Self Help

Don't Believe Everything You Think Why Your Thinking Is The Beginning & End Of Suffering - Joseph Nguyen

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Matheus Puppe

· 13 min read

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Here is a summary of the key points in the introduction and Chapter 1:


  • This book will help you find the answers to life’s biggest questions and discover lasting peace, joy, and fulfillment. The truth lies within you.

  • Don’t just read for information, read for insight and wisdom. Look beyond the words for the feeling of truth.

  • Approach with an open mind and heart. The truth is simple yet profound.

Chapter 1: The Journey to Finding the Root Cause of Suffering

  • Psychological and emotional suffering is being addressed, not physical pain.

  • We all want to be free of suffering and experience peace and joy.

  • Religion, psychology, and self-help provide temporary relief but not permanent freedom.

  • To be free of suffering, we must find the root cause and address it.

  • Suffering is a deeply personal and complex issue with many potential causes.

  • The author’s journey to find the cause began with intense suffering and led to discovering the Three Principles.

  • The Principles point to the spiritual nature within all people as the source of thought, feelings, and beliefs.

  • Understanding the Three Principles leads to freedom from suffering by revealing its root cause.

  • We all experience pain and difficulties in life, but suffering is optional. Pain is unavoidable, but how we react to events determines whether we suffer or not.

  • According to Buddha, when something negative happens, two arrows come our way - the physical pain of the event (first arrow), and the emotional pain from our reaction (second arrow). The first arrow we can’t control, but the second arrow of suffering is optional.

  • Suffering comes from our own thinking and perception of events, not the events themselves. Two people can experience the same event but have completely different reactions based on their thinking.

  • We each live in our own perceptions of reality formed by our thoughts, not an objective reality. Our feelings come from our thinking about events, not the events themselves.

  • The root cause of human psychological suffering is our own thinking. By changing our thinking, we can change our experience of life and end suffering.

  • The key is to stop overthinking and live from a place of inner stillness and presence. When we stop our habitual thought patterns, we experience our natural state of happiness and peace.

The summary emphasizes that while pain is inevitable, suffering stems from our reactions which we can change. By recognizing our thinking creates our experience, we can end suffering by changing our relationship to our thoughts.

You make an excellent point about the difference between thoughts and thinking. Here are the key takeaways from your explanation:

  • Thoughts are effortless and naturally arise in the mind, while thinking requires effort and engaging with those thoughts. We can’t control the thoughts that pop up, but we can control whether we actively think about them.

  • Thinking is actively engaging with our thoughts and is the root cause of psychological suffering. Just observing a thought come and go does not cause suffering.

  • Positive thoughts arise naturally from our inner state of peace, love and joy. They are not created through forceful thinking.

  • In the money visualization exercise, an initial thought about income arose quickly. But when asked to think further about it, unhelpful judgments and doubts arose causing negative emotions.

  • Thoughts themselves are neutral. But over-thinking and engaging negatively with thoughts creates inner turmoil. The key is not getting wrapped up in prolonged thinking about any thoughts that arise.

  • Learning to observe our thoughts from a detached place, without judging or obsessively analyzing them, is a powerful skill for inner well-being.

  • We do not need to “think positive” in order to feel positive emotions like joy, love, and bliss. These are our natural states of being.

  • Thinking actually takes us away from our natural state. The more thinking we have going on, the more stressed, anxious, or negative we feel.

  • When we feel extremely positive emotions like joy and love, we often have little to no thinking going on in that moment.

  • The intensity of our negative emotions corresponds to how much thinking we have going on. It’s not the content of our thoughts but the act of thinking itself that causes suffering.

  • Our mind is like a “thought-o-meter” - the more thoughts per minute, the more we go into the “red zone” of stress and negative emotions. The fewer thoughts, the more we experience positive natural states.

  • We have direct access to positive emotions through our connection to Infinite Intelligence. Thinking blocks this connection, taking us away from our natural state of being.

  • We don’t need to think positive, we just need to think less and be present to access our innate joy, love, and peace. Reducing thinking connects us to our true nature.

It is not possible to completely stop thinking, but we can reduce the time we spend caught up in thinking. When we become aware that thinking is the root cause of our suffering, it helps us detach from it and let it settle on its own.

Like dirty water that becomes clear when left to sit, our minds naturally return to clarity when we stop stirring up thinking. Fighting thinking makes it worse, like struggling in quicksand.

Oscillating between thinking and non-thinking is normal. We can’t control it, but we can minimize thinking. Knowing we can always return to inner peace and that it’s never lost gives us comfort. Simply becoming aware of when we are caught up in thinking allows it to pass and returns us to clarity. Reducing thinking creates more moments of joy, love and peace.

