Mind in meditation : to follow it’s demand or keep watching ?

Question : The experience of the tensing, pressure, crying and laughing came back. There was a point where my eyes were blurry from all the tears and I was aware that my mind was thinking that I was looking at one thing, but when I opened my eyes it was something else, in that moment I laughed and realized how strong the mind can paint reality; however, at the same time I questioned was this just mind playing with mind.

I’m also noticing today that I’m aware of my mind making my body do things. One moment it will come up with a task, like it will think: you have to go do morning exercise, then the next is go eat breakfast, then the next is go type this message to Wanderling and I feel the body just being controlled by the mind go here and there… now I see how in physical reality the body can get drained eventually trying to follow the thousand things the mind comes up with.

I’m stuck as in not knowing what to do? Do I follow the demands and thoughts of the mind? or just keep watching? So when the mind says go do this, go do that.. do I just follow and witness? Three things can happen, one I conform to the mind and go with what mind says, another is where the other side of my mind questions and contradicts to make me not act, then there is the third side that just watches me take either action. My only concern is at times I just don\’t know what is the right action to take, I’m thinking all this is probably again in the mind as the true self is probably neutral.. yet I don’t really know this I only believe and think based on what I’ve read and learned but not what I know, understand or have experienced.

Answer : It is nothing but the game of your mind. You have to be just a witness of this sop-opera created by your mind. Mind is a very deceptive and clever fellow. Meditation means the end of mind and it’ll certainly don’t like to die. So it will create various obstacles in your path. My advice to you is to don’t be judgmental. If you are living a life then there will be needs. You’ll have to work, eat, drink and do all those worldly activities. For that you’ll have to follow your body and mind. What your mind does is to assist your body in doing various tasks. Up to this role it has an importance. However, when it starts playing its game; when it becomes a non-stop chatterbox; the problem begins. We need to make it quite. It has its use and we can’t ignore it. But when it creates hindrance by becoming too strong we need to control it.

If you observe closely you will realize that the mind itself is a non-entity. It is just a collection of various thoughts which keep emerging in our mind. When we start watching these thoughts without associating ourselves with them, these thoughts start loosing their power. They simply fade away. The key is to just be watchful of these thoughts. Don’t make an association with them. And it is a very subtle thing to do. So many thoughts come in our mind and those too at such a rapid pace that often we get involved in them. We need to be careful and aware to be non-attached from the thoughts that emerge in our mind.

The witness in you tells you that your mind has become two sided. One side says to follow this; the other side say to follow that and you are confused which side to choose. Should you choose ‘A’ or ‘B’ or not to choose any. The main thing to do is to observe this entire confusion very closely.

It is the mind which says- “Do this.”

It is the same mind which contradicts and says, “Don’t do this.”

And it is once again the mind which says, “Don’t take any decision of doing or not doing.”

So when you say that you are confused which thing to follow i.e. whether to follow the wishes of the mind, not to follow it’s wishes or to not take any decision about it; think about it: from where this confusion is coming. Isn’t it the mind, which is creating this confusion? Your ‘self’ is aware of this confusion and yes; it is neutral. It is not part of this confusion but a watcher of this entire confusion.

You say that often you don’t know what is the right action to take. Well, depending upon the problem you are facing, you’ll have to take a decision by applying your mind and evaluating various aspects of this problem. It is similar to what we all do when faced with a problem. There is nothing special about it. The true self will be a watcher of what action you choose. If you got a call for a lucrative job in some other city there will be two option for you – Either to accept that offer and move to the new city or to refuse that offer. Now which option to choose is entirely dependent on your own circumstances and your own evaluation of the problem? What is the role of true self in it? It will be just a witness of your thoughts.

Since you have a life; you’ll have to live it. And it involves doing all kind of mundane tasks. An awareness of self helps us realize that amidst all these activities our real identity remains intact and all we are doing is not more than a role which we’ve to play in this world. This feeling help us realize the temporary character of life and lessen our sense of attachment in this world Slowly as our awareness of this ‘self’ deepens, our whole attitude towards life starts changing. We become more calm and compassionate towards others as we all see a reflection of our self in them.