Tuesday, April 21, 2015

31. Who is bound to whom?????


Once a Guru was taking his disciples to the near by village temple. On the way they had to cross a market-place. Guru was a practical man and he taught his disciples showing them real life situations. 

The group saw a man pulling his buffalo by a rope. Guru went up to the man and said, “Stop!” 

He then turned to his disciples and said, “Now all of you stand before this man and the buffalo I am going to teach you something today.” 

The man looked at the Guru and thought the Guru might reveal some insight which he can also imbibe. He wondered what the Guru would teach using him and his buffalo. 

Guru asked his disciples, “Who is bound to whom? Is the buffalo bound to this man or is this man bound to this buffalo?” 

After a short time of silence the disciples said, “As we saw the man pulling the buffalo by rope it is obvious that the buffalo is bound to this man. This man is the master of this buffalo and it has to go with him wherever he drags it to. So the man is the master and the buffalo is the subordinate.”

Then the Guru said, “So you all agree that the buffalo is bound to this man, right. Now look what happens.”

Guru looked at the man and said, “Hand over the rope to me.” The man eager to know what might really happen handed the rope to the Guru. 

Once the rope was in the hands of the Guru, he let the buffalo lose and the buffalo started to escape and ran away. The man who could not believe what happened instantly ran behind the buffalo.

Looking at the man running behind the buffalo Guru told his disciples, “Look, the scene has completely changed see now who is bound to whom! The buffalo is no more interested to be with this man whom you all said was the master. In fact the buffalo is escaping from him.” 

The buffalo had picked up the speed and was quickly out of sight. The man exhausted came back and was very angry. He asked the Guru, “What kind of practical learning is this? My buffalo is gone.”

But the Guru was busy explaining the practical learning to his disciples. He said, “Exactly similar is the situation with regard to your mind. The entire nonsense in the way of bitter memories, fears, anxieties, grief, guilt and much much more that you are carrying inside is not interested in you just like that buffalo. You are interested in it, you are keeping it together somehow and because of it you are restless. You are dragging it towards you just like that man who was pulling the buffalo with his rope. The moment you let them out and become disinterested with them they will start disappearing; just like that buffalo.” 

The Guru did teach a lesson on how powerful our attachments to unwanted and uncalled for matters could be.  The more we get attached to those unwanted matters the more we have to suffer because of them. Suppose we fail to achieve something we instantly search for the reason and mostly blame ourselves for it. There is no necessity to identify with the failure, as failure is just an event. If we have the mindset to learn from the failure and move forward we have achieved a lot……What say? 

Monday, March 16, 2015

30. Advantages of Transcending beyond the Realm of Mind………….


A Spiritual seeker with a little knowledge of the scriptures knows that he is not the body or the mind but the Self. The enquiry of the self leads to a series of thought process in his mind. “I am neither the Senses, nor the Mind and Ego; I am beyond all that I am Pure Consciousness.”  So the body and mind is not what we think we are, other living beings like animals do not have a thought to transcend beyond the mind and this is how we humans are a shade better than them. The true potential of human beings is not in the power of mind but in the thought to transcend the mind and reach a higher state of Pure Consciousness. This is the state in which we are aligned with divinity, the source from which we descended. We are in chaos until we reach this state; the mayhem is between what we are and our true nature. This rift is the cause of the stress and strain in us. Once we are aware that we are that Pure Consciousness we are not inclining to judge our past and worry about the future. Thus we automatically become stress free.      

By not venturing a lot into the past and future if we do our duty (Karma) of today we are entitled to enjoy every moment and will reap the benefit of the present. Our mind is tensed and confused when the work of the present is compared to the past or is worried about the work of the future. Our mind is what we are. Our attitude determines the altitude of our presentation in any chosen field. If we are proud of doing a great work, we are also guilty if the work done is shabby. The feel of guilt and pride are like the two sides of the same coin.

In Bhagavad-Gita Lord Krishna explains to the whole world a secret of how “to live with the mind and yet to transcend it”. The secret of Karma Yoga is that it teaches how to perform action rather than to tell what attitude one should have while performing it. It is not right to avoid action but we have to adopt the right attitude to perform it.

An example will make us understand better. Let us say an archer aims his arrow at the target. When he aims at the target without any expectation in his mind just for the fun of it the arrow reaches the desired destination. The whole act is so natural. But when the archer’s mind is fixed on a gold medal then the game becomes a stressful. An unknown fear creeps in to his mind. His mind is no more fixed on the target completely. While one part of his mind is drawn towards the medal to be won, the other part is trying to aim at the target. This is where the mind is in duality. There is a gold medal at stake and his mind is now more concerned with the praise that he is going to get if successful than the target. In such a situation his talent suffers. There is division, confusion and affliction in the mind. This is the nature of our mind. Instead of being in the present it swings either to the past or into the future but it fails to understand that to live in the present means to enjoy what is served to the extreme. Expecting the results of action means to swing to the future that is yet to come.

Lord Krishna says, “Sacrifice the fruits of your action to Me.” Thus the fear and tension of the result does not hamper our performance. Fear and tension are for those who dwell in the mind by carrying their ego into every action they perform. They are slaves of their own egoistic mind. We should practice detached attachment for this is the only way to attain consistency and contentment. The world which we are living offers us variety, novelty and diversity but no stability. We can see that wherever there is stability there is consistency contentment and this makes us look for a stable life rather than seeking pleasurable pursuits. Thus surrendering the fruits of our action to the Lord in the way of "Iswararpanam" (offering to Absolute) by just thinking "Na Idam Mama" (this is not mine) is the right way. This is eternal TRUTH.

