Holistic Science of Mind for Ideal Living

Jan 07, 2014

Introduction
In recent times the mind has been a source of trouble. Situations are such that people are in a constant state of stress. They are always worried about one thing or another. This engulfment of tensions has made people seek peace of mind. They are seeking solutions like meditation to still the mind. They find great solace when the mind is calm; when thoughts cease. But is this peace sustainable? Is it possible to remain forever in such a thoughtless state? To answer this, it is necessary to understand the nature of mind, its function, how it is formed and how it can be managed.

Nature of mind
Mind is the place from which thoughts emerge. It is a physical entity, composed of sub-atomic particles (anu-parmanus) in the form of globules or knots. Each knot is a collection of thoughts of a particular type. For example, thoughts about health, money, pride, etc.

Distinction from intellect and consciousness
Mind is distinct from intellect (buddhi) and consciousness (chitt). The function of intellect is to evaluate and show advantages and disadvantages in any given situation. For example, on boarding a bus or train, the mind will immediately show the advantage of taking a particular seat; viz a viz, a window seat. The function of consciousness (chitt) is to visualize. When we close our eyes, chitt helps and visualize another place or person. What goes out and wanders is the chitt. This wandering is due to its impurity.

Function of mind
Just as the function of ear is to listen, of eyes to see, the function of mind is to think. Thoughts emerge or sprout automatically at their appropriate time depending upon the circumstances. Mind functions as an indicator. Just as an aircraft pilot gets indications on his screen in case of a problem or if there is an upcoming impediment, the mind emits thoughts when the body is hungry, thirsty or is hurt by someone’s speech or action.  For example, while travelling by car on a curvaceous mountain if we see an accident, the mind will say, ‘What if this happens to us?’ It merely reports the situation.

Mind is also activated when our inner weaknesses like anger, pride, deceit, greed come into play during the course of our daily living.

The present day mind is already formed or pre-charged like a pre-recorded CD. It simply plays out whatever is recorded in it. All thoughts that emerge today are already embedded in the mind previously. These thoughts are only a discharge of what was charged or formed in previous births.

Formation of Mind
Mind is formed by two things. Opinion and Language. In the words of Holistic Scientist Shree A.M.Patel,”Opinion is the father of mind and Language is the mother of mind. When the two come together Mind is formed.” This is bhaav man or causal mind. It is extremely subtle. Bhaav maan results in dravya man or effect mind in the next birth. It is from this effect mind that thoughts emerge. Let us understand this with an example. On seeing a beautiful white rose, if we exclaim in delight and say, “Oh what a beautiful rose!”, we form an opinion that such a rose is beautiful and express it in our language. The cause or seed of mind is sown. Collection of all such expressed opinions is the causal mind. This then becomes dravya man or effect mind in the next birth. So in the next birth when we see a similar white rose, immediately a thought will flash within, ‘Oh what a beautiful rose.’ This is the effect of the cause we had implanted previously.

Glimpse of our past
Based on this, if we observe the major thoughts that come to us in our day to day living, we can get an idea of the type of opinions we must have formed previously. The opinions would have been formed obviously based on our understanding and circumstances prevalent at that time. Our thoughts give us a glimpse of our past; the type of person we were and the kind of beliefs we had held then.

 Management of Mind
Thoughts cannot be stopped. They will definitely come and go as they are pre-charged. What can be stopped or controlled is their influence over us. Let us look at some means by which we can be free from their detrimental influence.

1)      Disengage: Do not get engrossed in it. Just observe the thoughts that arise. Say, ‘Bye, bye’ to each one of them as they come. Simply allow them to pass. If we get engrossed in them, they will seize us and give rise to feelings of fear, joy, hatred, etc. But if we let go, thoughts will just come and go without affecting us.

2)      Nullify with opposite: Nullify distressing thoughts by saying the opposite. For example, when scornful thoughts arise on seeing someone whom we don’t like, say within, ‘Oh, he is such a nice person!’ This will neutralize the effect of the disturbing thought. We can also tell ourselves, ‘Take it easy’ when we are under stressful situations. It will immediately create a soothing effect within.

3)      Refuse to accept: When thoughts arise against our set goals, do not accept them. Rein in the mind, say, ‘Nothing doing, I will not act according to your wish.’ This is similar to a farmer who is proceeding to another place on his bullock cart. He uses the reigns to prevent the bullocks from straying from their path. If the bullocks are allowed to act according to their own wish, the farmer will not be able to reach his destination. Similarly, act according to your targets and not according to the thoughts from the mind. For example, when you make a resolution to get up early or eat healthy, you should act  according to your goals and not listen to the mind.

4)      Set up an appointment: Due to someone’s behaviour or certain situations, the mind gets agitated and thoughts keep pestering us during the day. In this case make an appointment with the mind.  Tell the mind, ‘Meet me at 10pm. I will listen to you then.’ This will silence its chatter during the day allowing us to work freely. Then listen to the mind at night when we are free. We will be able to deal with the mind more rationally.

5)      Give conditional rewards: When we have to do work that we dislike, tell the mind, ‘If you finish off this work you will get to eat your favorite food’ or say, ‘No breakfast till you say your morning prayers.’ Use the carrot and stick approach to do what we wish, rather than be at the mercy of the mind.

6)      Exhaust it: At times we are unable to sleep at night, due to the unending unnecessary chain of thoughts. We try to stop the thoughts and go to sleep. But the thoughts erupt again. We are neither able to sleep nor silence the mind. Rather than stopping the thoughts and trying to go to sleep, we should make the mind a horse and become its rider. Allow the mind to run freely. Tell the mind, ‘Run, run (i.e. think, think) as much as you want.’ After some time it will tire out and you will be able to go to sleep.

Worries
Worries are nothing but an abnormal flow of thoughts. Just as we shut the window when the winds are gusty, we should cease the thinking process when there is a cyclone of thoughts. This typically happens when we have a major problem for which we are unable to find a solution. In such cases we should stop thinking and searching for a solution. There is a very wonderful law in nature which says, ‘The useful thought, (which is the solution) will emerge automatically at its pre-determined time.’ So stop thinking and take it easy till then.

Till such time, to be free from the bombardment of thoughts, divert your attention with a prayer or mantra. This is like shutting our doors and windows when it is noisy outside. One can also talk to one’s own self, reassuring us that everything will be alright. Everything has an expiry date. All circumstances are of parting nature. The present situation will also disintegrate and cease after some time. Ultimately, our own lives too have an expiry date because of a finite life span. So don’t worry, take it easy. Try your level best, and leave it to nature.

Summary
Mind cannot be silenced forever. Thoughts will come and go as they are a result of our past causes. Mind can however be managed. With the above scientific understanding about the nature, formation and management of mind, we can be free from its detrimental effects and use it effectively to progress in life.

Acknowledgement
All the views mentioned in this paper are based on the preaching’s of the enlightened spiritual master Holistic Scientist His Holiness Shree A.M.Patel.

- Swami Pulinanandji