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The Right Focus

Swami Bhoomananda Tirtha

01 June 1999

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Instead of any thought or emotion distracting you, let the process only make you know that the ‘mind’ does it. The idea of distraction is wrong. It is a sheer delusion. This delusion has to be removed. In the mind’s activity during meditation, take your attention away from the activity part and fix it on the pure Consciousness part.

Poojya Swamiji,

Pranāms. Just now I was reading your earlier letters. I shall feel blessed if more is written whenever you have time.

Swamiji, I also would like to pursue spiritual sādhanā. I have analyzed myself. The mind is the biggest problem. I cannot concentrate even for a few minutes. When I try to meditate, mind remains full of negative thoughts. Hence there is no joy. Fear and anxiety of all sorts make life dull and miserable.

I know that I alone am responsible for this miserable state and I myself will have to work hard to set matters right. Please bless me with your message.

My Prānams and remembrances to Ma and Nutan Swamiji.

Yours H.

* * *

Dear and blessed Soul H,

Harih Om Tat Sat.

I generally think of those who are devoted to truth and who are devoted to me. Naturally they will be of additional concern in my mind. You are one such seeker who occupies a tender place in my heart. I particularly think of all that you told me when you had come here for a short stay.

Dear H, as age advances the body will become weak. But the mind has to substitute the body in giving man the enthusiasm, fervour, patience and joy he needs. This will be possible only when we feed the mind with vairāgya for the world and love for the supreme Reality. God does not look for any formalities or routines. He is right from the beginning residing in the inmost recess of man, and because of this, He becomes a little difficult to access.

Anything external, directly perceptible by the senses, can easily be located. But the source of all sensory perceptions being beyond the sensory range, is difficult to locate. That is why fondness and earnestness become an indispensable need to perceive and feel the Lord in our heart. Krishna says that to be imperceptible to the senses is the indirect approach which he prefers. That which is suddenly seen is also suddenly forgotten. All our scriptural compositions have followed the indirect method.

Krishna went away from the Gopikas to Vrindavan in order to be physically inaccessible. He said, “A woman’s mind generally grows contempt for anything proximate to her externally. When I am not in front, your mind will constantly think of me, and you will find me in your heart”.

Regarding the mind’s troubled nature, here I tell you a mysterious truth. Will you grasp well, assimilate it, and be governed by it?

In the whole of creation, there are only five elements (panchabhutas). These five are there also in your body. But you have in addition one more thing, which we call Divine. The sixth factor is the Consciousness, which our scriptures define as Prajñānam. Mind is an expression of this sixth factor, Consciousness, like a flame is of fire. Mind is itself Consciousness. Start looking at it as Consciousness itself.

Thoughts and emotions emerging from Consciousness are like sparks and flames of fire. Do flames and sparks, dim the fire or the fire gets expressed through them? So too, the Consciousness is not the least affected by thinking or displaying emotions. Instead, the otherwise invisible Consciousness becomes manifest and felt by such a display.

Do not then look at thoughts or memories as disturbances, unfriendly or alien. Let them come or not, mind remains as Consciousness alone. Legs are legs whether they walk or run or sit. Think of this truth and allow all the mind-work to be on. Let the mind do its work. Be steady in your understanding that the mind as Consciousness does not flicker, move or go anywhere.

Instead of any thought or emotion distracting you, let the process only make you know that the ‘mind’ does it. The idea of distraction is wrong. It is a sheer delusion. This delusion has to be removed. In the mind’s activity during meditation, take your attention away from the activity part and fix it on the pure Consciousness part. This subtle distinction between the two should be properly understood. Therein lies the success of your sādhanā.

From the time you get this letter, no thought or emotion should become a conflict or disturbance. Let anything be. Your Consciousness will still be the same, itself. Activity, thinking, or bringing emotions (generating love, hatred or fear) does not change the essential content of the mind at all.

To make this point true, to generate the spiritual sublimity denoting this truth, go on humming “asango’ham, asango’ham, asango’ham’’ (unattached am I), taking it as a mantra. Seek refuge under its magic. Be fond of it. Cling to its strength, wisdom and solace. Take to this with full depth and fervour, casting aside all doubts and shallowness.

You need nothing else. Be sure. Nothing else. Do not doubt or fear. Until everything and all in you and around become the same Consciousness – and it is so in reality – you will never be able to transcend fear or doubt. Go to this inner sublime realization and be fearless and fulfilled.

You have my abundant blessings. Ma and Nutan Swamiji send you loving good wishes.

Your Own Antarātmā, Swamiji

– From the book–“Dear and Blessed Soul”

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“ Swamiji, I also would like to pursue spiritual sādhanā. I have analyzed myself. The mind is the biggest problem. I cannot concentrate even for a few minutes. When I try to meditate, mind remains full of negative thoughts. ”

“Thoughts and emotions emerging from Consciousness are like sparks and flames of fire. Do flames and sparks, dim the fire or the fire gets expressed through them? So too, the Consciousness is not the least affected by thinking or displaying emotions. ”

“Activity, thinking, or bringing emotions (generating love, hatred or fear) does not change the essential content of the mind at all.”

“As age advances the body will become weak. But the mind has to substitute the body in giving man the enthusiasm, fervour, patience and joy he needs.”

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