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THE OPEN HAVERSACK: Filter your mind

Rhonda Blackman

THE OPEN HAVERSACK: Filter your mind

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Many of us have been contaminated by external influences which have permeated our thoughts and actions. We have not stopped to filter the things that have an impact on our way of thinking and daily living. 
Filters are a must, for they are key components in our daily lives. They act as a sieve to remove suspended impurities that contaminate our minds, body, actions and even our equipment.
We use them continuously without a thought. We have them in our vehicles – oil, air, fuel – for without these vital components it would not be long before the vehicle ceased functioning. But what about our lives?
For health reasons we wouldn’t dream of drinking water that has not been purified in some fashion, for making such a mistake could result in serious health issues. In our homes as a safety precaution, screens are placed in windows so that air can pass through and insects that can cause potential disease may not.
It is clear that we use filters every day to protect our physical health and our possessions. But do we use filters to protect our minds? It is the human mind that determines every aspect of our reality and it’s your individual choice or choices that determine what you will or will not experience. About 88 per cent of all information that is processed in our minds comes through what is seen and heard. Therefore, what is filtered consciously and intentionally utilizes mind power and provides positive or negative outcomes.
Not being able to filter has caused our minds to become full of junk. The “well” from which we draw our strength has now become contaminated. Our moral compass has been compromised.
The printed and electronic media are well aware of this fact, and exploit it to their advantage on those who cannot filter their onslaught. We become prey to their way of thinking and buy into their agenda. We become discontented with our circumstances and jealous of others. As a result, we become consumed with greed and more and more useless to ourselves and to others.
It is the responsibility of individuals to place appropriate filters that accentuate the positive, not negative, in their lives. This is more essential as it relates to children for they are not as discerning as the adults and as such, they are more vulnerable.
Teach children from young the importance of filtering those things which might be a hindrance to their progression and development and those persons who might influence them negatively.
Do not allow yourself to become consumed with darkness just because you refused to filter the trash that entered. Remember our actions and perceptions are directly related to the filters we have put in place in our lives.
“The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is clear, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness.” (Matthew 6:22-23.) 
Be vigilant – filter it!
• Rhonda A. Blackman is an educator, National Development Scholar and former president of the Early Childhood Association of Barbados Inc.