Our Biggest Enemy is the Mind. It is the closest entity that we have to ourselves, even though Mind does not carry a shape or quality that can be perceived by our senses. The mind constantly watches us from birth till the end. It keeps distracting us and confusing us from reaching our life goals and binds us to the Samsara of Life and Death for lifetimes together. The right understanding and vision can help break the spell of Mind and allow us to emerge successfully from Maya – the illusion created by Mind. Devotion is the greatest means in Kali Yuga to finally emerge successfully from the Mind Prison.
(Image Credit: Craig Sunter)
Spell of the Gunas
Mind is constantly keeping score of our Gunas – Sat, Rajas and Tamas. Even Satguna can be detrimental to our progress, although we consider Goodness to be a very great ideal to look up to. Our Gunas are our ticket to coming lifetimes. It does not break the cycle of rebirths, life and death. A lot of Vedic Karmas and Sattvic Gunas may yield us a birth among the Devas or highly evolved human beings. But, it is still not liberation. On the other hand, a life spent in Rajasic and Tamasic qualities may push us to Animal births or among unfortunate humans, where life can be a huge struggle.
The lightest of realisation which helps us know where we are and what we are may help us raise from life challenges. The truth that leads us to the realisation and the experience that awakens us to evolution may be so simple and easy. But, the grace that allows us to step into such a seeing may take time to really reach us. Devotion is the most potent route to reach that goal in the present Kali Yuga.
The behaviour of Mind is one of constant chasing. In the waking state, the mind chases after material possessions and positions. In the dream state, we chase after subtler objects. When we wake up from our sleep, we realise the subtle objects that we chased after in our dreams were not real. Shastras say that our waking state is also not that different from sleep. All that is required is to awaken from this “waking sleep”. It is quite possible that we have been sleeping through lifetimes of centuries. Once we awaken ourselves, we are no longer slaves of Mind, but Masters of our thoughts and actions.
11 Vehicles of Mind
There are 11 vehicles that Mind travels through. These are the 11 core routes that mind catches us with. Awakened beings realise the value of these 11 routes and maintain high alert with respect to what travels through these vehicles.
- Intellect or Consciousness
- Sound (2 to 6 through Jnana Indriyas – Sense Organs)
- Excretory Organs
- Sexual Organs
- Spoken Word (7 to 11 through Karma Indriyas – Action Organs)
Omnipresence of Atman
We realise that Air is present everywhere on this planet. It is outside of us in the atmosphere and inside of us as well in our lungs and our blood. This Air makes inanimate bodies come to life. In fact, the Atman (The Self) is much more subtler than Air itself that causes life to be. Atman does not participate in life by listening to our minds or enhancing our desires. Atman exists as the root of everything without favouring or pushing anyone.
Till beings realise Atman within us and melt in its silence, they reincarnate as many times as required in human form and otherwise. The biggest hindrance to Atman Realisation is the Mind that creates feeling of “I” and “Mine”. It creates the distinction that something needs to be done and something else should not be done. It is this that creates greed and want. It is Mind that creates competition within us.