Have you heard statements such as: “We become what we think about.”, “Man is the sum total of his own thoughts.” or “Man can create anything which he can imagine.”?
What if Imagination is Real? In this article I write about the power of true imagination. Is the type of article that presents what imagination is from different points of view and why it is important in our day by day life.
What I’ve done is that I’ve pulled out explanations from whom I consider to be masters of the human mind such as Napoleon Hill, Charles F. Hannel, Neville Goddard and Dr. Joe Dispenza. I’ll be highlighting four books explaining the power of imagination in different perspectives such as personal development, spiritual and neuroscience.
You may initially think that imagination is an artistic skill that only artists possess or, the playfulness state when kids are playing in a mental fantasy world.
In fact, imagination has everything to do with reality. It shapes the way we perceive circumstances and ideals, and therefore, affects our actions and behavior.
Imagination is a mental faculty, a constructive and focused thinking that we use to achieve a determined goal.
10 Powerful quotes on imagination
Let’s start the discussion with some powerful statements made over decades. My advice is to go through the entire article and then come back to these quotes. I can assure you that you’ll have a different perspective while reading them for the 2nd or 3rd time.
Every book that I read, every talk or interview that I watch says the same exact thing. This is one common point where all great minds have agreed upon – our entire life is being shaped based on our own thoughts, based on thoughts of imagination.
Any human has the ability to imagine and create their own life.
- “The Imagination is the most marvelous, miraculous, inconceivably powerful force the world has ever known.” – NAPOLEON HILL (self-help, personal development)
- “Imagination is the light by which we can penetrate new worlds of thought and experience.” – CHARLES F. HANNEL (philosopher, mental development, New Thought)
- “Man is only limited by weakness of attention and poverty of imagination.” – NEVILLE GODDARD (self-help, Bible, mysticism, power of awareness)
- The moment you imagine a new future for yourself, think about a new possibility.” – DR. JOE DISPENZA (mind-body medicine, brain-heart coherence, neuroscience)
- “Your hands are tied in action, but your hands are not tied in imagination and everything springs forth from imagination. Everything.” – ESTHER HICKS (inspirational speaker, law of attraction, New Thought)
- “Imagination is more important than knowledge”. “Logic will take you from A to B but imagination will take you everywhere” – ALBERT EINSTEIN (physicist, quantum physics, philosopher)
- “Picture yourself in your mind’s eye as having already achieved this goal” – EARL NIGHTINGALE (public speaker, personal development, motivation, meaningful existence)
- “Creative forces come only when there is a completely rounded-out thought, when there is a fully developed mental picture, or when the imagination can visualize the fulfillment of our ambition and see in our mind a picture of the object we desire.” – CLAUDE BRISTOL (journalist, science of thought, power of belief)
- “Formulate and stamp indelibly on your mind a mental picture of yourself as succeeding. Hold this picture tenaciously. Never permit it to fade. Your mind will seek to develop the picture… Do not build up obstacles in your imagination.”. “Imagination is the true magic carpet.” – NORMAN VINCENT PEALE (motivational speaker, minister, positive thinking)
- “Worry is a waste of imagination.” – WALT DISNEY (entrepreneur, animator, writer, voice actor, film producer)
Imagination is the 6th sense by Napoleon Hill (1937)
The first book that I want to go through is Think and Grow Rich (1937) by Napoleon Hill. It’s being said that this book is among the 10 best self-help books of all time. Hill wrote it at the age of 54 over a period of 20 years researching 500 successful people of the time.
It’s about the principles of transforming desires into concrete material forms. According to Hill, there are 30 major causes of failure but there are only 13 principles for success or laws of achievements. This book talks about desire, decision, the 6th sense, perceptions, and organized planning among many other things.
As Napoleon Hill explains, imagination is a mental faculty and the development and the use of our imagination leads to our success.
