Beginning to Meditate ?
Lesson 2 - Becoming "Ruler of the Mind"
The experienced meditator seeks out the unwholesome areas within himself, endeavoring to expose and rid himself of each knot of karma. The beginning meditator may be shocked and shrink from even continuing the practice of meditation as his inner mind plays back unhappy thoughts that impose themselves upon his peace. Many stop meditating altogether at this point and turn instead to the distractions of modern life for solace.
But true meditation happens because of soul evolution. We evolve into meditative practices from bhakti, the yoga of devotion. The transition is earned through past good karmas, not chosen as an intellectual or recreational pastime. As the transition of external worship to internal worship is made, the devotee has to face all bad karmas cheerfully and honestly in order to resolve them and move forward.
Sitting in a state of real meditation, one must be more alive and alert than a tight-rope walker suspended without a net, on a taut cable 300 feet above the Earth. Do you suppose that this man is sleepy, that he allows his mind to wander? No, every muscle and sinew of his body, every thought, every feeling within him is absolutely under his control. It is the only way he can maintain the balance which keeps him from plunging
to the Earth beneath. He must be the master of himself, all the while seeking to identify with his pure soul being, not allowing attention to be pulled here and there--to the physical body, to outside sounds, to thoughts of the past or to concerns about the future.
In meditation, you will feel the same intensity of purpose as the tight-rope walker. Every atom in your being must be alive, every emotion under control, every thought seeking to impose itself upon your mind set aside until your purpose is accomplished. If the man three hundred feet up in the air feels a gust of wind coming against him, he must exercise perhaps a hundred times more will and concentration to remain poised in his precarious condition. Likewise, in meditation your mind may be intensely concentrated upon a particular object or thought, and yet you find an opposing thought seeking to divert your attention. The opposing thought may simply be a wind from your subconscious. You must then put more effort into the object of your concentration so that the opposing thoughts will be set aside and not have power to topple your balance. Upon entering a state of meditation, one may find that awareness is enmeshed in a struggle between two states of mind: the subconscious of the past and the conscious, external, waking state concerned with the present and future. The experienced meditator learns that he is the watcher, pure awareness. When concentration is sustained long enough, he dives into the superconscious, intuitive state of mind. It enables the meditator, in time, to unravel the mystery. An integrated, one-pointed state of being is the goal--a state of inner perception without vacillation, with the ability to move awareness through the mind's various states at will. To become the ruler of the mind is the goal. To then go beyond the mind into the Self is the destiny of all living on this planet, for most in a life to come.
Meditation can be sustained only if one lives a wholesome life, free from emotional entanglements and adharmic deeds. Intensive, consistent meditation dispels the antagonistic, selfish, instinctive forces of the mind and converts those channels of energy into uplifted creative action. The same force works to make either the saint or the sinner. The same force animates both love and hate. It is for the devotee to control and direct that one force so that it works through the highest channels of creative expression. When this soul force is awakened, the refined qualities of love, forgiveness, loyalty and generosity begin to unfold. In this ascended state of concentrated consciousness, the devotee will be able to look down on all the tense conditions and involvements within his own mind from a view far "above" them. As the activity of his thoughts subsides, he begins to feel at home in that pure state of being, released from his identification with and bondage to lower states of mind. A profound feeling of complete freedom persists.
Meditation is similar to watching the play of light and pictures on television. Identify with the pictures, and emotion is experienced. Identify with the light, and peace is experienced. Both light and energy forms have their source in God. Begin this evening, while watching the news on TV, by keeping awareness more within the light than the pictures. By all means, begin this ancient, mystical art, but as you progress, don't be surprised when regrets, doubts, confusions and fears you hardly knew you remembered loom up one by one to be faced and resolved. Perform the vasana daha tantra: simply write down all the regrets, doubts, confusions and fears in as much detail as possible, then burn the paper in a fire place or garbage can. Claim the release
from the past impression that this tantra imparts. Begin searching within now.