MIND MATTERS

 

 

 

Everyone knows, the mind is the most com-plex sense organ and it often works in mysterious ways. It is said that the Bhagavad Gita is as much a psychological manual as it is a spiritual guide. It provides a comprehensive explanation for complex human behaviour and more importantly equips one with the understanding of workings of the mind which eventually helps in developing counter strategies to manage mind matters. Gita clearly explains how the mind moulds our behaviour and spells out specific ways to modulate the workings of the mind. The complex relationship between the mind, the intellect and the external sense organs are beautifully explained. Finally, theaspects of memory an essential temporal component of the mind are explained.

IMPACT 01 MIND ON HUMAN BEHAVIOUR:

Question: Why are the sense organs (eyes, ears, nose, tongue and skin) difficult to control?

Answer: All sense organs constantly crave for plea-sure and are never fully satisfied. For example, the tongue is very difficult to control as it constantly craves for tasty food. As the body ages, most sense organs lose their effectiveness gradually (eye sight weakens, hearing weakens etc,) but the tongue remains fully active till the very end. Even when some-one is unable to digest food, the tongue still craves for taste. The only solution for keeping the tongue under control is via the mind which in turn can only be truly stabilized by intense practice and the grace of god. Likewise, the skin which is constantly craving for touch is also very difficult to control as it pervades the entire body. Even if someone is handicapped with loss of sensitivity on a limb, the skin in other parts of the body still craves for touch.

Q : HOW DO SENSE ORGANS LEAD ONE ASTRAY? IS THERE A METHOD TO THE MADNESS?

A: Excessive indulgence in sensual activities leads one to be shackled by the so called 'six enemies'. Namely lust, anger, greed, attachment, arrogance and jealousy. The typical procedure for the six en-emies to control a human being is as follows:.

-Mind comes in contact with sense pleasures by constant exposure

-Mind develops attachment to sense pleasure

-Attachment leads to desire to satiate the thirst

-Anger sets in when such desire is not fulfilled

-Anger clouts mind's judgment

-Clouded mind is unable to differentiate between right and wrong things leading to errors in judgment  

-Error in judgment leads to intellectual failure

-Intellectual failure leads to destruction.

Q: HOW CAN ONE THEN AVOID GETTING SHACKLED BY THE SIX ENEMIES AND GET LIBERATED?

A: The first step would be to immerse oneself in performing naturally chosen duties without expecting any gratification. (The analogy quoted is 'detachment like drops of water on lotus flower'. Water drops can never stick on the petals of the lotuses, and in the same way the mind should never get attached to any work or its outcome.) In parallel, meditation the Lord, which helps to calm the mind. A calm mind is a fertile platform for gathering noble thoughts which allows the mind to grasp spiritual studies. This leads to mental equanimity and a strong mind can withstand and repel the at-tack of the six enemies and move towards God.

RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SENSE ORGANS, MIND AND INTELLECT:

Q: How does desire arise in a person?

A: Sense organs such as eyes, ears etc, the mind and the intellect together determine the need and extent of desire in a person which often clouds the mind's clarity of thought and leads a person astray.

 

Q: How does desire lead a person astray?

A: The addictive attribute called desire finds home in a person's sense organs, mind and intellect. The external sense organs are the first entities which by way of perception creates desire in a person. For example the desire to taste food upon seeing or smelling tasty food. Once a person yields to the desires of the sense organs, such desires takes root in the mind and gets stronger. Once this stage is reached, the intellect whose job it is to reason and rationalize issues develops the conviction that the particular desire is indeed worth pursuing and fulfilling. At this stage, it is too late to control the desire which would have taken over the person. Any obstacles in fulfilling these desires result in anger which causes one to commit undesirable and dangerous activities. So, it is better to handle desire at the first stage itself by minimizing or avoiding initial contact.

Q: How can one control or conquer desire?

A: The sensory organs (eyes, ears etc,) the mind and the intellect are involved in the activities of perceiv-ing, capturing, distilling and storing knowledge. The sensory organs, mind and intellect themselves are inert objects but are activated and controlled by various deities. The almighty god is the control-ler of all deities. The deity who controls the intellect is superior to and more powerful than the deity who controls the mind which itself is superior to the deities who control the sense organs. Thus, to control the sense organs which actually implement any activity desired by a person, it is necessary to control the intellect which can then control the mind. Since God is the controller of all in the universe the surest way to control desire is to focus the mind on god and perform one's naturally chosen task without any mundane expectations. This helps one to control and conquer desire. 

 

Source: Sri Gurusarvabhouma English Magazine, mantralaya.

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