The imaginative faculty functions in two forms. One is known as synthetic imagination, and the other as creative imagination. Both the synthetic and creative imagination become more alert with use, just as any muscle of the body which develops through use. But also becomes weak through inaction.
SYNTHETIC IMAGINATION is the mental faculty that arranges old concepts, ideas, or plans into new combinations. It works based on experience, education, and observation but it doesn’t create anything new.
CREATIVE IMAGINATION is the faculty through which “hunches” and “inspirations” are being received. Through creative imagination, the human mind has direct communication with Infinite Intelligence. Is the “still small voice” which speaks from within.
Hill says that the creative imagination is the 6th sense or the great power of those who are considered to be geniuses. But it needs a cause, a thought, a desire at its root. DESIRE is an impulse, it is abstract at the beginning and has no value until it has been transformed into its physical counterpart.
“The sixth sense is the faculty which marks the difference between a genius and an ordinary individual.” – Napoleon Hill
The creative imagination functions best when the mind is functioning at a rate of higher vibration, higher than the ordinary, higher than normal thought (work-a-day thoughts).
A high level of thought excludes any kind of limitations of a VISION, there are no problems of gaining the three basic human necessities: food, clothing, and shelter. It’s like an airplane in the air from which you see over and beyond the horizon line whereas the vision from a ground level is being limited.
“The reality of a sixth sense has been fairly well established. This sixth sense is Creative Imagination. The faculty of creative imagination is one which the majority of people never use during an entire lifetime, and if used at all, it usually happens by mere accident. A relatively small number of people use, with deliberation and purpose aforethought, the faculty of creative imagination. Those who use this faculty voluntarily, and with understanding of its functions, are GENII.”
Imagination is a form of constructive thinking by Charles F. Haanel (1912)
We go way back in 1912 and look at The Master Key System written by Charles. F. Haanel. Haanel published this book when he was 46 years old. It has been written as 24 modules of studies in the form of a correspondence course in New Thought, mental development, financial success, and personal health.
In fact the work of Charles. F. Haanel has been an inspiration for Napoleon Hill in writing the book I’ve mentioned above, Think and Grow Rich.
At a glance The Master Key System seems hard to grasp, first of all because of the early 20th century writing style and secondly, it has an approach of the spiritual movement called New Thought or Higher Thought regarding the interaction between thought, belief and consciousness in the human mind.
However, it is written according to research and science and it’s incredibly up-to-date information about how the human mind works. It teaches the cultivation and best uses of imagination, what desire is, how to visualize the ideal, how to be guided by our intuition (vision within), and basically presents elements of the mental nature.
The way that Haanel presents Imagination is as a constructive method to create harmonious thinking in order to bring positive results into our lives.
Haanel nicely putes it “You can not entertain weak, harmful, negative thoughts ten hours a day and expect to bring about beautiful, strong, and harmonious conditions by ten minutes of strong, positive, creative thought.”
CONSTRUCTIVE THINKING is considered to be a spiritual act, is the link between the Universe and the Individual, between the Invisible and the Visible.
“The cultivation of the imagination leads to the development of the ideal out of which our future will emerge”. – Charles. F. Haanel
Every thought that we have is a vital principle of life, it’s an energy that grows with other similar thoughts. Thoughts take form and through the natural Law of Growth eventually will manifest into a personality, health and circumstances of an individual.
If your thoughts have been critical or destructive they have the result in creating discord or inharmony in your environment. In order to cultivate a mental attitude which will be constructive you need constructive thoughts as a CAUSE. Therefore, use your “constructive imagination” in order to develop harmony and the perception of the ideal.
“Imagination is a plastic power, molding the things of sense into new forms and ideals. Imagination is the constructive form of thought which must precede every constructive form of action.” – Charles. F. Haanel
CONSTRUCTIVE IMAGINATION means mental labor, considered by some to be the hardest kind of labor. Is not day-dreaming which is a form of mental dissipation and lack of focus.
