The ego is a monkey catapulting through the jungle: Totally fascinated by the realm of the senses, it swings from one desire to the next, one conflict to the next, one self-centered idea to the next. If you threaten it, it actually fears for its life. Let this monkey go. Let the senses go. Let desires go. Let conflicts go. Let ideas go. Let the fiction of life and death go. Just remain in the center, watching. And then forget that you are there.
~ Lao Tzu
You are compared to quicksilver,
Because your rays are scattered.
You are compared to a deer,
Because you are unsteady.
You are compared to a monkey,
Because you jump from
One object to another.
You are compared to a bird,
Because you fly like a bird.
You are compared to a ghost,
Because you behave like a devil.
You are compared to wind
Because you are impetuous
Like the wind.
You are compared to an engine,
Because you work
When the food-fuel is supplied.
You are compared to a child,
Because you need caning.
You are compared to the reins
In the Kathopanishad;
He who holds the mind-reins tight
Can reach the Abode of Bliss.
You are compared to a dog
That strolls in the streets.
You are compared to a flower,
Because a devotee offers you to the Lord;
This is the only good compliment for you.
O Mind! Thy glory is indescribable.
Thy essential nature is all-bliss.
Thou art born of Sattva.
Thou art pure like crystal and snow.
Thy powers are ineffable.
Thou canst do anything.
Thou canst do and undo things.
Thou hast spoiled thyself
In company with Rajas and Tamas,
In friendship with the senses and objects.
Thou hast forgotten all about thy divine nature.
Bad company has tainted you.
The evil thought waves have degraded you.
You were tempted once by lust;
You have become a slave of lust now.
You were very quiet, calm and serene;
Desires have made you restless now.
You were very near the Supreme Lord once;
Worldliness has blinded thy heart
And taken you away from the Lord.
Keep company with saints and sages;
Shun the company of Rajas, Tamas and senses.
Free yourself from the taint of desires.
You can regain your original position;
You can reach your original sweet home.
For those who haven’t read the detailed articles…
Mind – Its Mysteries and Control by Sri Swami Sivananda
Finally we are about to complete our learning on “Mind – Its Mysteries and Control” by Sri Swami Sivananda in couple of weeks. Hope you had all a pleasant journey in learning about our Mind and unraveled some mysteries.
All the articles about mind are grouped under “Mind” category. I know it’s huge to go through all of them, so I am planning to sub categorize them later some time. In these final weeks we will go through some of the beautiful poems about mind by Sri Swami Sivananda which will summarize and conclude what we learned in last 11 months.
O Mind; O Mayas child!
You always want a form
To lean upon;
You have two forms
Suddha Manas, pure mind,
Asuddha Manas, impure mind.
Time, space and causation
Are thy categories.
You work through
The law of association;
You think, feel and know.
You are Soul-Energy.
You are Mental Sheath.
You are like a mirror;
Brahman is reflected on you.
You are compared to a tree:
Ego is the seed of this tree,
Thoughts are the branches,
Intellect is the first sprout.
You have another three forms
The conscious mind,
The subconscious mind,
And the superconscious mind.
You are made up of
The subtlest form of food.
You are a bundle of habits,
Impressions and Subtle desires.
You are fourfold:
Mind does Sankalpa-Vikalpa,
Subconscious mind executes,
Subconscious comes under conscious mind,
Intellect comes under Ego.
It’s all different thought waves.
Mind – Its Mysteries and Control by Sri Swami Sivananda
Bhakti yoga is one of six major branches of yoga, representing the path of self-transcending love or complete devotion to God or the divine. Bhakti yoga is based on the doctrine “Love is God and God is Love”. A practitioner of bhakti yoga regards God as being present in every person or sentient being.
The practices of Hatha Yoga and Raja Yoga are not suited to the majority of people in this age, while they have always an irresistible charm for such practices because of their apparent concreteness and promise of speedy rewards. A vast majority of persons have no good physique and robust constitution. They are weaklings. In this age, children beget children. There are baby mothers. Devotion or Bhakti Yoga is, therefore, easy and safe. Any man can repeat the Name of God. Anyone can sing His praise. Without a mother, you cannot have a son. Even so, without one-pointed or single-minded devotion, you cannot have True Knowledge. When Bhakti is fully ripe, Supreme-Knowledge dawns of itself, without much effort on the part of the aspirant.
Any Mantra is very powerful. It purifies the mind. It induces Vairagya (dispassion). It causes thought waves focusing inward. Every Mantra has a Rishi who gave it; a Deity as its informing power; the Bija or seed, a significant word which gives it a special power; a energy of the form of the Mantra, i.e., the vibration-forms set up by its sounds; the Kilaka or the pillar, that which supports and strengthens the Mantra. Kilaka is a sort of plug which conceals the Mantra-Consciousness. By constant and prolonged repetition of the Mantra with right mental attitude and concentration, the Mantra-Consciousness is awakened. There is a spiritual current in all Mantras. A Mantra takes the devotees soul first to one centre and then to another and so on, till access is gained to the goal or final region.
Nine Principles of Bhakti Yoga
The ‘Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu’ provides the following as the nine primary activities of bhakti, with the instruction that by following all or just one of these activities perfectly, the aspiring devotee can achieve pure love of God:
- Sravana. This is the Sanskrit term for listening to poems or stories about God’s virtues and mighty deeds. Sravana bhakti cannot be practiced in isolation. The devotee must hear the stories from a wise teacher and seek the companionship of holy people.
- Kirtana. This refers to the singing or chanting of God’s praises. Ram Dass has said of this form of bhakti, “When you are in love with God, the very sound of the Name brings great joy.”
- Smarana. This is remembrance of God at all times, or keeping God in the forefront of one’s consciousness. In Christian terms, smarana is what the French monk Brother Lawrence (1605–1691) meant by “the practice of the presence of God.”
- Padasevana. This form of bhakti yoga expresses love toward God through service to others, especially the sick.
- Archana. This refers to the worship of God through such external images as icons or religious pictures or through internal visualizations. The purpose of archana is to purify the heart through the love of God.
- Vandana. This refers to prayer and prostration (lying face down on the ground with arms outstretched). This form of bhakti yoga is intended to curb self-absorption and self-centeredness.
- Dasya. In dasya bhakti, the devotee regards him- or herself as God’s slave or servant, carrying out God’s commandments, meditating on the words of God, caring for the sick and the poor, and helping to clean or repair sacred buildings or places.
- Sakha-bhava. This form of bhakti yoga is a cultivation of friendship-love toward God—to love God as a member of one’s family or dearest friend, and delight in companionship with God.
- Atma-nivedana. This is the complete self-offering or self-surrender to God.
Unlike some other forms of yoga, however, bhakti yoga does not teach the devotee to completely lose his or her personal identity through absorption into the divine. God is regarded as infinitely greater than the human worshiper, even one at the highest levels of spiritual attainment.
These nine principles of devotional service are described as helping the devotee remain constantly in touch with God. The processes of chating and internal meditation on the aspirant devotee’s chosen deity form (favorite god) are especially popular in most bhakti schools.
1. Mind – Its Mysteries and Control by Sri Swami Sivananda