For those kinds of minds that tend more to tick to the rhythm of reason (as opposed to the indiscriminate acceptance of any touchy-feely fuzz-ball of a theory), What the Bleep Do We Know!? is the timely arrival of an EMT at the bloody scene of a head-on with The Secret, 2007’s mega-self-help fuzz-ball.
I’d ignored What the Bleep when it debuted in theatres in 2004, but now I’m all over it. It’s the secret of The Secret in my opinion. The Secret is like a whizz-bang GUI with glitzy but link-less widgets and What the Bleep is a direct link to the CPU. The Secret tells us, for example, that thoughts cause feelings, and feelings cause reactions and choices from which our lives are created, and therefore we should think positive thoughts. That’s just a Band-aid ® on a hemorrhaging blood vessel. Pathology please!
And thank you to What the Bleep, although it takes its shot at fuzz and glitz, it predominantly splays out the mechanics of the brain and the chemicals it manufactures in direct relation to why and how thoughts and feelings are connected; why and how feelings cause predictable reactions that shape our lives; and why and how we can restructure our neural and chemical processes and sequences.
The odds seem stacked against humans from the get-go when you consider how our brains construct neural networks of connections and concepts that end up being skewed by individual experiences that are bad, good, or indifferent. So the true essence of any given thing is interpreted in as many ways as there are people on the planet. One person can hear the word “marriage” and run away screaming while another melts into a moony swoon.
“The brain is made up of tiny nerve cells called ‘neurons.’ These neurons have tiny branches that reach out and connect to other neurons to form a neural net. Each place where they connect is incubated into a thought or a memory. Now, the brain builds up all its concepts by the law of associative memory. For example, ideas, thoughts and feelings are all constructed and interconnected in this neural net and all have a possible relationship with one another. The concept and the feeling of love, for instance is stored in this vast neural net. But we build the concept of love from many other different ideas. Some people have love connected to disappointment. When they think about love, they experience the memory of pain, sorrow, anger and even rage. Rage may be linked to hurt, which may be linked to a specific person which then is connected back to love.”
Dr. Joseph Dispenza
We seem to be so abysmally at the mercy of emotions, the majority of us letting them boss and yank us around sometimes to such horrible places, that it seems doubly, miserably unfortunate that emotions cause chemicals to be produced in the brain that match those emotions, and that we in turn can become addicted to those chemicals thus making it all the more difficult to quit our over-the-top trips.
“There’s a chemical that matches every emotional state that we experience. And the moment that we experience that emotional state in our body or in our brain, the hypothalamus immediately assembles the peptide and then releases it through the pituitary into the bloodstream. The moment it makes it into the bloodstream, it finds its way to different centers or different parts of the body.”
Dr. Candace Pert
And sad but true, shocking numbers of us feel so bored or so average that we’re just happy to have a heightened sense of aliveness, even if it does come in the form of rage or hate or desperation. The feeling of a chemical rushing through our bodies and stirring within us something out of the ordinary and spurring us to glorious or malevolent action lifts us to real or imagined extraordinariness. And once we get a taste of the thrill we’re dogs chasing our tails. The emotions happen, the chemicals happen, we dig the rush, and we seek situations that cause the emotions.
“The thing that most people don’t realize is that when they understand that they are addicted to emotions, it’s not just psychological. It’s biochemical.
“We bring to ourselves situations that will fulfill the biochemical craving of the cells of our body by creating situations that meet our chemical needs. And the addict will always need a little bit more in order to get a rush or a high of what they’re looking for chemically. So my definition really means that if you can’t control your emotional state you must be addicted to it.
“Think about this. Heroin uses the same receptor mechanisms on the cells that our emotional chemicals use. It’s easy to see then that if we can be addicted to heroin, then we can be addicted to any neural peptide, any emotion.”
Dr. Joseph Dispenza
Why, oh why must this be a part of our construction??? The What the Bleep folks don’t spoon feed the answer, but from what I can tell it has to do with those pesky primitive survival mechanisms we’ve had for 350,000 years, i.e. if we weren’t emotional about being pursued by perceived predators, we might be dinner. And if love was only intellectual we’d probably not bother with something as peculiar as procreation. And just for grins, if we got past that, we’d probably find no good reason to coddle our offspring. OK, you get the idea: it would be the end of the human drama.
The Secret’s layers of inspirational counsel build to a pep rally fever pitch by its end, and we’re thrust back into the real world elated with knowledge that everything will miraculously work itself out because “you are the master of the Universe. You are the heir to the kingdom. You are the perfection of Life.” Whoa there!
What the Bleep manages a pleasant mix of elation and reality. By the time the credits roll, we’ve seen that we have more power over ourselves, our lives and what we perceive as our world than we’d understood prior to watching the flick. But we also see that it’s going to be a bitch to rewire our circuit board. At least we know it’s possible and why and how…
“Who is in the driver’s seat when we control our emotions or we respond to our emotions? We know physiologically that nerve cells that fire together wire together. If you practice something over and over, those nerve cells have a long-term relationship. If you get angry on a daily basis, if you get frustrated on a daily basis, if you suffer on a daily basis, if you give reason for the victimization in your life, you’re rewiring and reintegrating that neural net on a daily basis and that neural net now has a long-term relationship with all those other nerve cells called an ‘identity.’
“We also know that nerve cells that don’t fire together not longer wire together. They lose their long-term relationship because every time we interrupt the thought process that produces a chemical response in the body, every time we interrupt it, those nerve cells that are connected to each other start breaking the long-term relationship.
“When we start interrupting and observing, not by stimulus and response and that automatic reaction, but by observing the effects it takes, then we are no longer the body-mind conscious emotional person that’s responding to its environment as if it is automatic.”
Dr. Joseph Dispenza
What The Bleep Do We Know!? website: http://www.whatthebleep.com/
What The Bleep Do We Know!? script, courtesy of the WWW’s beloved Drew:
Dr. Joseph Dispenza interviewed on Quantum Factor (video):
The currently sadly lacking The Secret website: http://thesecret.tv/index.html