Reflections

Content of your mind is not your choice

Questioner: I’m aware of all of the ways that I mess with myself, my nonsense. And I create a lot of pain for myself, so I’m going towards awareness but I’m still experiencing the pain of the mind. How might someone address that? 

Sadhguru: The content of your mind is not your choice; it is decided by where you are. Everything that is around you gets into it. You have no choice about what you have gathered. And what you have gathered in your mind goes far beyond your present levels of perception. But it gathers everything that the five senses come in touch with. In wakefulness and in sleep, it gathers. It is just that most of it is not in the form of conscious memory, so you do not know. But it is all there. So the content of your mind is not your choice; it has happened. Whatever you are exposed to has been absorbed by the mind. It just soaked up everything that it came in touch with. 

Now what is hurting you is this: you want to think about God, but your mind thinks about something else. This is your pain, isn’t it? You must have tried to discipline your mind in some way or the other, but has it worked? That’s the question. Has it worked? Next 10 minutes, I will tell you what are the things you should not think about, will it work? No. So there is no point trying to fix the garbage bin. When I refer to the mind as ‘garbage bin’, I’m not saying it is not useful. Isn’t the garbage bin very useful in your house? You can live without a television, you can even live without a telephone, but you can’t live without a garbage bin. It is most essential for your house. But just because it is so useful, would you decide to sleep in it tonight? If you did that, life would be terrible, wouldn’t it? That’s all that has happened to you. This mind is a fantastic instrument, anything and everything that it comes in touch with, it is storing it up for you, for your use. But now you are sleeping in it, you are living in it, so it is big trouble – big time, not small time. If you could keep the garbage bin in such a way that, when you want it you can open it, and when you don’t want to use it, you can shut it and keep it there, that would be great. The problem right now is that it is always open. Not only it is open, but you are sitting in it. You have to crawl out of it now. 

Don’t try to fix the garbage bin. Do you want to empty it? “No, all the ‘dirty’ things in my mind, let them go!” If they go away, you will start exploring all the same ‘dirty’ things once again because they are new. Please keep them in your mind, they are very important. The dirtiest and the filthiest of things on this planet are very important; they must be in your mind. If your discretion is active, you won’t walk into them. If you don’t live in that, there is no problem. But if you are helplessly living there, that is the problem. 

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“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”

People are often unreasonable and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives. Be kind anyway. 
If you are honest, people may cheat you. Be honest anyway.
If you find happiness, people may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough. Give your best anyway. 
For you see, in the end, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.”
-Mother Teresa



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