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Weekly Theme for Contemplation: Training the Mind

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    Profile photo of ModeratorTN
    ModeratorTN
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       Weekly Theme for Contemplation: Training the Mind

    “To think and live universally — the height of true individuation — necessitates a purificatory discipline.”  — Aquarian Almanac

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Weekly Theme for Contemplation: Training the Mind

  • Profile photo of ModeratorTN
    ModeratorTN
    Keymaster
    Profile photo of ModeratorTNModeratorTN

    August 12, 2017 Weekly Theme for Contemplation: Training the Mind

    Imagination is one of the most potent faculties,
    for it enables us to reach nearer to realities.
    — APOLLONIUS

    If thy Faith is entire
    Press onward, for thine eye
    Shall see thy heart’s desire.
    — ROBERT BRIDGES

  • Profile photo of ModeratorTN
    ModeratorTN
    Keymaster
    Profile photo of ModeratorTNModeratorTN

    August 13, 2017 Theme for Contemplation: Training the Mind

    Good resolutions are mind-painted pictures of good deeds; fancies, day-dreams,
    whisperings of the buddhi to the manas. — MAHATMA K. H.

    To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield. — ALFRED, LORD TENNYSON

  • Profile photo of Gerry Kiffe
    Gerry Kiffe
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    Profile photo of Gerry KiffeGerry Kiffe

    The lower mind, the mind we are most familiar with, is the battleground, it is where the great challenge lies. It does not need to be destroyed, it needs to be tamed. So where do we begin?

    • Profile photo of Pavel Axentiev
      Pavel Axentiev
      Participant
      Profile photo of Pavel AxentievPavel Axentiev

      Great point, Gerry.

      As my experience with the Fourth Way shows (and I view the practices of the latter as a necessary pre-requisite for true esoteric work, which I equate with Theosophy), training the mind is key to any further progress.

      To be fair, there are various techniques of training the mind, which are shared by many traditions. But the gist of it comes to what is especially pertinently emphasized in the Fourth Way, and that is never-ending, constant effort and attention.

      One of the greatest obstacles to development in the Fourth Way is called ‘imagination.’ This term is given a different meaning in the Fourth Way, namely, something which occurs without our control. There are two major subdivisions of imagination: one is also called “the inner dialogue” – the never-ending flow of thoughts that encompasses most of our daily life. These thoughts are largely insignificant, mundane, of a very primitive quality. Learning to control this flow is perhaps the first thing that a student should learn.

      Another aspect of imagination is thinking about things that we know nothing about. This is equivalent to inner lying. Of course, this is different from psychic perception and other similar higher faculties. But the central “dogma” of the Fourth Way is that we have to unlearn the habits that we have before we can gain access to this higher method of perception.

      Yet another aspect of training the mind should be addressing negative thinking. This can be seen as part of imagination, but in reality we get so involved in negative thoughts, that the aspect of imagination being “something that occurs mechanically, without our active participation,” no longer applies. Negative thinking truly makes our lives miserable to the point of being utterly destructive.

      Many tools can be used to address each of the above, which almost requires a separate post.

      I hope that this is not seen as a diversion. I believe that the practical tools of the Fourth Way can greatly benefit students of Theosophy. Both of these systems (Theosophy and Fourth Way) seem to come from the same source – the great Brotherhood, the Inner Circle of humanity, and they greatly complement each other.

      • Profile photo of barbara
        barbara
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        Profile photo of barbarabarbara

        We observe and can categorize our positive as well as negative thoughts in many different ways. The Yoga Sutras classified them in five broad divisions – right knowledge, wrong knowledge, fancy, sleep, and memory and each falls under either painful or non=painful. Various schools have different methods to deal with negative thoughts and ways to calm the lower mind. Perhaps, if we have a better understanding of the nature of our thinking principle, we can have better control of the lower mind or kama manas. I wonder if we can view the lower mind as a reflection of the higher mind since, in a way, there is just one Mind expressing itself on different planes? The thoughts in our lower mind is very intertwined with physical forms and images. Often, it is kama that is the cause of torrent of uncontrolled thoughts. When kama is subdued and transmuted, the mind can become clear and focused.

        • Profile photo of Pavel Axentiev
          Pavel Axentiev
          Participant
          Profile photo of Pavel AxentievPavel Axentiev

          Yes, kama probably plays a part in it.

          For the alchemical transformation of the lower mind/kama into its higher counterpart, an additional element may be required. Generally speaking, such transformation seems to involve a kind of meditation. More specifically, can there be a meditation that you can practice at any moment you remember and feel such need?

          • Profile photo of barbara
            barbara
            Participant
            Profile photo of barbarabarbara

            Transformation requires a change of being that takes place in our emotions, our thoughts, our attitudes, our values, and our consciousness; in short, it is multi-dimensional. All these can be viewed under the process of purification and character development. One has to eventually rise up to the impersonal and universal state to free ourselves from ignorance. Meditation is one important facet of the aforementioned discipline. If we borrow the steps of meditation from the Yoga Sutras, which is, dharana – dhyana – samadhi (concentration, meditation, absorption), then it may require a quiet setting where one can better withdraw from the senses.

  • Profile photo of ModeratorTN
    ModeratorTN
    Keymaster
    Profile photo of ModeratorTNModeratorTN

    August 14, 2017 Theme for Contemplation: Training the Mind

    In order to exclude from the mind questionable things, the mental calling up of
    those things that are opposite is efficacious for their removal. — PATANJALI

  • Profile photo of ModeratorTN
    ModeratorTN
    Keymaster
    Profile photo of ModeratorTNModeratorTN

    August 15, 2017 Weekly Theme for Contemplation: Training the Mind

    Even though myself unborn, of changeless essence, and the lord of all existence,
    yet in presiding over nature–which is mine–I am born but through my own
    maya, the mystic power of self-ideation, the eternal thought in the eternal mind.
    — SHRI KRISHNA

    Ripeness is all. — WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE

© 2017 Universal Theosophy

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