For protection amid pandemics, seek not just a hand sanitizer, but also a mind sanitizer
During pandemics, we protect ourselves from germs using a hand sanitizer. Simultaneously, we need to protect ourselves from unhealthy emotions such as panic; these emotions are like germs that can easily infect our mind amid the overall atmosphere of anxiety in a pandemic. To protect our mind, we need a mind sanitizer.
For sanitizing the mind, one powerful resource is meditation. Meditation becomes sublimely pacifying when it takes our consciousness to the spiritual center of our being — the center that lies beyond turbulent situations and turbulent emotions triggered by those situations. That spiritual center, the Bhagavad-gita explains, is who we are: indestructible non-material beings. Meditation helps us experience who we really are.
Among various forms of meditation, one especially accessible form is sonic meditation: meditation on sounds that take our consciousness to spiritual reality. Some spiritual sounds are: verses from spiritual texts such as the Gita; quotes conveying spiritual truths; and mantras invoking divinity. When we bathe our mind in spiritual sounds by hearing, reciting and remembering those sounds, that immersion of our consciousness becomes a form of meditation. And this meditation helps us realize our spirituality, infusing us with an inner calm that drives away fear. No wonder the Gita (13.26) recommends immersion in spiritual sound.
Just as we ensure that hand sanitizers are accessible whenever needed, we need to ensure that spiritual sounds are accessible whenever needed. To this end, we can note or memorize mantras, verses and quotes that we find helpful for leading our thoughts toward spiritual truth. Thereafter, as soon as we sense fear rising within us, we can focus on those sounds and that focus will purge our mind of fear.
When we thus sanitize our mind with spiritual sound, we can face pandemics prudently — with due caution but without undue fear.
Think it over:
- How does meditation pacify us?
- How does sonic meditation act as a mind sanitizer?
- How can you keep spiritual sound accessible?
13.26: Again there are those who, although not conversant in spiritual knowledge, begin to worship the Supreme Person upon hearing about Him from others. Because of their tendency to hear from authorities, they also transcend the path of birth and death.
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