So right now you decided to read this sentences of collected words. On the other hand, you got so many things to do, might be cleaning up your room, might be studying. Oh God! Think about it, how you are gonna arrive all those stuff to do?*
Besides, did you remember the last time you were disgraced? I do not get it how can you still look at people’s faces. What about your ex? Could you really forget him/her? Whereas, how beautiful memories you spent together. If only it wouldn’t be like this. Maybe you should not have broken up. **
The examples given above represent our thoughts taken from our daily lives. We are not being able to live the present moment by being imprisoned either in the past or in the future. Think about it, when was the last time your mind was clean? When was the last time you did not think about anything at all? Our thoughts are distracting us, sometimes they want to take us over, and the voices inside of our heads do not know how to shut up just like a non-stop working noisy machine.
The reality is that your thoughts do not define you. You are more than that. You are not your thoughts. You have to be free from them and to find yourself. And, you can only find yourself by focusing on the present moment.
You are not your thoughts. You have to be free from them and to find yourself. And, you can only find yourself by focusing on the present moment.
Well, how can we be free from our thoughts?
Step 1: Be free from your thoughts
First of all, we have to accept the fact that what makes us ‘us’ are not our thoughts. The belief that one is made of their body and of their thoughts has been called as ‘the illusion of the self’ by Buddha. The ‘I’ and to ‘be yourself’ is much more different from our thoughts; our thoughts are only there to distract us. When it comes to being free from the thoughts, we can start by doing a little experiment:
1)Close your eyes –if you want – and ask yourself: ‘I wonder what my next thought is going to be?’ and wait for your next thought, just like a cat waiting to catch a mouse.
2) When the thought comes, just watch it, do not judge or analyze. By watching it you will realize that they want to continue without stopping. The idea behind watching our thoughts is accepting them as they are and letting them go without judging them.
If this is your first time doing this practice, probably watching your thoughts only lasted few seconds. However, by doing this all the time, your thoughts will no longer control you, this is the first step of you controlling your thoughts. Imagine like you put a barrier, or, a door into your mind, and when the thought knocks the door, it is up to you whether you will welcome it to come or not.
Step 2: Focus on the present moment
The moment you are not allowing your thoughts to enter in your mind is the moment of truly ‘being’ yourself, the moment when your mind is clean from all those thoughts is the moment you are living in the present. Note that attention does not mean you start thinking about it. It means just to observe the emotion, to feel it fully, and so to acknowledge it and to accept it as it is.
1) Focus on your breathing: This practice is most effective by closing your eyes and having a straight body posture. The air is taken deeply from the outside to the inside through the nose and is thrown away through the mouth. In this process, the full attention is on the breathing and the way it comes within and goes outside. When I first found this practice as difficult to do, I used to use my imagination. By closing my eyes, I used to imagine the air coming from outside as being colorful as a rainbow and putting all of my attention on how I was breathing that colorful air deeply into my windpipe, and how the colorful air was spreading to the outside –to the whole world- by exhaling. Also, sometimes I was imagining that there was a shining diamond inside of my windpipe that was going to the roof when I used to inhale and going to the top while exhaling. You can also try this.
2) Focus on to the bodily sensations: For example, every time you walk up and down the stairs, pay close attention to every step, every movement, even your breathing. When you wash your hands, or while taking a shower, pay attention all the sense perceptions associated with the activity of the sound and feel the water, the movement of your hands, the scent of the soap and so on.
3) Focus on the silence: Pay more attention to the silence than to the sounds. Paying attention to the outer silence creates inner silence: the mind becomes still. For example, during a conversation, become conscious of the gaps between words, the brief silent intervals between sentences.
More or less all psychological diseases result from the individual’s inability to control their thoughts, because our thoughts are always future-oriented, or trapped in the past; and this makes us sick. Let’s think about someone having anxiety problems, these individuals are usually being imprisoned into their future-oriented negative thoughts, they cannot control them and this turns into a continuous disease. If you do not want to be one of those, if you do not want your thoughts to take you over and to live the life to its fullest, practice the given tips above and share this with your surroundings.
For a better world! 🙂
* your anxious thoughts about the future
** your thoughts being trapped in the past
Copyright: Dream Humanity