How then do we become free from our thinking mind? What does this mean? Do we want this?
“Can human beings lose the density of their conditioned mind structures and become like crystals or precious stones, so to speak, transparent to the light of consciousness? Can they defy the gravitational pull of materialism and materiality and rise above identification with form that keeps the ego in place and condemns them to imprisonment within their own personality?”- Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth; Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose.
There are different names for the ‘madness’ of our thinking mind. In Hinduism they call it ‘maya’, in Buddhism they refer to it as ‘dukka’ and for Christians ‘the original sin’.
The ‘thinking mind’ is a valuable resource when we are able to harness it. It is a liability when we allow it to run wild. In other words, if we open our eyes in the morning and immediately begin our habitual ‘thought pattern’ which may be something like “I have to get this done, then do this, I can’t believe my wife said this, what is my husband thinking, will I get there on time, damn my knee hurts, I have to prepare for….”.
In this stream of ‘thinking’ where is our focus? Is it on how we can serve? Is it focused on higher consciousness? Is it tuned into a power greater than ourselves? Is it tuned into our little self; our little plans; our little designs? Is this powerful tool we are given running us or are we running it?
When we learn how to run this powerful tool, then we have a powerful resource available. When this ‘machine’ is self-will run riot, with incessant thoughts, mostly focused on our little selves, on negativity, on the past or the future then it has no use for all that matters; this moment.
This moment is the only ‘real’ thing. The past can not be changed. The future has not happened. So why then do we allow our minds to live in those spaces which either no longer exist or have yet to exist? Why do we revisit old hurts, old conversations and choose to live in regret? Why do we live in the future where things have not happened and which often creates anxiety for us?
Why does our ‘thinking mind’ take us to these places and why do we passively allow this process to occur; like a song running in the background that is always present but we’ve learned how to ignore?
The “why” of it is debated. In fact, the “why” of most things is simply a guess, a theory or a place for everyone to pile on and argue over; further keeping us stuck on the “why question” rather than on the HOW solution.
What is more useful to me is “HOW” do I move past that which is! Not ‘why’ is this ….rather it just is. How about “it is this way …. because it simply is.” Why does the sun rise, because it does. Understanding the astrophysics behind this process may be interesting or fascinating if I am an adult, but as a child it may be useless information that makes no sense. I just see the sun as a child and feel it’s warmth and understand that in day I can see and at night I sleep. As a child the sun holds a different meaning for me.
So rather than obsess over why, which may just keep me stuck, I may choose to focus on “how do I move past this?”. The how may vary for each person. What many agree on are some fundamental basics.
Think about a pink elephant. See it’s color? Now imagine it changes color. Now what are you thinking about? Were you thinking about other things? That is because many agree we can not focus on two thoughts simultaneously.
The other exercise most agree on is that mantra’s are powerful. They retrain and recondition our thinking mind. Most religions, spiritual exercises and physical exercise routines, all have an element of ‘conditioning’. If we continue to do the same thing over and over then it will produce a result we are looking for. So find a mantra to replace those free radical thoughts like:
“I want to be joyful. What belief will bring me joy? Does this current thought bring me joy? Is this current thought necessary to have right now? If it is not useful to have this thought right now then how do I choose a different thought? What would that different thought be? What thought could replace this ‘thinking pattern” that causes me to be stuck in the same old circuitous thought pattern? How long have I been playing this thought pattern? Have I ever stopped to question what purpose this thought pattern has in my life? Is it a thought pattern that creates agitation, fear, depression, regret, sadness, etc? If I can choose any thought pattern I want then what thought pattern would bring me joy? Have I ever considered replacing a familiar negative thought pattern with a new positive thought pattern?
These sort of mindful questions allow me to tune into my thought patterns. I have the power to create new thoughts that produce results I want in my life. It is not that my thinking mind is bad. It is that my thinking mind has created attachments to thoughts that no longer serve my purpose.
Detachment does not mean we should be poor or simpleton’s. In fact, I believe detachment means that we can experience true wealth in every sense of the word. We no longer allow things to own us. We are able to experience the joy of every gift given to us. Our mind is a beautiful gift. We have allowed our thoughts to dwell with a lack of purpose and that has caused us to suffer.
What mantra will I focus on for today?
If you liked this blog and want help experiencing the beautiful gift of your mind then call or email Larina at Larina@AskLarina.com or 352.262.7462. Session can be done by skype, phone or in person.