Calming the restless mind

POWER OF MEDITATION It eases mental stress

POWER OF MEDITATION It eases mental stress   | Photo Credit: Photo: G.P. Sampath Kumar

YOGA When a disturbed mind is controlled, you can experience inner peace

Consciousness or Chitta is self-awareness and an essential part of one’s existence. The mind or manas is a part of consciousness, a storehouse of desires, thoughts and emotions that control and mould your personality. Manas-mind is the desiring or pleasure seeking part of the mind. The larger part of mind is the “I” or ego or ahamkara or false self. The ego-mind is the most difficult aspect of mind to control. The discriminating part of the mind is intellect or buddhi.

The nature of the mind is restless and constantly changing. It goes back and forth. Many thoughts get repeated and become deep rooted. Therefore the mind is called a phonograph or record player. The repetitive thoughts disturb the mind and distort the image of reality. There is poor perception, confusion, unhappiness and ill health. Such a mind is weak and undisciplined called the monkey mind. A disciplined mind is calm, healthy and strong. There is alertness, clarity, contentment and joy. Such a mind makes the body healthy, prevents and cures many health issues.

Swami Sathya Sai Baba describes mind, “The mind is woven out of the yarn of desire. It fluctuates through the senses into the external world of colour, sound, taste, smell and touch. It can be definitely tamed.”

Psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud believed that the mind is a battlefield of conflicting impulses that have their roots in the early childhood. Some impulses get buried in the unconscious mind and cause depression, anxiety, guilt, fear and insomnia.

John Milton in ‘Paradise Lost’ has described the mind as “Mind is its own place and in itself; can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.”

Sage Patanjali in his ‘Yoga Sutras’ has given practical and scientific solutions to awaken and discipline the mind. This book is the foremost scripture of Raja Yoga and a blue-print for the seekers of wisdom.

Tips from the Yoga Sutras

With Abhyasa or practice, Vairagya or non-attachment, you can control the restless mind.

Cultivate constant effort to steady the wandering mind using the powerful tools of yoga — asanas, pranayama and meditation.

Long duration and dedicated practice of prolonged inhalation and exhalation calms the restless mind.

Replace negative thoughts with positive thoughts. When you have anger, hatred, jealousy, develop love. This is called Pratipaksha Bhavana.

Be friendly with happy people, be compassionate with distressed people, feel delighted with the virtuous and disregard the wicked people.

Ignorance, ego, hatred, anger, jealousy, attachment to worldly pleasures and fear of death are great obstacles for peace.

When the disturbances in the mind are controlled, the mind becomes transparent and you can easily look deep and experience the inner peace.



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