Ep. 4.14 Mantras vs. Affirmations vs. Declarations

On this week’s episode of the AU podcast, we talk about the differences between mantras, affirmations, and declarations. Which one should you use, if any? Why are they different? Can any of them help bring us closer to God? Words have power! This week we learn how to tap into that power in a way that aligns with Christianity.

4:23-4:32 Definition of declarations

5:59-6:11 Words have power!

10:19-10:37 What Jesus says about us

12:46-13:14 Who does this recognize the power of?

14:08-14:21 Truth based on what God’s revealed

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Hello, and welcome to today's episode
of the Authentic Uprising podcast.
I'm your host Jill Simons, and I'm
so excited to grow in the radical
art of standing in what god
says about you with you today.
The show is a place where we
pour into the sense of who got
who we are and how we can live
more in the freedom that he
has for us every
single day.
Hello and welcome to today's episode of
the Authentic Uprising podcast.
As always. I'm your
host Jill Simons,
and I am going to be chatting
with you today about something
that I hear so much disagreement,
misinformation, confusion about
both in the Church out of it.
And that is the question of
whether or not Christians can and
should, use things like like mantras,
affirmations, declarations,
things like that.
So that's what we're
gonna get into today.
We're gonna be talking about
where Christians should land on
this issue and then just some
practical tips for applying what
we're talking about
to your life.
So as always, it's really helpful
to get clarity about terms
before you try and discuss. You know,
should I do this? Should I not do this?
There's a lot of different
terms that get thrown around
interchangeably when they're
not actually interchangeable.
A mantra is something that is used
in primarily Hindu meditation,
but you might have versions of
mantra used in Buddhist meditation,
as well, that is meant to repeat
the mantra over and over and over again,
and it's too empty your mind. So
that's kind of the goal of a mantra.
Is to bring... Have something to
bring your focus back to over
and over again to empty your mind
out so that the goal of those
forms of meditation being an empty
mind so that you are able
to really not be present to
yourself and your own thought so
that you can be absorbed
in to something greater.
And so that is a very specific
spiritual practice in a different
world religion than Christianity.
Affirmations is something that's
so widely talked about
throughout the self-help space.
And it's typically, you know, let's
repeat this phrase on a regular
basis because we
want to believe it.
Let's say this over and over
again because we want to act more
like we believe it, live
more, like, we believe it.
We want to actually
believe it.
And so it's really something
that's used as like a self-help
tool in order to get your mind
to cooperate with a belief that
you're looking to believe
in the long run.
And again, typically with affirmations,
it's very self-motivated where it's...
Like I said, an aspect of self-help where you are deciding,
I would like to
believe this thing.
I would like to believe that
I'm an athletic person,
I would like to believe that my
earning potential is unlimited
maybe but also some you know,
those could be things that could
seem very self-centered, but it
could also be something, you know,
more altruistic like I am
a very generous person.
And people repeat these affirmations
to help bring this into
the truth in their lives. Or
that's kind of the the base
principle of affirmations. I think
that from both those definitions,
it's probably becoming clear,
neither one of those is really
spot on with what with how
Christians are called to use our
words and use our minds. And so
there's a different term that
I like to use to talk about statements
that we repeat on a regular basis,
and that is declarations. When I
was going through formation,
that was how it was talked about. And declarations, in contrast
to mantras and affirmations,
declarations are not about emptying
your mind and they're not about you
exerting your will to make something true.
Declarations are about agreeing
and stepping into agreement
with things that
are already true.
So this is very much a an energy
of cooperating with the truth
and living in reality. And if you are,
you know, partake in any media,
mainstream media right now,
you know that there is actually
something pretty special about
living in reality right now
because it's not a given in our
society. I will leave it at that.
I won't elaborate anymore, but
there are a lot of people that
are really wanting to go kind
of this affirmation route of
I wanna create what
the reality is.
I wanna say something to
myself and believe it,
and that's how I'm
gonna live my life.
A declaration on the other hand
is using really that same power
and that's what I want to mention
with both mantras and animations
and declarations, all three. All
three of them do work to a certain
extent because of a few key
principles that are one hundred
percent in keeping with
Christian theology.
And that is that one, God
has given us free will,
so we are able to direct that
free will through our words and
through our repeated actions to
bring about a certain end that
we are reaching for because he
has given us real ability to
choose our own adventure, to
really choose who we wanna be,
what we wanna believe
and how we wanna live.
And the other thing is that
words have tremendous power.
And we see this through
God's use of words,
and then also how he
empowers us with words.
And so of course in creation,
you have the Lord speaking,
the world into existence
in first John,
it talks about or I'm sorry
in the gospel of John.
It talks about how Jesus is the Word,
and the Word was with God.
And so the very person of our
Savior is called the Word because
he is in existence with the Father,
spoken into the world to change things.
And then we look at you know,
