Categories
Current Issues Society

Angry humans and a dead dog

Keeping your eyes open helps you a lot. When your eyes are open, you can find solutions everywhere around you. The world is flooded with the solutions. Only thing is, our eyes should be open to perceive them.

Angry humans who are found all around is a big problem which we encounter everywhere. This problem is typically faced by middle class people who are flooded with anger but have no medium to express it. They are most of the times unable to be angry just because of limitations; limitations are infinite- financial, social, and political. Then there is another class of people in India. These people do not deserve the money or power which they have. These people are always throwing their anger on the poor helpless people who belong to middle class. Many times, an otherwise calm and silent person blasts out like a volcano collapsing under the burden of suppressed anger.

In India, you find such angry humans everywhere. They are present almost everywhere- in offices, on streets, inside shops, in colleges. We are flooded with these angry humans. I remember infinite moments when my teachers, parents, colleagues and yes also I were unable to handle this burden of suppressed anger.

Today, I witnessed a heated argument which took place in between one of such angry humans and a typical middle class humble man. The venue for this event was a petrol pump and the reason was delay in filling the petrol. Middle class man tried to argue with the angry fellow, without success. The end of conversation was middle class man silently slipping into his car and driving away and the angry man fuming and shouting.

I went ahead with my schedule and was having a walk after some time on same evening. As a habit, I was thinking about the serious problem of angry humans. I know, there is no other solution than being more meditative and aware and skeptical of self behavior. I also know, very few of us will give this problem due attention, unless they are victim of some serious disease or mental disorder. I was questioning, do we have a right to be talked with respect and dignity by others? Can anyone claim a right of being rude and disrespectful to someone over small or big issues? While going through all this brainstorming over the angry humans, I had walked quite a long and my steps were stopped by half rotten body of a dead dog. Eyes were squeezed and skull distorted. The dog might be a victim of middle class person who was in a hurry to rush to his office to avoid the anger of his boss. All was pulled out of my thoughts.

We are living in a human world where we talk about our dignity and respect, and see; thousands are dying under our cars. I am not talking only about dogs and cats but also about human beings. Here is a link from The Time Magazine which tells how hundreds of workers died like mice in a squeezed box.

Portraits of pain

The number of people dying because of lack of food, number of poor people who are being cheated, exploited is far more than our imagination.

We demand self respect and dignity. Do we spend some time to ensure that no one’s fundamental rights are getting hurt because of us?

For me, everything- the problem of angry humans and also the problem of maintaining self respect and dignity boils down to ego. We raise all the above issues when our ego gets hurt. If it is not, who bothers about an argument on a petrol pump and who has time for a poor dog squeezed under a car?

Categories
mysticism

In present, there is no space, no mind….

Mind can be considered as the greatest problem faced by human beings. We generally consider mind as the greatest gift. Only human beings are able to think so profoundly. Only human beings have developed such subtle feelings. It is always said that, the greatest gift that humanity has got from god is his mind.

But, mind is the greatest problem on the way. The greatest obstacle. Man could think about something beyond mundane life only because of his mind. I think this is the greatest gift that mind has given to us. But, the mind is helpful only up to realizing this truth, that there is something beyond the mundane. Once this truth is realized, mind should also be left along with the other mundane things. Mind is meant for mundane things.

In scriptures, it is written somewhere that there are three types of things. Things which are known, unknown and unknowable. We know things because of the mind, we perceive them with the help of this mind. The unknown things can be brought under the category of ‘known things’ with the help of the mind. The most important function of mind is, at some point it helps you to realize that there is something left by it. Something beyond the scope of mind.The unknowable.

To experience this unknowable (I am not using the word ‘know’ because the unknowable can only be experienced, tasted.) mind is not needed. But, this has been our tradition, our conditioning that we use only our mind to deal with the things. We do not know any other language, mediator other than mind. And this creates the madness in the world. People go on finding answers, theories to explain the eternal truth. Which is just like trying to measure the infinite ocean with the help of a small tumbler.

Now, what to do about this mind? So, here comes a very basic principle about the mind and its functioning. Mind can not move in present. It can move only either in past or in the future. In present there is no space. Mind can either contemplate over the past or can imagine about the future. These two are the working areas of mind. When it come to present, there is n o scope for the mind. In present, you do not think, rather, you live in the present.

