At least once a day, a critic or skeptic will reach out to me and holler something along these lines:
“Prove it, Garret.”
- “Where’s the data affirming that mental practices or coping strategies don’t cause feeling states to improve?” Do 100 percent of people who implement a mental practice or strategy feel better?
- “Where’s the research backing your assertion that circumstances, like the past, don’t cause human beings to feel a certain way?” Do those with a troubled past always feel troubled?
- “Where’s the evidence that the mind is built to self-correct?” Do small children tend to snap out of funks without effort?
- “Where’s the proof that states of mind don’t matter when it comes to performance?” Do people ever perform well while in a bad mood?
And at least once a day, my reply will be: “The brief answers above are all I’ve got. I don’t have any hard-and-fast evidence or statistics. Nor will I sanction, take part in, or rely on any study that attempts to prove these questions.”
Why is this my standard reply?
The mind is formless; it can’t be measured. So, while I can resolutely point to the spiritual ebb and flow of the human experience—how, out of our control, energy comes and goes and that’s the only thing that we’re capable of feeling—I can’t prove it because no one can prove what’s spiritual, formless, or beyond the description of words.
Here’s what I do know, however: Since forever, human beings have sought data to prove or justify what they know, deep down, is untrue. As for what is true: You FEEL it; you don’t prove it (e.g., the fact that all human beings are created equal doesn’t need to be researched). When Truth hits you square between the eyes, you just know. Hopefully, that’s good enough for you. If not, that’s okay, too.