what's the primary artifact we
have maybe artifact isn't
the correct word what's the primary
kind of connection that we have
available to everyone with God.
That's his word, the Word
of God which is the Bible.
And so clearly, it's a recurring theme
that words are immensely powerful.
And so it's really foolish to throw
this to the side and just say,
oh, you know, what we
say doesn't matter.
This is also extremely scriptural for
us as people because the examples
that I pulled out are really talking
about God's words, but then you have,
you know, the example from Proverbs
where it talks about, you know,
that your tongue is like the rudder
of a very large ship and
it really directs where you're
going to go. What you speak.
Both over yourself and
over other people.
And so these all of these
aspects are coming together,
creating a lot of confusion
and I think that that's really
what the devil wants, loves
about this topic is that he can
really keep Christians from
stepping into the fullness of this
power of our own words as long
as terms are not clear and
things get conflated with things that
are obviously not Christian.
So as long as people are thinking
that a declaration and a mantra
are the same thing, we can keep
people from really using the power
of declarations to come into
agreement with what God has said,
what God is already doing.
And so that's why I'm really
passionate about this topic,
and why at Pink Salt Riot,
the majority of our products include
some kind of declaration right on them.
We have, you know, our line
wristbands where there's a hidden
declaration written on the inside
that you can flip it see and,
you know, we have all of our
charms that have hidden declarations
small declarations on them.
And the whole idea is not that
you just wear them
It's that you will actually reread those
words and say them on a regular basis.
Not because you have the power
and you create reality and you
are the genesis of
your own universe.
But because you can do so much
more in Christ when you are
cooperating with Christ. If
you think about if you've ever
gone through any kind of like
safety training for white water
rafting or open sea fishing or
any kind of like more dangerous
water activities,
and they really,
like trained you on how to be
rescued and receive help.
The number one number one
thing is don't struggle.
Don't fight the person
trying to rescue you,
cooperate come into agreement with the fact
that they are trying to save you.
This exactly the situation
in our faith life,
come to agreement with the fact
that Jesus is trying to save you.
He is trying to get you to
the place where you're going to be
saf,e cared for, and protected,
but how often do we fight him?
And it's not that Jesus is not strong enough
to rescue us. But he's also...
He he has told us
time and time again,
He's not gonna rescue
us against our will.
And so if you are fighting
fighting fighting,
I don't want to come into
agreement with anything that Jesus
says about me is I think
the primary block for Chris.
A lot of Christians are very comfortable
with what Jesus says about you.
Jesus is, you know, loves you, wants
the best for you, wants me to serve you,
etcetera. Fantastic.
We need that.
That's very important and
I don't wanna denigrate that.
But I think where a lot of us
get caught up in struggling with
Jesus as he tries to rescue us
is around this idea of coming
into agreement with what he
says about us personally,
that's a whole kind of
basis of this podcast.
Is how do we actually come into
agreement with what God says about us.
And one of the most powerful tools
we have to do that is declarations.
When you use a declaration, you
can take something just right
out of Scripture if that's most
comfortable to you, fantastic.
That is something that obviously very
safe, very trustworthy worthy you know,
there's so many things that God
says specifically about each
of us in Scripture. And so we've put
together actually a downloadable
of affirmations straight from
Scripture that you can download
and use for your own use and
the links to that are in Youtube
description and our show notes
on the podcast so that you can
have somewhere to start. A list
of declarations of what God
says about you that you can repeat
to yourself on a regular basis,
not to make something
true that's not,
but so that you can cooperate and step
into something that is already true.
You can think about taking those
few moments whenever in the day,
this works out best to
include in your life,
but it's great in the morning if
you can to take a couple deep
breaths and even bring to mind
that image if it's helpful of
floating in the water, and you
can fight and scream and tread
water and freak out
that's allowed,
but you can also take up that
position of the Beloved Disciple
at the Last Supper and
just relax into Jesus.
You can let yourself rest in his arms,
the fact that you're floating,
you're in the water,
but he has got you.
And then you can repeat several
of these declarations,
one of these declarations,
whatever really resonates with you
or whatever seems really
pointed like, oh,
that's the scalpel I need in my life right
now. That is exactly where the issue is.
To repeat that, and use that
to help relax into Jesus to
really excuse me let him
rescue you in that.
And so when we use declarations
as they're intended,
it's not a new age practice
like some people will tell you
because new age again is
about who has the power.
I think that that's ultimately
the number one question you
ask to discern if something is new age.
Who does this recognize the power of?
Does this recognize the power
of a force of nature that is
obviously less than God, something like
crystals or the natural elements,
things like that kind of
back to basic paganism.
Then clearly, that's not gonna
be in line with Christianity.
Does it recognize the supreme
power of the individual saying
you are the genesis
of this power?
You are the reason that this is powerful,
and it's because your will is God,
essentially in your own universe.
