The mind is wild. My favorite analogy when discussing meditation with new practitioners and experienced alike is that of training a puppy. When we are training a puppy we must be gentle yet firm, this is the exact approach we must have with the mind. Without training our minds, our thoughts will take over. The mind has no place of rest, no home base. We instead have "monkey mind" as Suzuki Roshi so well described, where our mind jumps from thought to thought, without stability or a frame of reference. This is how the mind becomes dull and bored, insatiable and irritated. And this bored, irratitated insatiable mind is what we build our lives off of, what we use to make decisions and who we perceive ourselves to be. We inadvertently train ourselves to look for outside stimulus again and again which leads us down a path of reaction and repetition, over and over again.
In Buddhism and Yoga, the skill we practice is in bringing the mind back again and again to the breath. When you practice this technique regularly, you begin to build that foundation of steadiness of the mind. This is where you will find your calm resolve, clarity, patience and space. First and foremost, we must cultivate a steady, balanced mind. Next we bring in insight meditation were we begin to watch our thoughts. We start to see things how they truly are and when we can see clearly, we begin to behave clearly. The key is all in the foundation you wrap around this practice which is gentle and kind. You are not here to fight your ego, but to realize you are not your ego. The ego is, but you are not the ego. If you only practice this occasionally, taking yoga and meditation classes here and there without deepening your practice, you will never find this respite, you will continue your search of insatiability, becoming ever restless and frustrated again and again. You may even lose hope and give up. The answer is to deepen - you must go deeper, practice with a teacher and sangha. Be kind and gentle to your wild mind - this is the only way to find peace and tranquility. It is not through force and competition, achievement and success. To realize egolessness, we must let go. As wise Morpheus said in the Matrix, "It's the difference between knowing the path and walking the path."
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