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What is in the Mind?

The mind is truly an instrument which has a life of its own. Even if you are now able to detach from the mind, it is amazing how it keeps coming back, luring or in fact, sneaking behind to wrap you back into delusion.

Now, I am not meaning to say that the mind is bad or insidious though we do tend to put such labels onto it. But consider that it is our skills that need to be sharpen to maintain awareness, or to be able to watch it without interfering or getting involved with it.

It is like this, say the mind is swimming with thoughts of someone and we so happened to experience a stomach ache, or a toothache (which is also part of the mind by the way) that is possibly derived from the present environment that we are unaware of, but because the mind is swarmed with majority thoughts of this person, there is a tendency to think that our discomfort is associated with this person. For intuitive people, the mind may conjure meaning that the discomfort is from the other as in sensing the other, hence making that phone call or effort to connect with the other person. And because the mind is hanging on so strongly to that particular idea that the discomfort is related to the other person, even if the person was to honestly express, “no, I do not have an ache in my body.” The mind cannot hear it. The mind only hears what it wants to hear, what is it ready to hear hence the possibility of that person not in discomfort is not recognisable.

The mind prefers, which is why we will find ourselves caught in preference, which is not really us. A practitioner who is in constant practise will be able to tell you that she is able to detach from anger, sadness to a certain level and when depression comes to visit, she can be totally wrapped up in these emotions and thinks that she has gone into a depression. What happens here is that intensity of these feelings because they become so overwhelming that it can be somewhat difficult to detach from it hence the identification with the mind, as in what mind conjures = I become. Similar to an example of eating your favourite food, say fried chicken and one of your don’t-mind-it food such as peanuts. Do you observe that the tendency to enjoy the experience of fried chicken is higher than eating peanuts? The thing is that, who is the one enjoying it? If it is peanuts that is entering your mouth, then it is likely that you will be able to detach and watch the mind’s reactions or response towards what is already here; but if it is fried chicken put into the mouth, the tendency to watch detachingly is lower as the intensity of these feelings become overwhelming hence resulting in us being the reaction or the response. So, if one who does not have the higher skills to detach further, will get absorbed into the experience and thinks that she is the one who likes to eat chicken wings.

In truth, everything is happening in the mind and what becomes the ‘problem’ is that we identify with the mind. There is no issue in mind experiences except that when that happens, we lose awareness due to the intensity of the arising feelings.

So will it be wise to avoid situations that potentially arise intense feelings? I’d say no, as that sort of suppression of the mind only tends to perpetuate the situation further resulting in much intense feelings afterwards, having you roped into its fantasy as well.

Use these situations of intense feelings instead, as a means to sharpen skills. The more intense it is, the better but the chances of getting caught in the cobwebs are also high. And when the illusion is dense, it may take quite a while of ‘suffering’ before one wakes up to reality.

So when we are in love with someone, is it really we who are in love, or is there something happening in the mind that we have not yet come to understand? When we are able to detach from the mind, as in not identify with the mind albeit still feeling the emotions, it is possible to notice that the emotions start to fade away; not because we do not love the other person, but the storyline of it somewhat simmers down or even ceases. What is left is unconditionality and a whole new world opens up.

Being able to be that awake, the mind is used as a tool merely for wilful functions and communication. This goes to say that we are no longer pulled by the nose to be caught up in delusional storylines that does not serve the peace of mind. It is about bringing the mind to peace, liberating the mind. For since we experience through the mind, it is important that the mind performs what it is willed and not the other way round, as in willing us to experience whatever it wishes. Not that it wishes, but it is just being run by unquestioned ancient stuffs that we have not yet come to understand and realise.

Thus, the importance of observing and understanding the nature of the mind, for all of life, is in the mind.

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