Saturday, January 7, 2012

Spiritual Disobedience

I had a striking epiphany this morning in meditation. I've been working lately on feeling my way out of the habitual thought-involved mind and into the still clarity of witnessing. Looking at the way in which I typically engage with thoughts it occurred to me that part of the illusion with our minds is that we listen to and identify with our every thought. We think that it is "ME" who is thinking, me who is deciding, me who is liking and disliking and wanting to go here and there and on and on. In reality, the mind is simply producing via the faculty of thought a billion thoughts all day long. Due to our fundamental belief in the illusion of thought as self, we obey almost every thought that comes into our minds. We listen to them as if they were the holy grail. "I'm fat. I'm too tall. I hate this. I love that." Etc, etc.

Why not begin disobeying? I began to try this one small measure: every time I caught myself beginning to listen to a thought in meditation, I chose to disobey the call to listen. I coupled this with the labeling technique. My attention then would be pulled towards the thought and I would respond gently with "no, no attention" and then label it "thought". What took shape was subtle and did not involve pushing thought away. It was simply a matter of deciding to take control of my own mind. There is a wisdom far greater than the intellect. The soul knows this. Open to it with effort.

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