Through constructive imagination we are able to create IDEAL circumstances and to visualize long-term dreams. Through the use of this power of thought we can confidently undertake things that appear to be impossible, because this power is the secret of all inspiration, all genius.
In order to cultivate imagination it must be exercised. Exercise is necessary to cultivate mental muscle as well as physical muscle. It must be nourished or it cannot grow. It must be fed with OBSERVATION and strong mental FOCUS on our ideal, your dream, your desire.
For example, analyze the quality of your own thoughts. If it’s a self-destructive thought that brings a discord result you must replace it with a positive one. How? By using Your Imagination. You need imagination to develop a new ideal.
The process of imagination creates impressions or visual images on the mind, and these impressions will form concepts and ideals which will generate plans from which a new future is being created. Only through will and imagination can we change our conditions.
“When the thought has been trained to look below the surface everything takes on a different appearance, the insignificant becomes significant, the uninteresting interesting; the things which we supposed to be of no importance are seen to be the only really vital things in existence.”
Imagination is the gateway of reality by Neville Goddard (1954)
Neville Goddard’s collection on “Imagination” presents a fascinating (you may say philosophical) approach on the power of imagination.
For this article, I looked into one specific book called Awakened Imagination initially written in 1954. Goddard’s teachings on mysticism and Bible are powerful lessons of the human psyche as opposed to religious or historical events. Goddard does not look at God as the answers to your prayers, but rather that “you are the creator” and imagination gives you the power to be anything you DESIRE to be.
Goddard explains that how we see the outer world and all what is happening around us is just a projection of the inner world of imagination, a world of thoughts and feelings.
“What we think FROM, we become” – Neville Goddard
This short statement means that our imagination is the creation power that builds our physical reality. FROM has a deep meaning, it means the state of mind, is the world within. Everything which an individual does or becomes is a manifestation of mental activity.
The majority of people aren’t even aware of their thoughts and emotions. But when you realize, when you become conscious of your inner activity you start to see the relationship between the inner causal world of imagination and the outer world of effects.
“It is a marvelous thing to find that you can imagine yourself into the state of your fulfilled desire and escape from the jails which ignorance built.” – Neville Goddard
From Goddard’s point of view, Imagination is one with the DESIRE.
Once you have a desire, you build a strong vision for it and you become the vision due to passion. Simply meaning that through imagination we have the power to be anything we desire to be.
The logical mind can not bring the solutions and the truth when we look for the exact ways, for the exact steps that we need to take in order to create something.
Other associated terms for imagination are such as the “determined imagination” or the “awaken imaginative life”.
AWAKEN IMAGINATIVE LIFE is when we discover that to imagine a thing is to make it so. It depends on the intensity of the imagination, not upon external facts. It means that we see everything in pure objectivity without any subjective relationship.
DETERMINED IMAGINATION is when we think from the end; we clearly see the outcome and not the process. Intensity of imagination means more than thinking about something specific, but it means that we are feeling the feelings as if the dream or desire has been fulfilled. Our imagination connects us with the DESIRE.
To take Goddards teaching a bit further, he explains that imagination is a spiritual act mentioned in the Gospels “Believe that ye receive and ye shall receive”. “Whatever you asked in prayers, believe you received it and you will” [Mark 11:24] or “Imagine that you are and you shall be” [Hebrews 11:27].
It is the power that comes from within waiting to be manifested into the visible world but the individual must recognize it first, then affirming it as his and “working it into his consciousness until he becomes one with it”.
Imagination is the process of evolving our brain by Dr Joe Dispenza (2008)
The work of Dr Joe Dispenza is absolutely fascinating. Through neuroscience, epi-genetics, brain chemistry and quantum physics demonstrates the effects of meditation and how people heal themselves or completely change their lives.
It’s the present-day science supporting what an average mind is calling “impossible”, “miracles” or “spontaneous remissions”. Check this video as a brief 3 Secrets To Unlock The Full Power Of Your Mind Today With Joe Dispenza | Lewis Howes.
