When the mind is a hurdle no more
We speak from the other shore
The mind can be a hurdle or a bridge. We cannot do without the mind, whether it is a worldly or a spiritual quest. For most of us, it is a struggle to get along with the mind consistently. When thoughts are pleasant and match desires and expectations, we feel weightless and happy. But just as the weather may turn unexpectedly, another set of thoughts may be unpleasant. They weigh us down and anchors us to misery.
What we speak reflects how we feel. Our speech can heal or hurt. It is essential to have control over what we say. When we get closer to our true nature, what we say will have more power and meaning. But first, we will need to turn the mind from a hurdle to a bridge.
Through meditation and non-judgmental awareness—both are complementary—the mind becomes a beneficial pool of energy and not a troublesome obstacle.
Meditation is the art of weeding the mind and ridding it from conditioned thoughts. Such thoughts create discontinuity. Some are islands of happiness, and others are of misery. They trap our awareness in an endless cycle of likes and dislikes.
Meditation breaks the barriers between these thoughts. The mind’s energies become free and pliable and one continuous stream. This takes our awareness from individual thoughts and their contents to the space in which these manifest and dissolve. That space is the bridge to our true nature.
A meditative mind is like a garden. A beautiful, well-manicured yard takes significant effort to create and maintain. If we let it go unattended for a few weeks, weeds inevitably take over. Through meditation, the mind loses its ‘weeds’ of rigid conditioning, and its hidden splendor reveals itself.
A gardener does not create flowers and plants out of thin air but helps grow them from dormant seeds. Similarly, meditation does not create an experience we may crave but allows the natural beauty of the mind to blossom. The seed is already within us. By tending to the mind daily through meditation practice, we prevent conditioning from taking over the mental field.
In contrast to a perfectly maintained garden, a forest does not need gardeners to manage its growth. Nature does it for us. The meditative mind is like a garden. The world is like a forest, it thrives on its own. We cannot impose our will on the world, it continues in accordance with its design. A meditative mind does not expect anything from the world. It frees awareness to enjoy the world in its native state, without judging it as good or bad.
As we loosen our attachment to the mind through meditation and awareness, we cross over to our true nature, the ‘other shore.’ From that shore, we can enjoy the world without getting entangled in our experiences. It is like enjoying a forest from a distant scenic viewpoint.
When we speak from our true nature, our words will not filter through the lens of conditioning but from a spontaneous inspiration from the depths of our hearts. Such speech will be appropriate for the situation, without hurting others. Our words will be in the best interests of all.
The ‘other shore’ is the land of silence. The mind cannot reach that place. When we quieten the mind through meditation, awareness merges with inner silence from where bliss blossoms. Our words will reflect that inner silence and bliss.