So, the best way to deal with the mind is live moment. Bring your focus totally on the present, or rather just be present. This concept of bringing the mind in the present has been utilized by different religions in different forms, via different meditations. Hindu, Buddhist, Zen masters have used this concept by giving different meditations. One point to note is that, they have not given any theory for curing the problem of the mind, rather they have given techniques. It is just like eating the medicine. Eat it and it will work. There is no scope for your mind.

In Vigyan Bhairav Tantra there are 112 meditation techniques. Most of them just try to restrict you in the present. So that there is no scope for the mind. Buddha has given the breathing techniques which try to bring you in the present so that there is no scope for the mind. Ashtavakra Muni has given Sakshibhav as his main principle. Sakshibhava forces the mind to be inactive. Zen people use Zazen i.e. witnessing as there main tool Witnessing also limits the mind.

So, be in the present. Live the life moment to moment. Do not repent for the past also do not imagine the future. Be  in the present. Make it as beautiful as possible. And always remember, in present, there is no space and hence no mind.

Categories
Zen

The game of Dreams….

The sleep has no value, or to be more precise, activities in sleep have no value. It is all fiction. Activity in sleep does not need any courage; rather things which we cannot to when we are awake, we do them in the dreams. Dreams are like customizable lives. All that we want to do, feel, get; it can be done felt or gotten in the dreams.

Stop the dreams....

This living world is also nothing but a dream. One remarkable thing about dream is that, when we are having a dream in night, it feels totally actual and real. We generally don’t doubt while having a dream that this is a dream.

I remember a beautiful story from Lao- Tsu. One day, he had a dream. In which he was a butterfly. After waking up, he was all confused. His disciples gathered around him, and asked what the matter was. Lao Tsu answered, “Today, I saw myself as a butterfly in dream. Now I am wondering if I am a Lao Tsu dreaming a butterfly, or a butterfly dreaming a Lao Tsu?”

Many spiritual doctrines consider this life also as a dream. That all these things we do, are being done in sleep. If this theory is to be accepted, then, things can be put up like this-

‘If I kill a person in the dream, I will be punished for it in my dream only. In the same way, if I do any activity in the sleep of my delusion, and if by chance I wake from this sleep of my ignorance, all the punishments are gone.’

This is one of the reasons why Zen people give emphasis on awareness rather than forcing some moral rules.

More from the world of Zen-

Feel the Zen, be the Zen

What is needed is deprogramming

Categories
mysticism Society

Nature of Mind and Thought

Mind of a human being is the driving force behind all of his actions. This mind controls the wills and the wishes of the person. All the noble things that happen under this sun are an outcome of this mind and at the same time each and every sin being committed, is committed under the influence of the mind. Many researchers have worked a lot to find out how mind works. Indian mystics and philosophers also, have contemplated much on this mind. The key fact is that, knowing the working of mind as it is described in Indian mystics, much within a human can be changed. So, here I will like to discuss some very striking insights about Thoughts, Mind and how they work.

The Nature of mind and thought

What is a thought? In general, thought can be of two types-

1.    General thought- This thought just comes and goes, without leaving behind any impression on the mind. Suppose, a person having no interest in automobiles, finds a very wonderful car while he is on the road. Now, this thought will not have any influence on this person because, it has nothing to do with the interests of the person. The person at max will exclaim, “A wonderful car!” and leave. This thought will not have any influence over the person’s action.

2.  Influential thought- Now imagine the same incidence discussed above with the only difference that the person is crazy about cars. Now, the person will attach himself with his thought. All of his later actions will be dependent upon this thought. Perhaps he may forget his work and go behind the car or chase it, or he may even sell his house to have this car in his porch

General thought has hardly any influence on human life. The whole human life is governed by the influential thought. Indian mystics have dealt very wonderfully with this concept of influential thought. There are two ways in general which describe relation between mind, thought and human nature-

1.    The way of Mystic Tilopa-

Tilopa  has been one of the contemplative mystics. In his Master piece, known as The Song of Mahamudra, Tilopa says that mind is like the sky and thoughts are like the clouds. Thoughts simply come and go but space is not at all affected by them. If white cloud comes, space appears white and if dark cloud comes, it appears dark; but in the reality, space has no colour of its own. This is the darkness or ignorance about the nature of mind and that’s why, we attach ourselves with thoughts. To know that mind is nothing but colourless and form less space and thoughts come and go without even touching it is the true understanding of the nature of the mind.