In his many books, workshops and research Joe Dispenza is showing that using imagination you can bring yourself into a New Self. It’s literally a building process for making a new mind, the platform of the new self by forcing the brain to fire in new neuropatherns.
One specific book that I’m looking into is Evolve Your Brain: The Science of Changing Your Mind. This book as any other publications of Joe Dispenza has a strong scientific basis and it clearly shows us that we can change our brain’s structure just by thinking and by mental rehearsing something. Whether we consciously or unconsciously create thoughts and actions, we are always affirming and reaffirming a neurological self.
“Keep in mind that whatever you spend your time mentally attending to, that is what you are and what you will become. ” – Dr Joe. Dispenza
Brain’s activity can be measured through brain-wave frequencies that give information about what we’re thinking, feeling, learning, dreaming, creating and how we are processing information.
Very briefly, brain-wave frequencies are ranging from 0.1Hz to 100Hz, and every interval is also referred as: Low – Medium – High. For exemple, high-Beta means the state of stress and anxiety while low-Beta means logical thinking.
- Delta (0.1 – 3 Hz) – deep sleep state, detached awareness, healing
- Theta (4 – 7 Hz) – twilight state, between deep sleep and wakefulness, meditation
- Alpha (8 – 15 Hz) – imaginative and creative state, relaxation
- Beta (16 – 30 Hz) – conscious thought, alertness, cognition, common type of thinking but also stress
- Gamma (31 – 100 Hz) – to the highest frequencies recorded, the elevated states of consciousness (or the mystic state)
In high-Beta state, the outer world appears stronger than the inner world. Our attention and thoughts are focused on everything from our external environment. Our minds get obsessed about problems rather than focused on solutions. When you are stuck in high-Beta, it’s hard to learn, hard to be open to the new, hard to create.
However, it is possible to consciously move from high-frequency Beta state into Alpha and Theta. Once you do so, personal change starts to happen because this is beyond the common type of thinking, this is the realm of the subconscious mind. This is the creative and imaginative state and the brain naturally recalibrates itself to a more orderly, coherent brain-wave pattern.
“Alpha state (the imaginative and creative state) serves as the bridge between the conscious mind and the subconscious mind.” – Dr. Joe Dispenza
Imagination and the ability to invent are located in our brain’s frontal lobe. This brain region is the most adaptable to change and is the means that it evolves based on thoughts and actions.
THE FRONTAL LOBE is located behind the forehead and right above the eyes and is the last part of the brain that develops. The frontal lobe controls and regulates other parts of the brain. It controls the behavior, dreams of new ideas, and guides us throughout life.
“You hold the image of yourself in the frontal lobe, and what you hold in this special place determines how you interact in the world and perceive reality.” – Dr Joe. Dispenza
Functional brain scan technology (real time scans of human brains) proves that when people are focused and concentrated on something, the brain circuits associated with time, space, and the sensory perceptions of the body are literally quiet down.
In other words, as human beings we can make our thoughts more real than anything else, and when we do so, the brain records those impressions in the deep folds of its tissues.
MENTAL REHEARSAL allows us to rewire our brains and change our lives with a new version. This mental rehearsing means memorizing the New You. It is a creative process so you have to be imaginative, free, and spontaneous.
“This is how you biologically change the brain and body to no longer live in the past but rather to chart a map to the future. If the body and brain are changed, then there is physical evidence that you are changed.” – Dr Joe. Dispenza
The way that Dispenza explains is that our personality consists of how you habitually think, act, and feel. So by consciously imaginining and rehearsing an ideal we’ll modify the old brain circuits of the brain to the extent of the ideal desired. The ideal will change responses, behaviors, and attitudes as natural. But first you need to imagine your future.
Questions and Answers
In essence the power of imagination and how we use it in our lives can be either as struggle or growth, your DESIRE is what makes the difference.
