OM SARI HUM
The mind is what has to be watched, at every moment of the day. From it, the day becomes! There arises all kinds of thoughts, ideas and conceptions that will develop different mental states. Actually each day is the same, never good nor bad, but just a day! The Minds of the people make it fine, or otherwise and therefore believe that ‘this is a fine day’ and ‘this is a terrible day’ for them. It cannot be that a day which is wonderful for a great many can be very miserable for a multitude of others. The differences in mental states and understanding make it so different, when it is just any other day. For this reason, those who seek to have fine days must learn to discover where their sources of happiness and misery come from. And if only they will easily discover that it is the mind! The mind has therefore to be understood, watched and pacified. This is the heart of practice! In watching the mind, one begins to know oneself better, one begins to understand others better. Then selfish tendencies can be dropped.
The whole universe is One Mind, and each of us is but an aspect of the Mind which is originally pure and calm. But we are no longer in this state of Great Calm, we have an agitated mind which is under the influence of various factors. So we are pulled by the strings of our emotions which are themselves excited by many other conditions.
In the end, where is the great peace that the mind originally was? This causes the false notion of the arising of the ‘ego’, the ‘I’, which is made up by the play of (the five aggregates comprising) feelings, perceptions, mental formations and consciousness and experienced through the body. Even though there is an infinite number of beings, there is no chance of two beings sharing the same and exact quality of mind and body. That makes each individual an unique being, a very special being. So we should learn to appreciate their uniqueness and also realise the parts that all must play. All beings therefore make up the Whole, all are therefore inter-related. Together they make up Existence! All must therefore work towards the well-being of others. This is the true practice!
One begins to know what mind is by practising meditation which is the base for the arising of wisdom. It is not a very difficult exercise to be aware of one’s own breathing, the ‘in’ and ‘out’ of each breath. With constant practice, the mind will be completely absorbed in the breathing and then all distracting thoughts will cease. With the full awareness of the breath, knowing its beginning, middle and end, one’s mind will experience a peaceful state.
This is called the calming of the mind which leads to greater practice. It is peace that each being is really after, not just a healthy, wealthy and long life. But even this simple truth has not been realised and so everyone is so busy striving for all the wrong causes of happiness in the forms of worldly gains. In the process, their minds become clouded by desires caused by greed, anger and delusion. Their minds become degenerated. They will do things which will bring about misery, no peaceful mental state may be attained.
Think of peace. How wonderful it would be if all beings in the universe can have peace of mind which is the true cause of all happiness. Act on wanting to attain peace. Do not look outside for it. Going to a wonderful place of retreat may give one a sense of peace, but it is only an aid to developing peace. Look within, look at the mind! Train it yourself! The whole world is talking about peace. Thousands of bodies are working towards peace. Has any of them succeeded in any way? Peace is within each individual. Only an individual may attain it through effort. A peaceful mind is the base for the success for spiritual practice, for with it, one easily develops contentment and the energy to accept the rigid disciplines of practice. When peace is felt, the world is beautiful!
Wednesday, 29th October 1986
9th Moon, 26th Day