Last Updated: April 8th, 2019

The mind thinks it’s always right

The mind can’t help but think it’s always right. Every single one of our thoughts is privately personal and unique to the person thinking. When we choose to think about it, we know what we were thinking. We say, “I was thinking, my thought was … , I’ll think about it.”

Conscious thought is self-reflective thought about thought. “I was thinking, I thought, I’m thinking now,” are conscious thoughts, as are, “I am not thinking now,” or, “I wasn’t thinking.” We can remember our thoughts, especially what we’ve just thought, or if what we thought is important to us or helped us make a decision or form an opinion. We remember what we thought and why we thought it.

Thought has a habit of thinking it’s right. Even when thought admits it was wrong, it rights itself to be right again. Thought cannot live with thinking it’s wrong. Thought can only change its mind. “I used to think that, and now I don’t. I was wrong, but now I’m right,” we say. That’s the best thought can do. Well, actually, the best we can do is be open-minded and know that we don’t know, and only think we do, but most of us aren’t like that.

“Wrong” thoughts belong to the past, the future, and others

To us, thought is never wrong in the present moment. If it thinks it’s wrong, it changes what it thinks in an instant, in order to be right again. If someone doesn’t agree with you, they must be wrong, or, if you see that they’re right, then you must have been wrong. You were mistaken, so you now agree with them, and doing that makes you right again!

The self-correcting mind says, “You thought I was wrong, but now I agree with you, so now I’m right,” or, “They’re wrong and I’m right. They should change what they think,” or, “They can’t help it, they just don’t realize they’re wrong.”

At the personal level, thought is never wrong. Other people’s thoughts might be wrong, but not mine. Mine are not wrong, and if and when they are, I’ll change them and make them right. Thought always rights itself and stays on the side of right. No one lives with thoughts that are wrong—it’s impossible. We cannot admit we are wrong, only that we were wrong. All our thoughts that were wrong belong to the past. We can also say, “I might be wrong in the future,” but we can never think, “I’m wrong now,” and stay with a thought we know to be wrong.

Only right thoughts occur in the present moment, and wrong thoughts belong only to the past, the future, or other people. That’s why it’s so difficult to admit you’re wrong, because you never think you are—you can’t, not in the present moment. It’s impossible for the mind to believe it’s wrong. It can only believe that it was wrong in the past, and might be wrong again in the future, but not now. My realization, “I was wrong,” is always instantly consigned to the past, and now, I’m alright again, because I’m right again.

Mindful awareness and the “self-correcting” mind

When we become mindfully aware of the self-correcting mind, of the mind that always thinks it’s right, the mind that corrects itself when it thinks it’s wrong, we’ll see the end of the “right mind.” Something new that is beyond black and white, and right and wrong, will be born.

Amongst ourselves, we’re approaching the beginning of the end of the self-correcting “I know” mind, the “I am right” mind, and we’re witnessing the birth of the “I don’t know” mind. This is a mind that is open, curious and aware, producing thoughts without opinions, without rock-solid positions, and without certainty.

True freedom of thought has arrived, and we don’t have to believe our thoughts anymore. We don’t have to be right anymore. We can just allow thinking to think whatever it thinks. We can even allow the mind to think it’s right while we know that it doesn’t really know, it just thinks it does!

Thought has been set free, and so have we.

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image: Hartwig HKD (Creative Commons BY-ND)