Thursday, February 26, 2015

Gurudev, what is the purpose of the mind? I only see bondage and sadness associated with it. Do we really need that layer of existence?

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Sri Sri Ravi Shankar:
Just let it be! That is the secret to handle the mind.

If you try to get rid of the mind, it becomes a monster. If you just let the mind be, it will vanish!
When you are not aware of the tricks and the mumbo-jumbo going on in the mind, then life is misery. This is because life is based on the mind.
When you recognize that all this is in my mind (judging people and situations, holding concepts about the self and others); you recognize that you are making a mess of everything in your mind.

'This is how it should be', or, 'It should not be like this', whenever such thoughts come, it means the mind is coming into play; this is all part of the world. This is where you need to latch onto that non-changing, abstract, invisible energy or power. When you latch onto it, you are no longer caught in the grip of the mind.
When we are in the grip of the mind, we make ourselves and others miserable.

Look back at your mind, not at others, and see what drama and pain has been caused by it. When you do that, it is no longer pain, it is entertainment. It is like a multi-channel television, a movie channel that has caused so much comedy, suspense, drama, and misery in your life.
This is the reason why all the great saints and poets always addressed their own mind, ‘Oh, my dear mind, how fascinating you are, why do you get caught up in so many things! Why do you not recognize that which is so magnanimous, and so beautiful?’Rumi, Kabir, all the great saints, have sung about their own mind.

In The Bhagavad Gita also, it is said that the mind is responsible for your freedom and bondage.
The mind is a friend and an enemy. When the mind is your enemy, it ties you down to your past impressions and experiences, because it does not let you see things with a fresh new eye. This is because everything we perceive is through the mind; even knowledge is perceived through the mind. When the mind is your enemy, it makes you judgmental, brings misery, stiffness and unhappiness.

When the mind is your friend, it makes you relax, smile, brings happiness, freedom, and liberation. So, the mind can be our greatest enemy or our best friend.

What if a resolution breaks?

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Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: 
Never mind. In the field you throw so many seeds. Not all seeds sprout. Some sprout, some don’t. When you sow saplings, not every sapling grows. Some do, some don’t. In a tree, not all flowers become fruit. Some fall when they are not even ripe. That’s why you put your effort and then you give up (here meaning surrender).
Giving up without putting any effort is foolishness and after putting all your effort, not giving up is also foolishness. Put all your effort and give up. Not putting all your effort and giving up is also foolishness.
What makes you free? Putting your effort and giving up makes you free.
If you say, 'I give up', without putting effort, it doesn’t make you free. You say, 'I give up', but you have not really given up because of that tendency of wanting to do. That will hold you back from being free. The secret of freedom is, put your effort and give up.
Not putting your effort and giving up doesn’t free you. And, putting all your effort and not giving up will also not free you.
Any action should only be done with awareness. An action from an unaware state has no meaning. Then it’s not called effort.

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