Dealing with the mind’s negativities (Why we need inner redesigning 3)
Suppose we are trapped in a cell with a cellmate who constantly draws our attention to the many terrible images on the cell walls. While we may try to replace those images, we also need to deal with the cellmate effectively.
Similarly, in our inner world, our mind often keeps highlighting our negative memories. While we may try to replace those memories, we also need to deal with the mind effectively if we are to maintain our positivity or even our sanity.
For dealing with the mind, here are two strategies:
Negotiating: While the mind may act as our enemy, it is not intrinsically our enemy; it can even be our friend (Bhagavad-gita 06.06). Appreciating its potential for goodness, we can negotiate with it, explaining how its interests and our interests are not mutually exclusive. Significantly, Gita wisdom shares empowering insights and practices that anchor us in our spiritual core, thereby providing us a position of strength from which to negotiate. If we negotiate without a spiritual foundation, our communication will probably end in capitulation. Being spiritually anchored, we can ensure that our mind lets us focus on the things that are important for us and we can go along with those of its promptings that aren’t against our important values and purposes.
Neglecting: Sometimes, our mind just refuses to listen to reason or makes demands about things that are non-negotiable for us. At such times, we can strive to absorb ourselves in some important activities, thereby turning away from the obstinate mind. Though it may scream initially, it will eventually weaken due to being starved of attention and come to the negotiating table.
For dealing with the mind’s negativities, anchor yourself in your spirituality to learn when to negotiate with it and when to neglect it.
Think it over:
- List three areas where you can get the mind to go along with you and three areas where you can go along with it.
- List three spiritual resources that can empower you for inner negotiation.
- List three absorbing activities that can help you neglect your mind.
06.06: For him who has conquered the mind, the mind is the best of friends; but for one who has failed to do so, his mind will remain the greatest enemy.