Sunday, February 01, 2004

The Mastery of Thought

The Mastery of Thought

I flew back to KL from Jakarta via Singapore. I like the Changi airport--I always feel very relaxed there. It is also the airport which I frequented most often during those four years when I was based out of Singapore.

I'd have loved to stop by overnight in Singapore but I had to rush back to KL to get a few things going. I promised myself to take the Senandung Malam train down south in the near future to catch up with old friends there. I haven't been there for over a year now and I miss taking the night train.

I still haven't figured out when is the best time of the day to blog in KL as I haven't settled down to a routine here yet. In Jakarta I used to blog during lunchtime or first thing in the morning on weekends. Here in KL, I always end up blogging at night. Sometimes it is quite exhausting for me to do so after having spent the whole day driving around town.

I like to spend some quiet moments at night to let the thoughts in my mind subside. Patanjali's second Raja Yoga aphorism defines Yoga as being the "cessation of all modifications or activities of the mind" or in Sanskrit: Yoga citta vrtti nirodha.

To me, it is very important not to carry any residual thoughts from one day into another. We must try to digest each day's thoughts and observe their reverberations; only in quiet reflection at night can we fully comprehend the momentum of our thoughts. Learn each day's lessons. Sometimes we are driven by pride, lust, ego or fear--unwholesome thoughts result from it. Their consequences have to be checked. A clear mind allows our inherent divinity to shine through.

In a previous blog entry, I likened thoughts to bubbles rising from the bottom of a pond. At the end of a hectic day, the mind is like a cauldron. Once we let the heat die down, the mind reveals its inner nature. We can then examine the bubbles that rise from its bottom, tracing their sources, unravelling their origins.

If we do not allow our thoughts to die down, we risk complicating the karmic consequences of our actions. All actions are but ripened thoughts. Our lives are determined by our actions, which germinated from our thoughts. The mastery of thought is the mastery of life.

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