11. The mysterious connecting link
Often people wonder “I am doing everything, but nobody is helping me or co-operating”. To find why so, we need to go deeper to understand the workings of human mind.
Universe consists of matter and energy. They cannot be destroyed completely but can be transformed from one into other. For example we can burn wood and convert into energy in the form of heat. A seed becomes a huge tree by converting energy taken from the Sun, air, water and nutrients.
Albert Einstein’s equation E = mc2 means “energy equals mass times the speed of light squared.” Thus m = E/c2. Let us assume ‘e’ energy as mind, ‘c’, light as consciousness and ‘m’ mass as matter or physical body for the purpose of our learning.
We humans are made of five elements – earth, water, fire, air and space. Thought is a form of energy and hence we can use the words thought- energy and mind interchangeably. Here we can understand the logic about how thoughts have creative power to become things such as aircrafts and computers and events such as wars and independence. We know the science of converting matter such as fuel and food into energy. Now we are learning how to convert thought-energy into things that we desire to achieve.
The functions of mind are produced by the below two parts.
- The “Conscious Mind”: When you say, ‘I see—I hear—I smell—I touch – I taste,’ it is your conscious mind that is saying this, for it is the ruler of five physical senses. Perceiving and operating through the five physical senses, the conscious mind deals with the impressions and objects of the outward life. It is the part of mind with which you reason. It discriminates between right and wrong. Thus it carries with it the responsibility of using freewill.
The tanmatras are the ways in which the objective world is sensed by us.
‘Tan’ means subtle and ‘matra’ means element. The five elements manifest in the functioning of the five senses. The five tanmatras and their corresponding senses are hearing (ear), touching (perception with skin), seeing (eye), taste (tongue), and smell (nose).
Each element is related primarily to one tanmatra but can contain a portion of the others as explained below.
- Ether/space comes out of shabda (sound) tanmatra – Ear
- Air out of shabda (sound) and sparsha (touch) tanmatras – Ear and skin
- Fire out of shabda (sound), sparsha (touch) and rupa (sight) tanmatras – Ear, skin and eye
- Water out of shabda (sound), sparsha (touch), rupa (sight) and rasa (taste) – Ear, skin, eye and tongue
- Earth out of shabda (sound), sparsha (touch), rupa (sight) and rasa (taste) and gandha (smell) – Ear, skin, eye, tongue and nose
2. The “Subconscious Mind”: The subconscious mind does not engage in the process of reasoning or using freewill. It never sleeps or rests, any more than our heart does. It has below three functions:
- On the physical side, it is the source of regular and vital processes such as breathing, preservation of one’s own life, desire to procreate life through offspring, caring for offspring etc.
- On the mental side, it is the storehouse of memory, habits and emotions.
- On the spiritual side, it is the source of ideals, ambitions, aspirations, etc
Because conscious mind is responsible to interact with outer world, it is supposed to guard the subconscious mind. Thus the subconscious mind relies upon the conscious mind, “the watchman at the gate”, to guard it from impressions and objects of outside world.
The conscious mind or ‘guard’ is supposed to be on duty all the time you are awake. When the ‘guard’ is off duty, or when his sound judgment is impeded, under a variety of circumstances, then the subconscious mind is unguarded and left open to suggestions from all sources. This knowledge combined with techniques such as sleep deprivation, information overload is called brainwashing – and used on captured enemy soldiers, followers of cults etc.
It is important at all times to keep your conscious mind on alert and use your freewill, without being controlled by outward forces. Under severe influence of alcohol and drugs, the conscious mind becomes off duty. Then the unguarded subconscious mind may cause destruction to its master.
During the wild excitement of panic, or during the height of anger, or the impulses of the irresponsible mob, or at any other time of unrestrained passions, the conditions are most dangerous. The subconscious mind is then
open to the suggestions of fear, anger, hatred, greed and other negative forces, derived from surrounding persons or circumstances. A trained conscious mind can entirely prevent all these negative influences by its vigilant protection.
Conscious mind is the general in charge of all your mental forces. It can either lead towards goals or it can drift along haphazardly. Then it is a mere creature of impulse, at the mercy of events just like a piece of wood washed away in the flood of life.
You wouldn’t expect much from an army, no matter how fine its soldiers, whose general never planned ahead, who distrusted his own ability and that of his men, and who spent all his time worrying about the enemy instead of planning how to conquer them. In the same way, you can’t expect results from the subconscious mind when your conscious mind is full of fears or worry, or when it does not know what it wants.
The one most important duty of conscious mind is to center your thoughts on the thing you want, and to shut the door on every suggestion of fear or negative thoughts. If you once gain the ability to do that, nothing else is impossible to you.
Imagine that there are two worlds existing.
- The outer world – which we can perceive with five sensory organs of eyes, ears, nose, skin and tongue. We communicate with this world through conscious mind.
- There is a world inside us – a world of emotions such as love, hope, anger, hatred, desire, greed, jealousy. We communicate with this world through the subconscious mind. It is also through the subconscious mind that we are connected with the Cosmic Mind.
The outside world is a reflection of the world inside. Everything which you find in the outer world has been created by thoughts generated in the inner world. Aircraft was invented from the desire that the humans should be able to fly like birds. New nations were born or wars were waged out of thoughts of a few people.
Every thought therefore is a cause and every condition (such as aircraft or war) an effect. For this reason it is absolutely essential that you control your thoughts so as to bring forth only desirable conditions.
