Monday, October 26, 2015

Monday Mantra: Secret #6

mantra is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that is considered capable of "creating transformation".

Every Monday I will post a new thought, idea, or focus for the week. When you need a breather from life, when you need a little inspiration, or when you're about to jump over the conference table and strangle your co-worker, remember the mantra.

Monday Mantra: Freedom tames the mind

Secret #6: Freedom Tames the Mind

The mind is the hardest part of ourselves to love because we feel trapped in it.  

Manipulation, control, denial...this is exactly how the vast majority of people try to tame the mind.

You must free yourself from decisions.

...stop concentrating on the results and look to the cause...

Everyone knows how to choose; few know how to let go. But it's only by letting go...that you make room...

No single decision you ever made has led in a straight line....

It's taken me a while to get here, mostly because this summer was widely and wonderfully busy. None the less, friends, we have arrived to Secret #6.

Chopra begins by describing the mind as an animal, a wild creature we try over and over again to tame, to trap. In doing this, we push it further to the depths of being wild because what it really wants, what we don't give it, is freedom- in this sense, a calmness and a peacefulness.

He goes on to explain samskaras, or grooves in the mind, that have been established since birth from actions we take over and over again (much like habits). He explains that when we're faced with something we don't like, we react based on these habits. We react either by manipulation, control, or denial. By acting in any one of these ways we do the complete opposite of what we should be doing to free the mind, to free ourselves. Samskaras, he also notes, are not silent. They are the thoughts in our mind, grabbing out attention and shifting our focus each and every way.

This is where it gets good, friends.

The way, he says, to set our mind free is to stop making decisions. His explanation is basically this: what you're meant to do, you'll do. He calls this Choiceless Awareness - having complete trust that by letting go, the right action will be clear before you, therefore you won't really be making a decision at all. Think of it in this way: Our ego's analyze and fret and worry over every single detail of every decision we have to make. Rarely, we just let things be and let them turn out without forcing or cajoling the situation the way we think it should be. However, the old saying "What's meant to be, will be" is exactly where he's going with this. Letting go.

To Let Go, he recommends several key things (which he goes over in great detail in the book):
-Make the most of every experience
-Don't obsess over right and wrong decisions
-Stop defending your self image
-Go beyond risks
-Make no decision when in doubt (this is my favorite)
-See the possibilities in whatever happens
-Find the stream of joy

His suggestion, for learning to let go, is to make a list of 5 "Good" Choices and 5 "Bad" choices. Then, for each one, you must find the bad that came out of the good and the good that came out of the bad. For example, let's say you quit your old job that you hated to go to your new job that you love. This would be under your "Good" choice. But in doing that, maybe your drive to work got extended or maybe there's a co-worker you don't like get along with. The point here is that regardless of how you classified a situation initially, both good and bad were present. This is how you learn to let go- breaking down the labels, as he puts it.

As with every other secret I've read, I always feel like it comes at the right time in my life. For instance, The Fiance and I are trying to decide upon a wedding venue. You'd think this would be the easiest part, but no. Oh, nooooo. He likes industrial/modern, I like greenery/outdoorsy. He likes round tables, I like long tables. You get the idea. This decision has been plaguing me. It's the one thing we have to nail down soon because A) Football season takes up all the nice months in AZ and B) The only nice remaining months get booked super far in advance. When I read this secret, everything hit home really hard. Don't obsess...go beyond...see the possibilities...OK. OK, I can do that. It's not going to happen overnight, but I can start working on getting there.

What will you work on letting go of? How will you free your mind?

P.S. There are WAY more secrets in this book than I realized. I'm going to have to speed this up a little or we are never going to get to the end in my lifetime.

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