CONTROL OF MIND
By Swami Sivananda
Life in this physical plane is a mere preparation for the eternal life of everlasting sunshine and joy which is to come when one gets knowledge of the Self through intense and constant meditation after purifying the mind. This immortal life of supreme joy is described as the 'Kingdom of Heaven' in the Bible. That Kingdom of Heaven is within you, in your heart. Realise this Immortal Life, O Susil! by controlling the mind, and enjoy the Supreme Bliss of the Self.
The secrets of Yoga Sastra can only be imparted to that student who is Jita-Indriya and Abhyasa-sura, who has devotion to Guru, who has Vairagya, discrimination, who is firm in his determination and who has strong conviction in the existence of God.
The mind is single, but it appears dual in dreaming state as the perceiver and the perceived, through the power of Maya or illusion. The mind itself takes the forms of rose, mountain, elephant, rivers, ocean, enemy, etc. Just as heat is inseparable from fire, so also fluctuation is inseparable from mind. It makes the mind restless. The fluctuation is caused by the power of Rajas. It is the fluctuation that causes Asanti (absence of peace of mind). The Bhaktas remove this tossing by Japa, Upasana and worship of Ishtadevata.
The power of fluctuation is itself the mind. This fluctuating mind alone is this world. The mind becomes no mind if fluctuation disappears. The mind ceases to exist, if it becomes destitute of this fluctuation. What is called Maya is this fluctuating potency of the mind. Mind does havocs through the power of fluctuation. Fluctuation is Mara or Satan or Vasana or Eshana or Trishna. It was this fluctuation that tempted Visvamitra. It is this fluctuation that brings about the downfall of a struggling aspirant. Destroy this fluctuation through strong Viveka, constant meditation and ceaseless Brahma-Vichara.
As soon as fluctuation manifests itself various sorts of imaginations crop up. Imagination co-exists with fluctuation. Imagination is as much dangerous as fluctuation. Fluctuation moves the mind. Imagination fattens the mind. Mind minus fluctuation and imagination is a mere zero. Fluctuation and imagination are the two wings of the mind-bird. Cut the right wing through Atmic enquiry and the left wing through the practice of thoughtlessness. The great bird-mind-will fall dead on the spot immediately.
The one dividing wall between the soul and body is mind. If this wall is broken by ceaseless Atmic enquiry, then the Jiva mixes with the Supreme Soul just as the river mixes with the ocean.
Close your eyes. Meditate. Open your heart to the inflow of the invisible power. You will find in the Bible "Empty thyself, I will fill thee". Then you will have abundant, superintuitional knowledge which is beyond the reach of intellect. Just as water freely flows when the tap is turned so also Divine Wisdom will flow freely when the obstacles of ignorance that stand in the way of knowledge are removed. You will get flashes, glimpses of the Divine inspiration, revelation and intuition. You will have to put yourself in a state of quietude by silencing all bubbling thoughts and emotions and connect the mind with the source by withdrawing the mind from sensual objects, just as you do in telephone by turning the switch off and connecting the two persons who want to speak.
All duality is of mind. The whole of duality is caused by the imagination of the mind. If all imaginations are withdrawn into the mind itself by constant practice of discrimination, Vairagya (dispassion), Sama, Dama, and Samadhana, you will not experience the dual universe. The mind will become no mind. As it has nothing to cognise, it will rest in the source, the Atman.
"My mind was elsewhere, I did not see". "My mind was elsewhere, I did not hear"; for a man sees with his mind and hears with his mind.
The attraction for objects and the ties of various sorts make the man bound to this world. Renunciation of all attractions for objects and breaking up the ties constitute real Sannyasa. That Sannyasi or Yogi who is free from attraction and ties enjoys the infinite bliss, supreme joy and eternal bliss.
The mind should be absorbed in the word Om (Pranava). That Yogi or Jnani whose mind is absorbed in Om has no fear whatever. He has reached the goal of life.
The fire of meditation rapidly consumes all evils and sins. Then there follows that knowledge of Truth which confers perfections, everlasting peace and immortality.
Stop the Vrittis through constant and steady practice. The mind will become no mind. You will attain Yogarudha State (the Absolute state). The seeds of Avidya in the form of potential tendencies which are embedded in the mind are all burnt to ashes when the mind rests in the Truth during Samadhi. The fire that burns is the fire of knowledge of Atman (Jnana-Agni, Yoga-Agni).
When the Yogi has attained the last stage of meditation, when he has entered into Asamprajnata Samadhi, he becomes a Jivanmukta in this very life.
The fire of Yogic Samadhi burns all Samskaras in toto. There are now no seeds for rebirth.