The Mind and Its Patterns  By Swami Sukhabodhananda

The mind and its patterns by swami sukhabodhananda

We have spoken of the four qualities of the mind, its psycho-somatic nature that extends beyond the brain and spine to envelop the whole body, even each cell of its millions. It is nature’s most sophisticated technology, a powerful one at that. We’ve delved a little bit into how the Vedic concept of the human condition considers these interactions of the mind-body as creating an illusion that prevents us from knowing our true nature. We may do well to know how the mind works in our everyday lives. How do we employ this most sophisticated technology to reach a true understanding of the Self?


It is unfortunate that our education and life experiences create and enforce patterns of thinking that become engrained in us. In neuropsychology, this may be explained through the concept of anagrams: a means by which memories are stored when external stimuli cause biophysical or biochemical changes in neural tissue.


You have to change the old pattern of the mind which is habituated to a world of ‘becoming’ and has forgotten the world of ‘being’. Our mind can be trained and conditioned to work according to our interests. You will never be the same once you drop the old mind and start living freshly in this moment. Dropping the future is cutting off the deception that the future is the saviour and the present is a curse of existence. One has to destroy this foolishness. If one takes a close look, time exists as past and future. The present is not part of time. The moment you look at the present it becomes the past. It is difficult to understand unless one looks at life deeply.


The real ‘enemy’ in life is not difficult situations, but the mind, which is unwilling to be flexible, is resistant to explore, and addicted to its own way of doing things. Our mind has become a whirlpool, for it is not an abiding mind but a scattered mind. A scattered mind is activity. It always wants to be occupied. It goes on seeking and seeking and seeking. The activity-ridden mind creates illusions and starts running after the illusions and then gets disappointed when it realizes that illusions do not provide joy or happiness. This upset mind seeks happiness in the future. If one is lost in such a mind and its pranks, it is madness.


The mind is whipped by desire, by ambition, greed and other such addictions. We are self-hypnotized beings falling prey to our own illusions. The drama of these illusions is not life. When one looks deeply, one sees that the future is nothing but an extension of the present and the present is an expression of the past. If you are unhappy now, you will be unhappy in the future because it is an extension of the present. You have to learn to change the ‘now’ in order for the future to change. You have to observe what is happening in this very moment in order for the future to change.


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