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Beyond Wishful Thinking: The Power of Hope

In this article, Joanna Infeld explores the power and the possibility of our unique human ability to hope—and how Hope, fueled by belief and accompanied by intention and action, can be a means of transforming what may have begun as a vision, into reality.


Why Hope Is Important

Hope is the human ability to envision a positive result in any situation where the outcome is still unknown.

Mostly when we think of hope, we think of the future, as in, “I hope you get better soon,” “I hope they give me the job/promotion,” “I hope he asks me out.” But it can also refer to the past, as in, “I hope it turns out that it was not my son who broke the classroom window.” So hope can apply to anything where we don’t have certainty about its outcome, whether the past, present or future. “I hope to win,” we might say.

“High hopes” suggests there are levels to hope. The saying usually refers to a person’s promising future. Nobody, however, says, “low hopes.” Perhaps there are degrees of hope, depending on the probability of the event that is hoped for happening. Or perhaps there are levels of hope depending on the significance of the event in question. “I hope it doesn’t rain tomorrow” is one level of hope; “I hope he asks me to marry him” is quite another.

In Polish there is a saying that hope is the mother of the stupid, indicating that hope is not necessarily anchored in reality and can deceive a person into harboring false hopes. But without hope we would all become despondent and depressed. So perhaps to hope is not such a stupid thing to do after all. Hope is also the mother of the optimist and the believer. If you can envision something, it can happen. Hope allows a person to create images in one’s mind. Images formed by the imagination have an energetic component and depending on the strength of a person’s hope, these images can become their future reality.

Developing Hope As An Asset

It has been said that for an illumined man to think it is to create it. An illumined man (or woman) will add potency and action to the imagery to make their vision come true and will meditate to reinforce his (or her) projection into the future.

In the mouths and minds of the uninitiated, hope is nothing more than a wish.

But in the mouth, mind and heart of the developed person, it is a lance of power.

Hope is an important component in the Law of Attraction working—it is an attraction or a beam of power energetically sent towards a target with the intention of bringing that target closer to home and making it become a reality. Rather than being an ethereal, unreal concept, in the realms of energy hope is a very practical discipline.

In practicing hope, one can indeed make one’s dreams come true.

With development hope becomes a lance of power, rather than an empty phrase. When saying, “I hope you get better soon,” one can send one’s energy with a petition to the healing powers, which can help another person get better sooner. When using one’s power this way it is important not to hope to the detriment of another person or group. So to say, “I hope you win” is to hope someone else loses. Best to say and think, “I hope the best man/woman/player wins.”

Hope can help a person in difficult times. It suggests change is possible. No matter how difficult a situation, it will pass and can be replaced by something better. Personal hope calls for action; hope directed towards others calls for support. Always hope is associated with energy directed at an intention and a result.

An acronym for hope could be Human Opportunity Powered by Energy.

What Hope Is Capable Of

In his book, Man’s Search for Meaning, Viktor Frankel describes his experiences while being incarcerated in several Nazi concentration camps, including Auschwitz, during World War Two. He noticed that those most likely to survive their ordeal were the people who hoped for a better future and believed they would be liberated. Their hope sustained them and helped them weather successfully the stress, hunger, fear and human misery generated by the circumstances of camp life. Hope is an antidote to depression, because it points to the fact that whatever the circumstance a person finds themselves in, it can always get better.

There are many documented cases of medical “miracles” where people pronounced “hopeless cases” with terminal illnesses and life-threatening conditions would unexpectedly recover and return to good health. “Where there is life, there is hope” the saying goes. The word "hopeless" should be struck from the dictionary. A person can always engender hope into any situation; it is a matter of being prepared to “look on the bright side” and hope for the best. It is essential not to do so in a vague, undefined sort of way, but with definition and power. The more specific details a person can bring to the situation they hope for, the more power they can add to their image of the future and the more likely their hope will become a reality.

Making Hope More Effective

When you say to someone, “I hope you get better soon,” in your mind, do you leave the task of recuperation entirely up to them, or do you send them a little bit of your own energy, consciously and deliberately, with which they might regain their strength that much faster and more effectively?

The future is not fixed, and as long as it remains in a fluid state (in other words, it is not yet solidified by becoming the present), it can be influenced by our thoughts and our hope. “Hope springs eternal,” another saying goes. Hope is like a fishing line, cast to the future.

The difference between a successful angler and one who throws the line randomly and wishes for the best is experience and having developed an intuition about the habits of fish. Hope becomes reality when we apply our mind, soul and senses to power our desires and follow them up with action. A person who hopes to catch fish but never goes out with their fishing rod will never have their hopes come true.

Sometimes it is better not to know what is considered impossible, so that our range of perceived possibilities does not become limited. In the 70s there was a group of Rumanian gymnasts who awed the world with their abilities and strength. Nadia Comăneci won five gold medals, three silver and one bronze at the Montreal and Moscow Olympics in 1976 and 1980. She also won a number of gold and silver medals in European and World Championships, and there were others who followed in her footsteps. When interviewed, their coach explained that he had never told the girls what the world records were, so they could not feel limited by the achievements of others.

When people say, “You can’t,” or “It cannot be done,” don’t believe them! Find out for yourself. What might be indeed impossible for one person, might be an easy target for someone else. Of all the energetic qualities, hope is the miracle worker. So when people say, “Don’t get your hopes up,” perhaps ignore them and always have your hopes up and ready to spring into action!

Hope gives us an outlook on the future—we hope things can improve and be better. “Let’s hope for the best,” we might say. But it might be that we are simply hoping in a passive way, while we await the outcome tomorrow might bring or we wish someone else would bail us out of a difficult situation. When we hope, are we attempting to actively influence the future? If you hope for longevity, for example, do you exercise and eat well?

Longevity is possible. In the book, What Makes Olga Run? Bruce Grierson describes a woman in her 90s who competes as an athlete within her age category and has many gold medals to show for it. Hoping for a long, healthy life is a very practical pursuit. Jeanne Calment, who died in 1997, lived 122 years and 164 days. She was the longest living person on record. There are stories of a man who lived in China—Li Ching-Yuen—who supposedly had lived either 197 or 256 years, depending upon which account of his life one reads. It seems that the human body was made to last; as long as we treat it with respect and give it what it needs to flourish, we, too, can hope for long, healthy lives.

False hope can be a denial of our own power, but in the true meaning of the word hope is accompanied by action and intent.

Exercises in Hope

Finally, here are 3 ways that you can explore how hope can help your life and the lives of others around you.

Exercise 1 Write down what you hope for: for you, for your family, for your country, for the world. (When you hope for someone else, make sure it is something they would hope for, for themselves. Otherwise, you could be hoping against their own wishes and desires.) Make this a regular practice.

What do you hope for in one year, two years, five years? If you are clear about what you hope for, it has much more of a chance to become a reality. If you write it down and look at it often, you are giving it definition and powering it with your energy.

Exercise 2 Every time you use the word hope, imagine a lance of power emitting from the area of your third eye (in the middle of the forehead) into the future. Send the image of what it is you hope for into the future—to a time when you would want your projection to come true. Exercise 3A Meditation Project five years ahead. Now break it into five steps. What do you hope for, for each of the five years?

I "hope" this has inspired you to use hope in a far greater way in your life, and realize that it is a blessing that will always assist. It can radically transform the way you are if you allow it. So use it wisely and realize that hope is a magnificent tool that is yours to develop—if you want to.


If you enjoyed this article, you may also want to listen to this audio poem about Hope and watch this video post that asks the questions "What and Why is Hope?"

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