Thought is ‘energy’ and application of knowledge is ‘power’. Thought energy combined with power of knowledge and concentrated on a definite purpose becomes a force. This is the force which is being used by those who do not believe in the virtue of being defeated, oppressed or abused.
It is the understanding of above two worlds and achieving their coordination, which is the great mystery of life. Mastering this complex function can completely alter the circumstances in your life and those around you. Your success depends in exact proportion to your ability to discover and use energy, power and force.
A majority of people focus on the outer world; few have found the inner world. Most men try to change effects by repairing effects. They fail to see that this is simply changing one form of problem into another problem. To remove the effect, we must remove the cause, and this cause can be found only in the inner world.
We cannot use a weapon effectively unless we know how to control it. Similarly, we cannot use force, unless we know its existence and applications. Our destiny is entirely within our control of thoughts and use of freewill.
Control over conscious mind helps subconscious mind to develop positive emotions such as faith and love and brings out the best as demonstrated by Gandhiji. Lack of control over conscious mind lets subconscious mind for influences such as hatred, anger, revenge and brings out the worst as demonstrated by Adolf Hitler.
Thoughts which go out from one’s mind imprint themselves deeply in one’s subconscious mind, where they serve as a magnet attracting thoughts of similar nature – positive or negative. Here we can understand the truth, why minds with criminal thoughts attract the association of other criminal minds and they become more dangerous after coming out of prisons.
It is very important to be associated with good people and this association is called ‘satsanga’. In Gandhiji’s childhood few friends attempted to turn him to bad habits. He shortly fell victim to them and then corrected himself. When a tiny plant is growing, it has to be protected by a fence from animals. But when it grows into a huge tree, it gives shelter and protection to many animals. Similarly people should shield themselves from negative influences in the early stages of development.
Swami Vivekananda beautifully explained the meaning of satsanga as below.
‘The rain drop from the sky: If it is caught in hands, it is pure enough for drinking. If it falls in a gutter, its value drops so much that it can‘t be used even for washing the feet. If it falls on hot surface it perishes. If it falls on a lotus leaf, it shines like a pearl and finally, if it falls on oyster it becomes it
becomes a pearl. The drop is the same, but its existence and value depend on with whom it associates. Always be associated with people who are good at heart.’
It is also a well-known fact that emotions or ‘feelings’, rule the majority of people. Only emotionalized thoughts, rather than rational thoughts have more influence upon the subconscious mind. The emotions may be compared to yeast in a loaf of bread, because they constitute the action element, which transforms thought impulses from the passive to the active state.
You are preparing yourself to influence and control the “inner audience” of your subconscious mind, in order to hand over to it the desire, which you wish transmuted into its physical equivalent. Therefore it is essential that you understand the method of approach to this “inner audience.”
You must speak its language, or it will not heed your call. It listens only to heart, because it understands best the language of emotions or feelings. Let us, therefore describe here the major positive emotions, and the major negative emotions, so that you may draw upon the positives, and avoid the negatives, when giving instructions to your subconscious mind.
Below are the major positive emotions.
- Noble desires
There are other positive emotions, but these are the most powerful, and the ones most commonly used in creative effort. If we master these emotions by constant use the other positive emotions will be at our command when we need them.
Below are the major negative emotions, which are also called arishadvargas.
- Kama (Lust, selfish desires)
- Krodha (anger)
- Lobha (greed)
- Moha (attachment)
- Mada (arrogance)
- Matsarya (jealousy)
Positive and negative emotions cannot occupy the mind at the same time. One or the other must dominate. It is your responsibility to make sure that positive emotions constitute the dominating influence of your mind.
Here the law of habit will come to your aid. Develop the habit of applying and using the positive emotions! Eventually, they will dominate your mind so completely, that the negatives cannot enter it. Fear, a state of mind will be explained in detail later.
Thus the subconscious mind is the connecting link between the finite mind of man and Infinite Intelligence of God. It is the intermediary through which one may draw upon the forces of Infinite Intelligence. It alone contains the process by which thought impulses are modified and changed into their physical equivalent. It alone is the medium through which our prayers may be transmitted to the source capable of answering prayers.
After you have accepted, as a reality, the existence of the subconscious mind, and understand its possibilities as a medium for transmuting your desires into their physical equivalent, you will comprehend the full significance of the instructions given in the topic on desire.
You will also understand why you have been repeatedly told to make your desires clear, and to put them in writing. You will also understand the necessity of persistence in carrying out instructions. Sub-conscious mind acts as the connecting link between an individual’s finite mind and Infinite Cosmic Mind.
Do not become discouraged, if you cannot do this upon the first attempt. Remember, your subconscious mind keeps functioning, whether you make any effort to influence it or not. If you fail to plant positive thoughts in your subconscious mind, it will feed upon the negative thoughts which reach it as the result of your negligence.
For the present, it is sufficient if you remember that you are living daily, in the midst of all manner of thought impulses which are reaching your subconscious mind, without your knowledge. Some of these impulses are negative, some are positive. You are now engaged in trying to shut off the flow of negative impulses, and to aid involuntarily influencing your subconscious mind, through positive impulses of desire. When you achieve this, you will possess the key which unlocks the door to your subconscious mind. Moreover, you will control that door so completely, that no undesirable thought may influence your subconscious mind.