You are currently viewing The Spiritual Meaning of Mind Over Matter

The Spiritual Meaning of Mind Over Matter

What’s The Meaning of Mind Over Matter?

“Mind over matter” gets a lot of hype these days.

The popular phrase is usually used to refer to our ability to overcome difficult situations. Motivational speakers and leaders often use it to encourage us to push through, persist, and keep our eye on our goals…no matter how difficult they may be.

But, is this the real meaning of the phrase? In this post we’ll dive into what mind over matter really means, taking a look at spiritual and psychological interpretations, as well as a few simple exercises to help you practice putting mind over matter in your own life.

Mind Over Matter in Psychology

I think the best way to think about understanding this phrase is to imagine you’re peeling back layers. There are many different interpretations, and no one single perspective is the Be All and End All.

In fact, the very phrase itself alludes to our ability to perceive life differently than what is…but we’ll get to that in a moment.

First, let’s look at what I believe is by far the most common use of the phrase: the psychological interpretation.

On the surface, it can mean simple that our determination to act, brings about the circumstances in which we live.

If we choose to pursue a goal, and we dedicate our mind to focusing on that goal, learning everything we can about it, and pursuing it with all of our passion and energy, then sooner or laer, we WILL achieve our goal.

In this way, out mind – our ability to think and imagine ourselves into the future – brings about the reality in which we live. Thought creates action. Action creates reality. Hence: mind over matter.

This level of understanding is extremely popular, and we can use it in our daily lives, to help with:

  • Motivation
  • Persistence
  • Encouragement
  • Focus, and
  • Inner Drive

However, if we stop here, we miss out on a much deeper, spiritual meaning.

What Does The Bible Say About Mind Over Matter?

While the Bible does not use the specific phrase (It is believed to have been first coined by Sir Charles Lyell in 1863), there are many passages that support a deeper spiritual meaning.

Under a more spiritual interpretation, Mind is akin to God, and is the creator of the world. Our individual human minds are, like Christ, the Son of God, which can be understood to mean that each of us, individually, creates his own worldly experience.

Neville Goddard was a major supporter of this view, writing that first there was the Word, (Thought, or Mind), and then the expression of that Word. Mind, then, literally comes before matter.

My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.

John 10:30

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

Mark 11:24

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

2 Corinthians 5:17

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

John 14:12

Where Does Mind Over Matter Come From?

Mind over matter can be understood best when simplified into what the mind means. The mind, meaning the part of us that reasons, makes decisions, perceives, and reasons. This then goes to explain using the will of the mind we can dictate the matter of our reality and our experience of it.

Very commonly this phrase can be found in reference to controlling physical pain or strong sensations. It goes hand in hand with the placebo effect, which in psychology is when someone believes what they are receiving will benefit them. Although they actually receive an inactive treatment they still reap the benefits due to the belief they are being given a healing treatment.

Sir Charles Lyell referred to the term “mind over matter” in 1863 within The Geological Evidence of the Antiquity of Man. It was in reference to the expansion within animals’ minds and the exponential evolution of man.

Examples Of Mind Over Matter

The practice of yoga is of a spiritual development of awareness. This teaches the yogi how to control and become aware of the subtleties within the body, mind, and spirit.

Dr. Herbert Benson, a professor at Harvard Medical School went to Upper Dharamsala, a Himalayan Indian town in 1981 to study the yogis who practiced tummo meditation. The yogi’s practiced in about 4 degrees celsius conditions and sheets dripping with icy water on their naked bodies.

The yogis were able to not only dry the sheets but to make them steam. In these conditions, the average human would not be able to stop their body from shivering uncontrollably.

Bensen measured the monk’s internal temperature and found the rectal temperature did not change but within the fingertips and toes found an increase of up to 8.3 degrees celsius.

Another example is Air Force Colonel George Hall who had been captured in the Vietnam war and experienced one of the longest captivities in American history. During his seven years of imprisonment, he spent his time mentally visualizing playing golf.

The intriguing and thought-provoking aspect of his experience is that when Hall was released one of the first things he wanted to do was, of course, play golf despite being 100 pounds lighter and not having played in seven years. He managed to shoot a 76 which goes to display his body formulated muscle memory from his daily mental playing.

How To Practice Mind Over Matter: Techniques and Exercises

To begin strengthening your mind over matter you can begin by practicing meditation. Many ancient yogis and monks have been found to learn to control their physiology by expanding their awareness.

Meditation techniques such as mindfulness guide you to become aware of the subtleties within your body. Through this, you can become aware of how you interact and impact them. Try this mindfulness guided meditation for exploring your sense of touch.

Pranayama is a yoga technique meaning to extend the breath in order to move prana or life force energy throughout your chakras. This practice trains and strengthens the mind to be able to have a singular focus. Click here to find a sound healing for all seven chakras.

When the ability to direct the mind is more accessible then you can more intimately dictate the experiences you have and the experiences you create.

Mind Over Matter and The Law Of Attraction

It is no doubt our minds can dictate the experience we have of our reality. When deciding to think positively we can alter our perception of any situation simply by making the committed decision to do so.

Our mind actually has even more power than simply changing our perception and emotional state. It has to power to bring into physical manifestation that which we focus and hone in on through the law of attraction.

Leave a Reply