Here are a few key points on how to pursue goals and dreams without excessive thinking:

  • Inspired goals come from a place of passion and excitement, not desperation and lack. Focus on what genuinely inspires you.

  • Be present. When taking action on a goal, stay focused on the task at hand rather than overthinking the future outcome.

  • Trust the process. Know that inspired action will lead to inspired results, even if the path there is unknown.

  • Focus on being rather than doing. Your state of being attracts your results. Embody the feelings of already having achieved your dreams.

  • Take inspired action. Inspiration leads to inspired action. Follow your inspiration with enthusiasm and joy.

  • Let go of attachment to results. Stay open to all possibilities rather than fixating on a pre-determined outcome.

  • Replace overthinking with mindfulness and presence. When excessive thoughts arise, gently return your focus to the present moment.

  • Know your worth is never tied to achievements. You are enough just as you are, regardless of what you accomplish.

In summary, inspired goals and inspired action, rooted in the present moment, can thrive with less thinking. Trust the process and know you are always enough.

  • We create out of pure inspiration, not desperation. Creation comes from a place of wholeness and abundance, not lack.

  • Divine inspiration comes through us, not from us. It is an expansive force that makes us feel alive, whole, and filled with joy and unconditional love.

  • When we begin thinking too much about an inspired idea, we shut off the flow of inspiration and fall into doubt, anxiety, etc.

  • Goals/dreams from desperation feel heavy, draining, and obligatory. We do them to escape our current situation.

  • Goals/dreams from inspiration feel uplifting, energizing, and desired. We do them out of a desire to create and share, not get something in return.

  • We innately have infinite inspiration flowing through us. Thinking blocks this flow like a dam blocks a river.

  • To create from inspiration, don’t think about your thoughts. Let goals/dreams arise naturally without judgment.

  • Ask yourself “If I had infinite money, time, resources, what would I create?” to tap into inspiration.

The key is to create from a place of abundance rather than lack, by allowing inspiration to flow through us unblocked by overthinking. When we create from our natural state of wholeness, our goals align with our true passions.

Here are a few suggestions on what to do after experiencing peace, joy, love and fulfillment in the present moment:

  • Enjoy it! Simply bask in the feelings and sensations of being at peace. There’s no need to overthink or rush. Allow yourself to fully embody the state of presence.

  • Express gratitude. Offer thanks for being able to experience these positive states of being. Feel appreciation for all that is working in your life.

  • Set intentions. With clarity of mind, set goals or intentions for how you can continue cultivating more peace, joy, love and fulfillment. Make sure they align with your highest self.

  • Be open. Remain receptive to whatever new insights, inspiration or opportunities may arise in this state of expanded awareness. Don’t force anything, just allow things to unfold.

  • Create. Channel the energy into creative outlets - art, music, writing, dance, cooking, anything that lets you express your inner light. Follow your intuition.

  • Serve others. Look for ways, big or small, that you can be of benefit to those around you and the wider world. Compassionate action brings deep fulfillment.

  • Appreciate simplicity. In this space of contentment, the little things in life radiate beauty. Enjoy ordinary moments, be present.

  • Commit to your practice. Whatever practices help you cultivate inner peace and joy, commit to doing them regularly. Make them a priority.

  • Trust it is always available. Know that you can return to this state of being at any time, with practice. Have faith in your own inner resources.

The key is to integrate presence into your daily life, while taking inspired action from that space of wholeness. Flow with what opens up naturally, stay true to your truth. Joy expands as you share it with others!

  • There is no inherently “right” or “wrong” decision, just as there are no wrong keys on a piano. However, some decisions will lead to more pleasant outcomes than others depending on the context.

  • Rather than overthinking decisions, rely on your intuition or “gut feeling” to guide you. This inner wisdom always knows what is best for you in any given moment.

  • Trying to think through decisions logically often just causes anxiety. You likely already know deep down what you want to do.

  • Don’t look to others to confirm your decision. Follow your own inner guidance. Going against your intuition often leads to regret.

  • Your intuition is like an inner GPS, guiding you to where you need to go. Trust it will lead you to the right destination, even if the path there is unexpected.

  • Society will rarely confirm your intuitive sense until the idea is mainstream. Have courage to follow your own inner wisdom rather than external opinions.

  • In many cases, we know what action to take but are afraid to do it. Move past the fear and take inspired action.

  • By trusting your intuition over obsessive thinking, you will experience the joy, peace and love you’ve been searching for, as well as miracles.

  • We often already intuitively know what to do in life but don’t act on it due to fear or self-doubt.

  • If you are unsure of what to do, trust in your inner wisdom and intuition - it will guide you if you let it.

