Aware, alert, focused and attentive all similar words but the word mindful fits what I am writing about. To be mindful of our thoughts and emotions and the effect they have on our wellbeing. We need to understanding how a sensory perception or a subliminal perception triggers a thought in our mind and gives rise to waves of emotion. with this understanding we pause before these waves break.
A thought has no power of its own, till the person experiencing that thought grants it the power. Discernment is needed before we act on a thought and the emotion it gave rise to. Mindful of these thoughts and emotions, pause and realize the feeling being experienced. Unmindful of strong emotional waves breaking in our mind, we are like a ship in heavy seas off a rocky shore. Aware of these emotions in our mind we have the power to steer clear of the hazards that can wreck our life.
Aware that a wide range of thoughts and emotion can be prompted by our daily encounters. We are mindful of what is harmful and beneficial sensory input. What we surround ourselves with will reflect our thoughts, in a positive or negative way. Life today is full of distractions to be wary of, negative media reports and entertainment and unethical people create negative emotion. Such as impatience, anger, jealousy, hate, and other unhelpful emotional states to enter our mind. If mindful we pause and correct these negative thoughts. To be conscious of impatience and realize it is unproductive and if unmindful develops into anger. If anger is not controlled, like a fire it burns the one closest to it. Why do we upset ourselves in this way?
In heavy traffic impatience and anger often get out of control. Curtsy and consideration are The antidote. If someone lacks courtesy, anger is not the answer. Consideration is the answer. Perhaps the driver is under life threatening pressure, probably not, but to assume so is to lower our tension. Life is not always to our liking. We must be cooperative and obliging, going with life’s flow. Thoughts give rise to emotions, watchful of these thoughts and arising emotions gives us more control over events in our life.
Aware, alert and focused is not all, we need mindful as well. Aware and alert can avoid an accident but if we are not mindful of our thoughts and emotions we could react in a foolish way. By honking the horn in anger, alarming other drivers unnecessarily, or stick our arm out the window to make a rude gesture at the offending driver, thoughtless of passing vehicles. Unmindful we have lost our composure and our focus on what we are doing. Letting the outside sensory perceptions run our mind unconsciously is to be out of control. Mindfulness is the first step in taking control of our life.
Meditation helps one understand how thoughts can disturb us. In breathing meditation when we are concentrating on the breath we should not be upset by invasive thoughts, this is how we learn to let thoughts come and go while staying focused on what we are doing. We become mindful of what is important to us in the now and, unflustered, can return to our practice. This is the way to become tranquil and undisturbed by the unimportant.
Where do these invasive thoughts come from? If they are prompted by a noise directly experienced that is obvious. Some time they are a mystery. In our quiet secluded well-chosen meditation sanctuary, a gentle breeze touches us softly bringing the fragrance of frangipani. Concentrating on our breath we are only subliminally aware of the breeze and the scent but a thought from the past comes into our mind. We have a lifetime of memories waiting to be aroused. Mindful of pleasant or unpleasant thoughts we stay focused not distracted in this way we learn self-control.
Impatience, anger, hate and thoughts of revenge are not going to help anyone. Instead we can feel sorry for the drivers with problems. They will have accidents hurting their self or someone else. Actions always have consequences and thoughts come before actions. Those wild, angry, hateful thoughts and actions will one day hatch into monsters that will bite the one who gave them birth. No need to be the judge and executioner that is a thankless task. Kind and caring thoughts and actions will enhance our life. Meditate or sit quietly and think about being aware of emotional states as they arise in the mind. Emotional states shape our life. To be mindful and have control of our emotions will bring peace into our life.