"We remain emotionally disturbed because we believe some unrealistic and illogical thoughts originally imbibed. To become undisturbed, it is necessary that we see what irrational self-indoctrinations were and energetically and consistently work at de-indoctrination" Paraphrased from A. Ellis.
So the acid test is what is wrong with my thinking? And then what is right thinking? But there is an alternative, that is to overlay my present thinking with a philosophy of life, or two, and then the see what does not fit, and fix those areas. The problem arises is that in the modern world, nothing fits. It is the modern world that is not natural, and is changing faster that we can adapt. Something must go. Yet, without modern technology, we could not have come to this point. Perhaps it is time to figure out what right thinking really looks like.
Zeno first guideline is that we should live in accordance with Nature, worldly nature and human nature. A few days ago, I talked about human nature here. So what is worldly nature.
Nature follows a set of natural laws, gravity, Newtons, chemical, physical, electrical/magnetic, etc. We know a few of those, and likely the effect of most of the natural forces. We do not understand the cause of much, gravity, electro-magnetic, and much more. Oh well. We understand even less of the biological laws, but we know there is a natural force that drives appetites for food, sex, survival, social interaction, and the like. So we do not know the forces; how can we know right thinking? We cannot know, only test to see if it works or not. If it does not work, it is likely wrong, if it does work it might be right. If widely separated groups seem to agree, the odds of it being right increase, unless they all copied from the long lost original source, but if they have been 'tested and approved' by all these others, perhaps they are true.
The language and emphasis vary, but the ideas are common. Consider the concept that mental suffering is caused by delusions, expectations, cravings, desires, attachments, clinging, wants, greed,
aversions, and the like. We want something that the universe cannot provide, or something in the future that the universe cannot provide. There is something to the concept, regardless of what that is. If we let go of these thing we want, which are beyond what the universe can provide, our mental issues are released. It does not matter which part of the desire chain we let go of, the conceived need, the solution, the desire, the yearning, any part of the desire chain, and it all goes. It may be easier to displace the desire chain by desiring something within our sphere of influence, judgement, desires, impulse, and to do something to displace the desire group.
Action is often used as a method of replacement of thinking, desiring, or the like. Mindfulness, paying attention to what is happening, second by second, in the now, in as much detail as required, can be a means of mindfulness. It is even better if we enjoy the activity and are good at it. Those two, being good at it and enjoying it are not attached. I recall a supervisor who enjoyed being a supervisor, but was not good at it; I also recall one who was good at supervision, but not at mentoring, nor did he enjoy it. It was hell for him.
So what does this have to do with re-brainwashing? We learn via picking up from others the first time through. We can relearn better ways via education, training, reading, and the like. We are responsible for our current beliefs. We can change them at will, more or less, but may decide to make them more correct. Now that become difficult when we live is a society where commonly held beliefs are wrong; the reality is there is no god, and yet so many are pushing the god concept. Today is Christmas, and the marketing around the god concept. It is difficult to resist all the bullshit of the mob. But I am not interested in what the mob thinks, and for the most part, the mob is not interested in what I think. If you are reading this, you are not part of the mob and I thank you.