  • We have access to infinite intelligence and knowledge, our thinking and beliefs are the only obstacles preventing us from tapping into this.

  • To follow your intuition, be present and get into a state of “non-thinking” or flow. This aligns you with infinite intelligence/the divine.

  • In this state, miracles seem to happen, things fall into place easily. You accomplish more in less time.

  • You can’t control everything, but you can control whether you think/worry. Let go of overthinking, trust your intuition.

  • Focus on what you want, not how to get it. The “how” comes from having faith and allowing the universe to orchestrate.

  • The path only reveals itself as you walk it. Trust the process. Your inner wisdom provides guidance when needed.

  • Keep taking steps forward. Know that what you desire will come if you have faith and align with infinite intelligence through intuition.

  • Our intuition and inner wisdom (God) speaks to us all the time through thoughts and gut feelings. But we often ignore it due to fear of the unknown.

  • Intuition will guide us to take actions that seem illogical but lead to miracles and abundance. It connects us to infinite possibilities.

  • To access our intuition, we must quiet our thinking mind and enter a state of non-thinking. This allows us to tap into divine guidance.

  • Thinking creates fear and anxiety about the future. Non-thinking allows us to access our intuition which lives in the present moment.

  • Stepping into the unknown space of intuition is scary but necessary to manifest new things we haven’t experienced before.

  • We must have faith in our inner wisdom to guide us even when we can’t predict outcomes. Understanding it’s just our thinking causing fear allows the fear to fall away.

  • Creating empty space in our minds through non-thinking, questioning our beliefs, and activities like meditation allows new intuitions and ideas to enter. Space is required for creation.

  • The key is to trust our intuition, create space for it to operate, release the need to control outcomes, and have faith in being guided to take inspired action. This allows miracles to unfold.

Here is a summary of the key points about non-thinking:

  • Thinking is the root cause of all suffering. When we let go of destructive thinking patterns, we return to our natural state of peace, love, and joy.

  • We don’t live in objective reality, but rather in a perception of reality created by our own thinking. Our thoughts shape our experience.

  • Thinking is not an effect of our experiences, but rather the cause. Our thoughts create our experiences.

  • The thoughts in our minds are not facts. They are mental constructs that only have power over us if we believe them.

  • Our feelings are an innate guidance system that indicates whether we have clarity or lack understanding. Feelings invite us to deepen our truth.

  • We are in flow when we let go of thinking and align with our essence. The egoic mind causes suffering through its incessant thinking.

  • We can dissolve negative thoughts instantly just by recognizing them as thoughts. They have no substance beyond the belief we give them.

  • Non-thinking is effortless, not forced. We gently return to presence, where thinking subsides on its own.

  • Living from essence is freedom. We reclaim our power when we stop identifying with the egoic mind’s stories.

The key is to recognize thinking as the cause of suffering, and let it go by returning to presence. When we align with our true essence, we experience peace, fulfillment and flow.

Here is a suggested guide for creating a non-thinking environment:

Physical Environment:

  • Declutter your space and remove visual distractions. A cluttered space can clutter the mind.

  • Incorporate elements of nature - plants, sunlight, natural materials. Nature has a calming effect.

  • Use calming colors like blues, greens, neutrals. Avoid bright, flashy colors.

  • Play relaxing or instrumental music. Avoid music with lyrics.

  • Diffuse essential oils like lavender, bergamot, chamomile.

  • Keep lighting soft and natural.

  • Designate an area for meditation/quiet reflection.

Digital Environment:

  • Turn off notifications on your phone and computer to avoid distractions.

  • Limit time on social media/news which can trigger reactive thinking.

  • Curate your social media feeds to follow accounts that inspire/uplift you.

  • Be mindful of consumption of media - watch, read, listen to things that relax the mind.

  • Delete unused apps and declutter digital spaces.

Lifestyle Habits:

  • Build regular habits of journaling, meditation, time in nature, exercise to calm the mind.

  • Spend time with people who allow you to feel at peace. Limit time with those who create drama.

  • Eat a clean, whole foods diet to avoid spikes and crashes in energy.

  • Maintain a regular sleep routine to allow the mind to recharge.

The key is evaluating your unique environment to determine what specifically induces a calm, clear state vs. reactive thinking and making adjustments accordingly. Start with small changes to create space for non-thinking.

Here is an outline for a potential book on overcoming suffering through non-thinking:

This covers the journey of discovering that thinking is the root cause of suffering, how to stop thinking and live from a place of inner wisdom/intuition instead, what happens when you live without thinking, and how to create an environment and lifestyle conducive for non-thinking. Let me know if you would like me to expand or modify any part of the outline. I’m happy to assist further as you develop this book concept.

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About Matheus Puppe