Renaissance was referring to the mind as a series of automatic thoughts. I'm saying that thoughts like these have no inherent power.
Well, they obviously have power over Renaissance, or s/he wouldn't describe them as an "affliction" and solicit advice on how to be free of them. Whether the power is "inherent" is a matter of semantics and probably of little help to Renaissance.
For a thought to be powerful first you have to give it the energy.
That's a bit like saying: For a man to be powerful, first he has to breathe.
I mean that it's a given.
Everyone breathes and everyone gives power to the mind.
No one can avoid giving power to the mind because, as even ET admits, conceptual thought is a necessary stage in human evolution.
Children, especially, expend immense amounts of energy worrying over trifles and in this way their mind acquires a powerful reservoir of negative energy - fear, anxiety, etc - by the time they become adults.
No one can escape this process, so as a general observation it's true to say that the mind has great power.
The only way one could argue that the mind has no power, would be if everyone was conscious enough to be free of the mind's power.
Sadly, that's true of only a minute percentage of human beings. The rest are unconscious - locked into suffering caused by the power of the human mind. They can't escape. They have no choice, because choice implies consciousness.
Of course, they have the possibility of becoming conscious, but again, that's an option that only a tiny fraction of humanity even troubles to investigate.
Belief is the fuel. For a thought to be powerful first you have to give it the energy. It is powerful only when you believe it.
Again, I have to disagree with you.
There's a saying in psychiatric circles: Neurotics build castles in the clouds, psychotics live in them.
Neurotics are capable of distinguishing between imagination and consensus reality, whereas psychotics actually believe their delusional thoughts.
However, the neurotic can be just as tormented by his fears, even though he knows full well that they have no reality - he doesn't believe in them.
The reason for this is that his fear is a reaction to the energy charge that the thoughts carry and not to their ontological status (real/unreal, true/untrue).
This energy charge is
objectively real, whether or not he chooses to believe in it.
So the key to ending his suffering is not for him to believe or disbelieve in the thought, indeed, refusing to believe in something that's patently real amounts to a form of denial.
He needs to understand
exactly what a thought-form is and why it has power over him. Then he needs to apply that knowledge to de-energise the thought-form.
I tried to explain the basic mechanisms of thought-forms and how to de-energise them in these threads:
http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth ... php?t=2637
http://eckhart-tolle-forum.inner-growth ... 4734#14734
But thoughts are
real and to conquer their power we must understand their nature and agenda and not simply pretend that they have no reality.
That was the basic error that Mary Baker Eddy fell into when she founded the Christian Science movement on her mantra that: "Illness is not real".
The thought-forms that create illness are absolutely real on their own level.