Mindfulness Practices

Regular practice with wisdom and purifying the mind are the keys to succeed in mindfulness

असंशयं महाबाहो मनो दुर्निग्रहं चलम् |

अभ्यासेन तु कौन्तेय वैराग्येण च गृह्येते ||( Bhagvad Gita 6.35)

asanśhayaṁ mahā-bāho mano durnigrahaṁ chalam
abhyāsena tu kaunteya vairāgyeṇa cha gṛihyate

Krishna, the originator of yoga says: O mighty-armed son of Kunti (disciple and seeker), what you say is correct; the mind is indeed very difficult to restrain. But by practice and dispassion, it can be controlled.

Eastern Wisdom is knowledge about subjective reality. Every master helped people at their time to know mind, body, consciousness and existence. The brain is gray matter, considered part of the body. What we are learning is the result of 6000 years of research to make life better, free from suffering (now termed stress and stress induced disorders).

The master agrees with the disciple that mind indeed is difficult to control. This is one of many ways, masters educate their disciples. But the next statement by the master makes easy for the seeker to take over the mind. It is like talk-therapy in today’s world. 

The master says there are two steps to secure inner peace, happiness, love and wisdom – regular practice with wisdom (here practice means approaching near to our true nature) and dispassion (leaving behind causes of miseries like leaving behind the house when driving to workplace).

Do we practice eating, evacuating bowels, drinking water and other daily activities? The ‘I’ is not associated with these daily actions. But the moment we think of mindfulness- we start asking unnecessary questions: how long I should practice? How many days? When and where? The mind with these questions hardly succeeds in mindfulness. The practice of mindfulness becomes habit, and soon it conditions the mind to use the practice like taking pills for relaxation. The word practice in eastern wisdom is upaya meaning approaching near to true nature.

The practice in Eastern Wisdom is approaching near to the true nature, away from ‘I’ created by the mind. The mind suffers from self-inflicted wounds of stress, anxiety, pain and fear than anything coming from outside.

The second step is detachment. We carry strong bias against the word, detachment. Because of heavy conditioning, mind thinks that by detachment, we will lose all pleasures of life. This is wrong notion about detachment. Mind clings after pleasure or pain, causes attachment. This clinging causes the mind to think, create habit pattern and swing into past and project the event and experience in the future. This attachment must go to live from moment to moment. The detachment leads to dispassion, release delusion and illusion of the mind. Therefore, two steps are basically non-practice because of absence of I-ness

The journey to mindfulness is easy, full of fun, play, and joy. The word fun means entertaining, cool and great. The word play meaning perform or work. And the word joy means happiness, ecstasy and delight. A seeker treads the path of mindfulness with fun, play and joy. A disciple finds many challenges but progressively overcome them. A student reads, understands intellectually but never translates it to experience by practice. The path is very difficult, and he has thousands of excuses for the practice. He claims he knows it, still suffers. A person who googles about mindfulness gets more confused than before. He does practice but fails. Because mindfulness is not about gathering information from google but knowing one’s mind.