First Step in Mind Training

Day 29: When a person is able to control the mind they have a different kind of aura and presence; a more powerful presence.  A remarkable quality of a trained mind is the ability to listen, just be quiet, really quiet because the mind is trained. A quiet mind can pick up the wisdom from within and around.  A mind that is busy cannot really pick up everything from the space.

If you find your mind has a lot of thoughts, the first step is not to just sit and try to blank out the mind.  That is a very difficult step, moving from a busy mind to a completely quiet mind, wouldn’t you say?  The first step is to really lessen the number of thoughts, so that you can have one particular thought in the mind. That is the beginning of mind training. When you are able to have one particular thought there, then you can drop that thought, then you can see what silence is there when thoughts go away.  Not that the mind is passive, by no means, the mind is alert but it is being managed.  Thoughts can arise, but the mind is being managed.  Can you do that?

In the Science of Yoga, one thought that is used to train the mind and ultimately liberate the mind, is called ‘Mantra’.  An essential meaning of mantra is that which protects the mind and ultimately that which liberates the mind.  If you take a mantra that you feel close to, and if you are not familiar with this Science of Mantra, you can use an affirmation,  or you can keep a sacred word in the mind of your tradition, whatever your tradition is.  That sacred word becomes a mantra. If that word is sacred to you then it is easier to hold in the mind.  In the beginning, you try to do it in a place where you will not be disturbed.  Find a moment when you are not disturbed by anything around you and then begin the practice of repeating this, but when you are repeating it, you need to listen to yourself repeat it.  As you say it inside begin to observe how you are saying it.  This is necessary because here you are opening up the consciousness, so you see you are repeating it.  As you repeat it, try to listen as well by repeating with full focus.  Naturally, a number of other thoughts will arise and some of us will become hijacked.  The goal is not to be hijacked.  Every time we become aware that we have been hijacked, come back and after a while the hijacking will get less and after a while all the hijacking stops.  Can you imagine that you will be able, with training, to bring the mind to one thought?  Ultimately when you drop that thought, the peace is so amazing.

If we take this a step further, if it is really a sacred word, every time we say it, it is going to remind us of that Greater Power.  That sacred word, when we give attention to it and really hold it in reverence, can keep us connected to that great power that we exist in, that Supreme Power.  What more can we ask for, if this word can keep us connected to that power?


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