I am often asked, “What does it take to take command of the mind?” This question fits in marvelously with our current topic of conversation – Life Mastery 101.
Life Mastery begins with self-mastery, and self-mastery begins with mind-mastery. Let’s take a peek at mind-mastery. You achieve mind-mastery when you learn how to handle the mind. Here is a great truth worthy of your attention: ‘either you are handling your mind or your mind is handling you’. One leads to self-mastery and the other leads to self-misery. Can you guess which leads to which?
It has been recognized (down through the ages), that the mind is teeming with thoughts and emotions. The mind is rarely still, and an agitated mind is not only constantly on the move, but frantically in motion. In the practice of Zen, the agitated mind has been likened to ‘a monkey that is drunk on alcohol and stung by a scorpion’. Imagine the screeching and jumping!
It is nearly impossible to stop the movement of an agitated mind. Only a very few can do it. However, everyone can learn to calm the mind by directing the flow of thoughts. When you direct the thought-flow, the mind begins moving in the direction that you want your life to go. Mmmm – sweet victory!
Here is the way that I gain control of my mind when it has taken on a jumping-monkey nature of its own:
First, I simply float up over myself and observe the frantic hither and yon flittering of my thoughts. I don’t try to stop the mad jumping about of my thinking process; instead, I make it a point to be an ‘objective observer’ … like being on the top floor of a building – watching a circus parade go by with all of the animals unchained and roaming freely about.
Second, It doesn’t take but a few minute before I experience the fact that I am not the mind… just as I am not part of that circus parade going by. My thoughts and emotions are separate from me. I am up here noticing them. They are restlessly jumping about, but I am not restlessly jumping about with them. When I get to this place of quiet-calm (in spite of my mind), I am able to take my power back.
Third, I now use my power-of-suggestion to apply the Law of Substitution. Nothing is more influential than repeated suggestion. That is how hypnosis works. I have learned that nature hates a vacuum, so if I am to empty my mind of the agitated thoughts, I must replace my thinking with thoughts that point my mind’s attention in the direction of my intentions. My intention is to redirect the mind to what is important to me. I calmly take control of my inward self-talk and remind my mind of an outcome that is important to me. I speak to my mind in a gentle manner, repeatedly talking about the outcome that is important to me. Soon my mind begins once again serving me.
Practice makes perfect – try it!
(1) Please share with me and the other members of this blog-community – what methods have you learned that have helped you regain command of your mind when it is jumping about.
(2) Please share an experience when your mind was jumping hither and yon – and the transformational change that occurred when you got it back under your command.