How to Enjoy Apples
“It is inexplicable how man overlooks everything that is beyond the scope of his five sense organs; how turbulence is preferred to peace; how one’s own rationality and wisdom get obscured by the powerful sense stimuli.”
Why does it happen that ninety percent of our life passes by unattended—we remain lost most of the times? The biggest tragedy is that we do not know, most of the times, that we are lost in our own involuntary thoughts. It seldom happens that we pay any attention to what goes on in our own minds!
There are two ways you can eat an apple. Take the apple, unaware you have taken the apple; cut it into four, unaware that you have cut it into four; take it towards your mouth, unaware you have taken towards your mouth; put it into your mouth, unaware you have put it into your mouth; eat it, unaware you are eating it and you do not come to know the taste of the apple also; gulp the pulp down, unaware you have gulped the pulp down.
The Backward Link
Let us the simple awareness exercise. Just for ten minutes, make a resolve that you will not allow any involuntary thoughts to arise in mind. Resolve firmly. No loopholes in the firmness! With inhalation, say OM and with exhalation count the breaths. Slowly and carefully, with total concentration. OM-100 to OM-1. But, as soon as you find that your concentration wavered or you got lost, restart from OM-100. Do the exercise for ten minutes only.
Where did you reach-OM-95, OM-85 or OM-0?
Once again look objectively at the chains of thoughts that your mind was making. Try to go backwards in the chain. Try to remember all the links. All thoughts must have some coherent or incoherent connection with the preceding and the following ones. It cannot be otherwise. Slowly and carefully, find your way up to the first thought of all the chains.
Write down all the first thoughts of all the chains. Look at these thoughts objectively — come out of them as if they belong to somebody else. Do not remain involved in them.
Now, analyze them. Find out the hidden links between all these thoughts. It exists. Your involuntary thinking about your girlfriend is somehow related to your desire to buy a seashore bungalow. Your resolve to do something in the future to go to the market for shopping is in some mysterious way linked to your scuffle with a stranger last night in a restaurant.
In order to enjoy your apples, you will have to learn to live in the present moment and unite the mind with what you are doing in the now. It requires right understanding and practicing this right understanding. It requires changing your priorities from external to internal. It requires loving yourself.
There are certain maladies of the human mind, which create all our first thoughts. They are imaginary and have no reason to be there in the mind. But, strange are the ways of the mind. It holds tightly to everything that creates pain and misery and at the same time, desires to give up all pain and misery!
We will study these maladies in another article.