So, according to Tilopa, mind should be untouched by the thoughts. They should come and go; but mind must not identify itself with any of these thoughts.

2.    Thoughtlessness-

This is the way used by almost all the other mystics. Even, Zen sect has its prime focus on this Thoughtlessness state. This way simply stops all the thoughts. It has been said that thoughts are like waves in a pond. They distort the rays of light coming in. In the same way, thoughts are the waves in our perception. They alter the way things are received. So, main focus of this way lies on completely stopping the thoughts, which will lead us to a clear vision of world as it is in reality. In other words, to attain a thoughtlessness state.This thoughtlessness makes the mind as still as a pond, whose bottom can be seen very easily, without any distortion.

3.  No- Mind State-

No Mind state is very similar to the way of Tilopa. In this state, you just drop your mind. In other words, you pay no heed to your mind. If a baby falls down while playing, it cries only when someone is looking at it. If no one is there, it simply gets up and starts playing again. We should treat mind the same way. We should not at all pay any heed to what goes on in mind. As a result, the process of thought formation will stop automatically, because when no one is noticing, mind, just like a baby, stops producing thoughts.

All of these ways, though they appear quite different at surface, work on the same principle- Keep a safe distance. My opinion is that, we should have mind like a knife in the pocket. We are not at all slave of it. We will not be used by it; on the other hand, we can use it for self protection whenever needed. If humans are able to deal with their thoughts without being attached to them, I think all the problems that stand in front of society today, will drop down.

Categories
mysticism

Thoughts and Mind- A deeper Look

Many of the readers of my blog were much more confused than before after reading an articles about the functioning of  mind. So I am rather writing a new post to describe how mind actually works. The original article is –

Thoughts in the mind- Clouds in the Sky

The article says that thought are nothing but the clouds coming in the sky. They come and go. Just as sky is not affected by the clouds, neither it holds the colour of the clouds, mind should also must not attach itself with the thoughts.

Readers say that thoughts originate from the mind. So, how mind can be indifferent from the thoughts? My question is, there come thousands of thoughts in our mind. They come and go. Only those thoughts which are related to our mind are dealt with mind specially. It is said that human ,mind produces 22,000 thoughts per day. We even do not notice atleast 20, 000 thoughts. We notice other and unify our mind with thoughts it means, we are unable to maintain distance. Readers say that it is very basic nature of mind to be attached with the thoughts. Then mind should attach itself with all those 22, 000 thoughts. But it does not happens so. This means mind also has an ability of keeping distance. And what Tilopa says is, just as you maintain distance from thoughts which does not touch you, in the same way, you should be able to maintain distance from thoughts along with which you attach your mind.

More Philosophy articles-

Death- the seed of life

Joy is inside you

Categories
mysticism philosophy Uncategorized

Thoughts in the Mind-Clouds in the Sky

Pure space has neither colour nor shape
and it cannot be stained either black or white

These two lines, told by the great mystic Tilopa to his Disciple Naropa show the subtle working of mind in its reality. Pure space has no shape and also, it doesn’t not have any colour. The pure space can never be stained. Clouds come and go in the sky. But, sky is not identified with any of the clouds. Neither the sky becomes white if there is a white cloud in sky nor it becomes black when there is a dark cloud in the sky. In reality, the sky has nothing to do with the clouds. The clouds just come and go without even giving minute attention to the sky.This is how mind should work. Thoughts should come and go in the mind, but without staining the mind.

Clouds in the sky are nothing but thoughts in the mind

But, the trouble arises, when the mind tries to identify itself with the thought. Tilopa then again says to Naropa-

A single lamp dispels the darkness of a thousand aeons;
Likewise, a single flash of the mind’s clear light
Erases eons of karmic conditioning and spiritual blindness.

Darkness is an impotent term. Darkness can do nothing even if it is thousands of years old. Darkness actually does not exist. It is a negative term i.e. absence of light. So, we need not fight with the darkness. What we need to do is bring a source of light. That’s all. In the same way, this attachment with thoughts is nothing but the darkness. Darkness of ignorance about how mind works. And the spark is Mahmudra i.e. the ultimate posture. Once this true nature of mind is known, the problem is solved. Once we realize that the mind is nothing but the space and thoughts are nothing but the clouds, attachment is gone.