Guiding Light: Free the mind by creating a heaven within yourself

Most of us are victims of the machinations of our minds. The mind sits over us as a tyrant and we readily consent to be its slaves. He is truly happy who has broken the thralldom of the mind — truly happy because he is truly free.

So many of our ills would be cured, if only we could change the pattern of our minds. Change the mind and you change the world. The modern world has gone astray because it lays undue emphasis on the “work” side of life. Work has its place in life, but more important than “work” is “thought”. Take care of your thoughts. Every thought is a force that we generate for our good or evil.

Is it our fault that evil thoughts come to us, from time to time? No, it is not our fault if evil thoughts come to us and tear into bits the fabric of good life which we may have gradually built.

Behind every evil thought is an evil force. When we accept evil thoughts, we, as it were, attach ourselves to dark powers; we fall into their clutches before we know it; we create “hell” for ourselves. If we think good thoughts— thoughts — of love and compassion, of beauty and joy, of faith and freedom, of peace and wisdom — we invite for ourselves good forces, forces of light and in that measure, we create “heaven” around ourselves.

“Heaven” and “Hell” are of our creation. All we need to do is to correct our thinking. In this connection, the following may be noted:

1. Perhaps, the simplest and most efficacious method of correcting our thinking is that of kirtan.

2. As you wake up in the morning, breathe out an aspiration of purity, of love, of joy, of peace, of humility, of trust — any aspiration that may express your innermost need.

3. As you retire at night, read a little from the life or teaching of a saint, a bhakta, a man of God.

4. The best way to face evil thoughts is to let them alone and to think Divine thoughts. Light dispels darkness.

5. Keep yourself relaxed at all times — both in body and in mind.

(Dada J.P. Vaswani is humanitarian, philosopher, educator, acclaimed writer, powerful orator, messiah of ahimsa, and non-sectarian spiritual leader.)

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