: “If I go along the path I am currently on, I can only see myself becoming a mediocre person.” If so, you must fight against the current and believe that there are qualities about yourself that are better—that you can achieve a brighter future if you just change your thoughts and lead life slightly differently.

I think many times, people blame their environments for their inability to succeed. There can be many excuses, like being born to bad parents, having a single parent, their company going bankrupt, the college entrance process not going as expected, or having to quit school halfway.

Perhaps you might have been unable to open your future as planned because of your marriage, newborn babies, or your parent’s illness.

If you blame others, your surroundings, and your environment too much, you are left without control in life. When you do not have control and are carried on by life, you’re very likely to deteriorate.


The River’s Current and Life

Life, in a way, is like trying to swim against the flow of a river; if you continue to swim with all your might, you may be able to stay where you are or progress a tiny amount. Even if you just want to go across to the other side, you will end up being carried away by the flow and swim diagonally. Life is like this. If you estimate the current’s flow incorrectly, then things will not go well.

Relationships with various people, general business and political situations, and the time and money that it takes to accomplish your goals all represent the “current of the river.” These prevent you from swimming properly. Life reflects this; it is difficult to swim, unlike in a swimming pool where there is no current.

However, it is also true that you will never be able to reach the other side unless you jump in and try to swim across.

I believe that a true assertive and positive thinker is one that can predict some levels of difficulties and hardships in life, but even so is able to continue taking steps forward without being swept away by complaints and negativities.


Always Striving to Move Forward

Life was not made so people can breeze through without worrying about anyone else. Even though Japan’s population is on the decline, there are more than 100 million people in Japan, so things will not always go as you wish. Life is not that easy.

You should know that the future is bright for people who are positive and assertive and those who are able to recover quickly from obstacles and continue to move forward.

The whole point of this world is a hypothetical place where people are given various handicaps. You must live in this materialistic world cut off from the spiritual realm for decades; this is extremely difficult and means you are highly likely to lose track of your true self.

You will eventually return to the spiritual world, but you should always keep in mind to avoid leading a life that will fill you with regrets when you go back.


Polishing Your Soul Through Failure

You will realize that positive thinking is the means to realize your true self in this world, fix your soul’s inadequacies, and to improve various aspects of yourself.

If you have been leading life a certain way in the past, you might want to live a different type of life. For instance, if you were born as a king in multiple previous lives, it would be difficult for you to be born into a democratic world where you are not automatically at the top and your goal isn’t just to avoid having a reputation as a “bad leader.”

A democratic world is as severe as becoming the king in a swarm of fish. You will most likely encounter failure.

However, to someone who has experienced being king multiple times in their past lives, this failure would be a good experience as well. They might think of this life as being painful. They might realize that they were respected in their past lives just because they were born as a king. Since they will not have that kind of status in this life, they will not be able to get respect unless they earn it themselves.

To give a different example, is not uncommon for someone who is assassinated in this world to appear as a revered saint in the other world, as shown by the spiritual readings that our organization performs. From the point of view of this materialistic world, this person’s life may seem like a tragedy, but many times these people come out as bright angels in the afterlife.

When observing these instances, it becomes very clear that “success in this world is not everything.”

It may seem like you are suffering or facing obstacles, but you should be able to look at it from a different perspective and understand that these experiences are essential in order to strengthen your soul’s characteristics.

The True Form of “Positive Thinking” (Part 1)
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