Friday, February 13, 2015

29. Edgy Mind is one of the reasons to create Phobia in us…..


There is no object or a thing in this entire universe that can induce fear in us if we are not mindful of it. It is our edgy mind that projects the fear of an object. There is no ominous situation in the environment which should cause fear in us, yet we cannot free ourselves from fears, negative feelings, and uncertainty. This is one of the influences of phobia. Phobia is non objective reality.

It is true that we are afraid of death which is inevitable. We know that it snatches away all our earthly desires, affection, ownerships. But the fear of what happens after death is the false fear which hunts us and makes us look ungainly. This fear of imagination takes away passion to live a happy life when alive.

Fear is based on something that we predict may happen in the future, it is clearly a mental process which attempts to foresee the future, the reason of fear is a projection of our mind. For instance, we may be afraid of falling, but once we fall, we are afraid of hitting the ground, once we hit the ground, we are afraid of a worse injury, once there is a worse injury due to fall, we are afraid of the pain and the consequences of not being able to work for some days or become disabled etc, etc., So we can conclude that fear is always based on something that which has not happened yet. Hence it is more of a fantasy of our mind rather than fact.

When these fantasies go out of control it grows into something called phobia, it only means that the mind is needlessly exaggerating the situation. In such circumstances our mind is off the track and starts to view a cat as a lion. The remedy to phobia is not medication it is important to back the edgy mind to normal by calming it down through meditation or being extrovert or social with all.

Two commuters sat in a compartment of a train; one was an elderly person and the other a young handsome man. Just to start up a conversation, the young man asked the elderly man,

“What’s the time, sir?”

The elderly man with a frown face responded: “I know this is how you youngsters start it all. I will tell you the time and as the train moves along, you will start talking on politics then the discussions will move on to movies. You name some stupid flicks and talk about the hero and heroine. Then after that topic is over you talk of share market. And then you would like to share breakfast with me. This will get us to become friends. That is not all; by the time we reach our destination we would become extremely close. Then naturally, I would invite you home for a cup of coffee. You would come to my home and meet my daughter. And then you would propose to marry her”.

The young man was baffled did not utter a word.

After a little pause, came the final punch from the elderly man, “Let me tell you frankly now itself that I am NOT going to give my consent to the marriage!”

Young man who was cool all the while wanted to pull the leg of the elderly man so he asked the reason for his non-approval to marry his daughter.

Much to the irritation of the young man, the elderly person replied: “How could a man with good sense give his daughters hand to a man who doesn’t even own a watch?”

This is in fact the way our mind behaves if it is afraid of false fears based on sheer doubts, suspicions, assumptions, hypothesis.……etc., etc.,

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

28. Is it a Monkey Mind …….. Really???


For all the crazy things that put us into trouble or make us unhappiness the blame is put on the mind. Amazingly for all the reasonable things which bring peace and make us happy it is the same mind which is responsible. The mind is always jumping from one topic to another and sometimes it wanders aimlessly and for doing all this we brand it a “Monkey Mind” Well, maybe there are reasons for calling it so, since it does not listen to anyone and does all the decision making by itself.

The mind has in it the memories and feelings, consequently it has its own likes and dislikes. These likes and dislikes are deep hidden in the memory since many many births; they resurface again and again when they are refreshed. Embedded in those likes and dislikes could be the downfall or ascent of an individual. Our past karmas could be the architect for the mind to pamper the likes and rebuff the dislikes. Seriously then mind is a puppet in the hands of karma which decides if the sprouted new thought is good or bad for it. This could be the reason for some thoughts to bring smile on our face the moment it appears while some make us miserable as it may hurt our ego.  

Our five senses evoke the memories of time long past, even those buried deep in unconscious part of our mind to stir us emotionally. They invoke in us the desires, anxiety, intentions, temptations, the feelings of love and hate, the feelings of euphoria and despondency. When we stir our consciousness, the impurities otherwise settled at the bottom rise to the surface and muddle our thinking. At this time, the mind acts as monkey. To have coherent thoughts we must prevent ingress of thought through our senses. It would help us keep calm and concentrate on whatever we are doing. In all it is our strong hold on likes and dislikes which make our life miserable, in such a case why should we blame the mind? We humans are fortunate lot to have a master over the mind called Buddhi (Intellect) which is the faculty of discrimination. All we need to do is use the intellect in making friendship with mind instead of calling it a “Monkey”. 

If mind is given the status of a best friend it can help us focus transforming the work we do into an art of excellence. A work becomes an art of excellence if there are no distractions while doing it. Concentration is achieved if there is a calm mind without distractions and such a mind can easily apprise us of our goals and clarify to us the priorities. It is the calm mind which can provide a relaxed body. A friendly mind does not conspire with the ego to snub the intellect, it make way to deliver clarity in every thoughts. With a clear thought the work we do is highly appreciative. With work which is of high quality there is union with the Divinity. In other words, to ensure the union with Absolute (Yogah) the work we do has to be excellent (Karmasu Kaushalam) and for the work to be excellent our mind has to be cool and friendly. ……………Am I right?????