What is imagination?
Imagination is a mental faculty and together with Perception, Will, Memory, Intuition and Reason is what makes us different from the 5-sens world of animals.
Imagination is the magic in your mind, is your mental laboratory that builds the desired dream. It can be the dream health, the dream job, the dream house, the dream business, the dream relationship, it really doesn’t matter what the dream is.
Imagination is the energy that EQUALS your DESIRE.
The brain (the subconscious mind) does not know the difference between imagination and reality. It’s literally a process of changing the brain’s neurological network to the point where the body changes. Therefore all your mindset and actions change accordingly.
Spirituality says that Imagination is a nonphysical element, a high level of consciousness, a spiritual act above the five senses. Also known as the gift from the Universe. Imagination does not come from the individual and subjective mind but from the universal and objective mind where there are no boundaries, no limitations, no lack.
Our imagination connects us with the DESIRE.
How to maintain imagination?
Imagination requires mental labor, not day-dreaming or fantasizing. It requires mental FOCUS and a strong BELIEF that our dream is possible. However, it doesn’t “come” unless you are expanding your knowledge and constantly repeating it.
Brain science shows that when imagination is done right with strong mental rehearsal, it changes the brain’s and body’s chemistry. You’ll start to actually SEE, FEEL and THINK as real.
Our subconscious mind does not know the difference between imagined and real.
What does imagination need?
Imagination is centered on a desire, ideal. Imagination holds us to our IDEAL. We imagine how things will be if the DESIRE is real. Once we start to imagine the outcome, thoughts become a state of mind (a new mindset).
As the imagination becomes more profound, you’ll imagine the details, see, feel and believe already in the possession of the desire.
What does imagination look/feel like?
Human imagination is an act of high vibration (frequency) that changes beliefs and perceptions. Imagination represents both mental and emotional activities. The moment there’s a match between the imagination and belief, this union will start to manifest the DESIRE.
Imagination has no obstacles and limitations as the 5 senses and logical thinking.
When we desire something we don’t think about the challenges throughout the journey. Imagination is the thinking from the end. We clearly see the outcome and not the ways of getting there.
Takeaway: Know your desire and imagine your ideal
Imagination is one of those things that has opposite associations. For example, one person can be suspicious and worried and we say that is a “victim of personal imagination” while another one is passionate about a dream and we call that one a “a person of imagination”. Or, we may say to someone “use your imagination” meaning to find new ways in handling a situation.
Through constructive and harmonious imagination you mentally build your DESIRE.
You don’t have to know How you’re gonna get the Desire, you just know from your heart What that is. It can be your health, a job, a home, a relationship. Your conscious and logical mind can not find the proper ways to set in motion all the causes for the Desire to happen.
As you get involved into this, as you start imagining the ideal you’ll start to see how everything falls into place, it changes your perceptions, your attitudes, your mindset and your actions.
Try to answer the following five questions, I call them “hard questions” because you are forcing your mind to think in different ways than you’d typically do, to entertain new possibilities. This “imagination” turns on your frontal lobe, the seat of consciousness.
REMEMBER: Think with No Limitations as time, location, money or even health. Regardless of what your background might have been, regardless of your present, whatever you want, can you imagine it? Can you imagine like you already have your desire?! Imagine it and don’t analyze it like you must do this and that.
All you’re asked to do is to imagine and believe that your ideal is possible.
- What is my new ideal self?
- What would this new person (my ideal) think?
- What is my new attitude? How do I want to act?
- How would I speak as this new expression of self?
- What would my new energy be like?
- How do I want to live?
- “Think and Grow Rich” (1937) by Napoleon Hill
- “Master Key System” (1912) by Charles F. Haanel
- “Awakened Imagination” (1954) by Neville Goddard
- “Evolve your Brain, The Science of Changing Your Mind” (2007) by Joe Dispenza