Peace - Mind
If you just stopped thinking for a while and sat back to
reflect on your own mind, you would be surprised to realise that you are at peace. Even if
you agree with me, you might argue that this peace is only temporary. So be it.
But let us look into this peaceful tranquil state,
temporary or otherwise, since it is already with us - without our having to make any
effort at all at being peaceful.
You were born with this peace-nature of the
mind; otherwise you would not be what you are, would you? You did
not run around meditating to bring about this peace to yourself:
you did not learn from someone or some book to make possible this
peaceful state in yourself. In other words, "you" had
nothing to do with it. Peace is a natural mind-state in every one
of us. Peace has been there since the day we were born and it is
going to be there till the day we die. It is our greatest gift;
so why do we think we have no peace of mind?
Experiencing peace is like looking at our hands. Usually,
we see only the fingers - not the spaces in between. In a similar manner, when we look at
the mind, we are aware of the active states, such as our running thoughts and the
one-thousand-and-one feelings that are associated with them, but we tend to overlook the
intervals of peace between them. If one were to be unhappy or sad every minute of the
twenty-four-hour day, what would happen to us? I guess we would all be in the mad house!
Then why is it that we supposedly
never are at peace? It is simply because we never allow ourselves to be so.
We enjoy battling with ourselves and our emotions so much
that the battle becomes second nature to us. And we complain that we have no peace of
Why don't we leave aside all these complicated ideas for a
while and simply contemplate this peaceful nature of ours - since we are fortunate enough
to have it - instead of frantically trying to find peace of mind some place else. How can
we find something elsewhere, when it is already in ourselves? Probably that is the reason
why we often do not find it.
We do not have to do anything to have this peace, do we?
Mind is by itself peaceful.
But we do need to do something to
our minds in order to be angry or sad.
Imagine yourself enjoying a moment of quiet. Suddenly
something disturbs your enjoyment. You start up at once, annoyed or angry at the
disturbance. Why? Because you dislike the interruption. Your mind "acts." It
dislikes. It sets up thoughts of dislike, followed by annoyance, anger and a whole series
Thought moments are extremely fast, so you don't notice the
moment of the mind setting up thoughts of dislike. We generally think that the outside
situation is what is responsible for our annoyance. But even during the most durable and
miserable experiences of our lives, we find moments when our minds are distracted from the
cause of misery and we are relatively free from the devastating emotional state. Once we
set our minds back on the event, the unpleasant feelings come rushing in again
immediately. When these emotions subside, what happens to them? We seem to take it for
granted that they end up or phase out somewhere outside of us. But if they had their
origin in the mind, they must surely end in the mind. If they had their origin in a
peaceful state, then they would surely end in that peaceful state also. It is only
Let us contemplate this peaceful state. We recognise it
before emotions have set in and also after they have disappeared. What about the
in-between times? Is peace destroyed during the time that we have been angry or sad? We
are so used to implying that this or that destroys our peace of mind that we have come to
assume that peace of mind is a contrived state that can be arrived at or deleted at will.
But this is not the case. Peace and tranquillity are part
and parcel of our own mental make up. If they are destroyed during emotional upheavals,
our minds might as well be destroyed too. Peace is the essence of our own innate nature
and can never be destroyed.
Peace is with us every single moment of our
life, but we do not recognise it. This is because we are ignorant
about peace - most of the time we are too preoccupied with the external
world and our own running thoughts and emotions to be aware of it.
We have lost touch with our inner selves, with what is the best
in us. We frantically try to find the answer outside when all the
time peace is sitting there, silently waiting until we come home