Suppose you are asked, “Hey! Which is the nearest thing to you !” You may point out N number of things right from your cellphone or furniture or even clothes you are wearing! Very rarely, a person would give the correct answer – “My Mind is nearest to me!” The reason for this paradox is you identify yourself as “Your Mind – thoughts, feelings, emotions, responses, action…and so on.” In practice, this sounds quite obvious and natural. Still, the readers or students of Indian scriptures know very well that The Mind is the ‘object’ and not the subject! The subject is only “I” – consciousness or awareness.
You may say so what! What difference it makes if I don’t know about this analysis!
Well, it does make the difference. If you (from your point of view ‘I’) are aware that a Mind is an object, you can certainly train and control the Mind. The Mind borrows its existence from you only!
There are so many books, websites, videos, webinars on the Mind or its related topics. The professionals like the psychiatrists, psychologists, are among the busiest people as in present time people have realised the importance of the health of this most critical faculty.
It is not possible to include all information, observations, tips in one blog, however, I shall sincerely attempt to compile various useful and practical advice or suggestions I sought from multiple sources like certain scriptures, YouTube and TED lectures by prominent spiritual lecturers, in simple language.
What is Mind? You will find many different definitions. The most precise and practical definition is found in Indian scriptures. The state in which constant perceptions and projections occur is “The Mind”, the state of a fixed decision with clarity is “The Intellect”, the sense of “My Mind, my Intellect is Ego (Aham), it’s not the negative quality which is used in practice. Aham is like “Binding Agent” for all the faculties plus The Body. There is no structural difference between these three; there is only a functional difference.
Very few people remain aware of the state of their Mind without effort. Majority work under the ‘control’ of the Mind. The wise people work ‘on’ The Mind and not ‘through’ the Mind. We have often noticed that the quality of The Mind plays a vital role in its efficiency to focus and remain positive. The occurrence of negative thoughts is natural like the unwanted weed on the ground. To have positive, constructive and compassionate reviews, you have to work hard under the guidance of a Guru or by learning through lectures. If I say that we have to “Learn” to think, you will undoubtedly find it weird, but it is true! Osho had told in one of his lectures that “Note down the thoughts occurring in your mind just for five minutes and evaluate them if you can!” The quality of the Mind depends on so many factors; the most important is the home where the child is brought up, his childhood experiences, the ambience and so on.
You always take good care of the food you take to remain healthy physically, but often we neglect the “Intake” of our Mind, which cannot be ignored. Constant negative, unwanted. Worthless stuff must be avoided. It may be what you see or listen to or the company in which you spend your time.
Self- confidence is reasonable, but overconfidence on the Mind can prove disastrous. Our Mind has full capacity to ‘befool’ us very cleverly. ShriGeeta clearly states that the person who has a control on his mind is the best friend of himself and in case of vice versa, he is the worst foe of himself.
Often it is advised to speak minimum and only when required, in other words, “observe Maun – Silence!” for few minutes or hours in a week, to switch off the cellphones for some time and cultivate habit not to be too dependent on the external world. To some extent, this practice does help in getting peace for some time. The Mind survives on The Past, The Future and The Comparisons with others in The Present! It’s like a “Poultry Farm” inside which is never quiet! Due to this nature of Mind, people find it difficult to focus on their work. When a person is doing some job, the Mind hardly remains focused on the same. There is like ‘shower’ of advice from all directions to ‘do’ meditation daily to overcome the difficulty to control The Mind! you might wonder that why inverted comas on do! You cannot do anything without Mind that everybody knows! Now, what is the purpose of meditation? To quieten The Mind, for which during the time of meditation you have to learn to remain peaceful by “Going beyond The Mind” or “Not using The Mind” or remain in “No Thoughts” state. When you try to ‘do’ meditation means again, you have to use the Mind, and this exercise can never be successful!
So what is the solution! Well, there are valuable advice or instructions from the spiritual Gurus who have been practising this method for years. If you wish to learn sincerely, please have full faith in this guidance and avoid unnecessary logic which is again “The Game” of The Mind only!
Accept that your Mind receives N number of thoughts always, and the majority of them are meaningless. If you are determined to train your Mind wisely as per the guidance; you can get the best out of it.
Select a comfortable posture to sit steadily, keep the neck and back straight, don’t stretch. Close your eyes. Scan your body in Mind and suggest the self calm down completely.
During the period of meditation, imagine that you are Nobody and delete your past and stop thinking about the future, think “Nothing to do Nowhere to go!” You may say it’s easier “Said” than “done”!
You will develop this skill gradually, hence with patience, sincerely learn to practice for a few minutes daily morning. Now focus your Mind on some picture of God which you worship faithfully or “Om”. There will be thoughts naturally, remain indifferent to the thoughts, never try to avoid forcefully or else again the Mind will be active. Gradually increase the duration to the extent possible. You will observe that your breathing becomes too slow and subtle. Sit in this posture effortlessly for the time you can continue. Imagine that the contour of your body is disappearing gradually. The sense of ‘In’ and ‘Out’ will vanish. Slowly move your fingers and toes. Restore normal breathing after a few deep breaths slowly. Surrender the experience to The God. Don’t try to memorise the experience as in infinite consciousness there isn’t any repetition. The benefits of better health are bye products of meditation.
There are practical methods prescribed by the mentors to remain in the present. A great book “The Power Of Now” teaches how to stay in the present and avoid constant thinking without purpose. The author advises to focus on the activity you are carrying out and notice the response given by your senses like touch, sound, view and so on. You can chant a mantra repeatedly whenever you are free and avoid thinking or find out different options to remain busy like services, teaching, learning new skills, music, art, sports, exercise, reading and so on. The Mind has to stay active always.
Specific valuable suggestions or advice compiled have been restated below. Please note that they are to be applied concerning context and keeping in view the time and place. Wrong uses may backfire!
- While transacting in the world cultivate a habit to observe the quality of your Mind.
- Speak minimum and only when required genuinely.
- Never get entangled in arguments, we are not full-time lawyers!
- Except during interviews for a job or any contest or any crucial occasions, do not try to prove anything to anybody.
- .Never talk about your past to anybody or ask anyone about his history. People are preoccupied with thoughts regarding their future!
- Never justify your miseries. The more you feel miserable stronger is your ego.
- Cultivate High Emotion Quotient. People may or may not respond or behave as per your expectations. They have their reasons.
- Come what may never play with the peace of your Mind, which is the most crucial state for you.
- Do not give unsolicited advice to anyone or try to improve anybody.
- If anybody asks you “How are you!” Say “On the top of the world!” Irrespective of your troubles or difficulties. Suppose you are in the habit of listing out your challenges. In that case, people will avoid you next time as everybody has his problems to solve. Repeatedly ‘chanting’ physical issues affects your health adversely.
- Do not promise anything when you are too happy; you may regret it afterwards!
- Do not give an opinion for anything unless it is unavoidable.
- Get rid of the habit of complaining; people avoid the company of persons who always complain about one thing or other. If you do not arrest the habit of complaining, it becomes your habit, and you get trapped in negativity.
The crux of the entire topic always remains alert, vigilant on your Mind and at the same time keep the Mind quiet.
You should always “mind” your Mind!