That's not gonna good.
That's not gonna be Christian. We
wanna stay far away from that.
And that can be kind of the area
where the affirmation energy
sits is in this idea that you
create the reality that you want.
And so you are speaking these
things to speak something into
existence versus declarations
to reiterate is us coming into
agreement, ending the struggle
against what is already
true based on what
God has revealed to us,
so another place that's maybe
a little bit more advanced to
receive a declaration from like, we
talked about you can go to the Word,
you can go to Scripture and get
excellent decorations and we've
got your starter list that you
can go to in our show notes.
We also can go to our times of
personal prayer and receive
declarations directly from God.
And you always wanna test these.
Right? You wanna test
them against God's Word.
Is this in line with
what God says.
If you are in prayer and you receive from
God, or you think that you do that,
you know, you are the most
powerful person in the universe
and you should be the person
in charge of everything.
Well, let's look, let's test that. That's
that's not true. That's not from God.
We can be wrong about what we've
received and that's why we
have these wonderful
backstops of God's word.
And other faithful Christians that
we wanna run these things past,
especially as we're
learning his voice.
And we've got a great workshop
on hearing God's voice as well
if that is something
that you wanna grow in,
and we talk a lot about how do
we test God's voice and and we
use really those two
things. God's Word,
and the witness of Faithful Christians
who already know his voice well.
And when we have tested those
things we've received and we really feel
like that's in keeping with God's
Word, those are great declarations.
There are awesome things I've
received from God in prayer that
are my daily declarations, and
they've kind of shifted to where
that makes up the bulk of
my daily declarations.
Is things that the Lord has again, like,
those scalpel words where it's just...
It's exactly what I need to address,
what is specifically wrong with me.
And I can use those things
to really work in a targeted
way on those places in my life
that I maybe have strongholds
that I haven't fully surrendered
to Jesus, that I haven't fully
come into alignment with
the truth and how I'm viewing my
myself or living my life, and it's
a really, really powerful tool.
And so in general, I really want
to kind of end this conversation,
I really want to encourage you to go
deeply into individual discernment.
On things like this and really
remember that social media and
the internet is
extremely polarizing.
And so a lot of times you have
something like this where we
have three different terms.
Maybe there's others that people
use that I'm not
familiar with,
but those are really the three
that I hear on a regular basis.
Mantra, affirmation, and declaration,
they get totally, like,
thrown around together, conflated
as exactly the same thing.
And then everybody wants to set
up camp in they are all evil,
or every single one of them
is the best thing ever.
And again, the truth coming
into alignment with the truth
requires more awareness than that.
It requires more thought than that.
To really dig through the weeds a
little like, okay. What is...
Let me take them one at a time.
What do each of these mean?
Where is the truth in this? And
this is not telling you that
you are the be all, end
all arbiter of truth.
But I am encouraging you to not just
take what's laid out in front
of you on social
media, especially.
As the Gospel because we need to
go to the Gospel as the Gospel.
And when I look at the Gospel, what's
right there written so many times.
Is Jesus sharing with us,
how we are to use our words.
How he is the Word, how we really
have the opportunity to step
into the promises that he has
for us by how we use our words.
And so therefore, we can't
throw out all of them.
And, completely get
rid of everything.
And that requires some
discomfort sometimes.
That requires being willing to actually
have deeper conversations with Jesus.
And so that is my bigger, I
think message and that I wanna
share with you in this podcast
is that it is tempting to melt
into one of the extremes. It's
very comfortable to do that.
To just say oh my gosh,
it's totally this.
And you just can kind of let go
and and stop trying very hard.
It's much more taxing but much more
fulfilling to find where in the middle,
the actual truth is based
on what God actually says.
And so that's my encouragement
to you today is to really find
people that you trust. I hope that
I can be one of them for you.
To help you if you're not
confident having these discernments
totally on your
own right now.
But because that's been a huge
kind of drive in my life is to
receive the formation to
discern these things well.
And then to share it, with
the people that I feel God calling
me to share that it with
one of which is you.
So I'm so thankful that you are here
watching and listening to me today,
and I hope that this kind of eases
your mind about using declarations,
but also helps you kind of draw
some boundaries around what
you're not going
to use as well.
Maybe mantras and affirmations fall
outside of what you wanna use.
I would completely be
supportive of that,
but it's really important to
use declarations to step into
the truth of what God says
about you and about everyone.
It might not be just things
about you that you struggle with
and that's okay too. You can
use declarations for anything
that God shares with us in his Word.
I love you all so very much.
I hope that this has been
helpful and clarifying to you.
If you still have questions, leave
them in the comments, let me know,
and I would love to address
those either in response to your
comment or in future episodes. I hope
that you guys have the best day.
I'll talk to you soon. Thank
you so much for joining me on
today's episode of the Os
authentic uprising podcast.
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