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Thursday, March 7, 2019

What is meant by Letting go of the Mind




Soon after I wrote the piece last week, more ideas on this topic flooded my mind. Let me share them with you before I forget.

The word Kavi has come to mean a poet in common usage. But it has several other meanings including wise, intelligent, prophet, thinker, seer and enlightened. It is in the latter sense our ancient rishis who wrote the mantras of the Vedas are denoted by the word kavi. In addition, they expressed their visions in a poetic form with words full of imagery and hidden meanings.

It is with awe I was thinking about the words of our rishis such as “How can you know that by which you know?”, “Let go of that by which you are trying to let go” and “Cut off the mind with the mind.” What do they mean? How can I be a human without the mind? The essence of being a human will be gone? How can I reflect on such noble and mysterious things without the mind? What were they saying?

Here is what these statements mean to me at my current level of understanding.

 1. Desires are of the mind. Let go of unreasonable and unending desires. This will help get over frustration, anxiety and attachment.

2. Let go of unreasonable and imaginary fears. This will get rid of fear of death since it is an unreasonable one. Imaginary fears are what Buddha refers to as the “second arrow.”

3. Let go of dogmas and bias.

By letting go of these aspects of the mind, we are letting go of the hindrances of the mind. That is as good as letting go of the mind.

Finally, if possible, imagine a subject to which my mind itself becomes an object.  This was probably   what was meant when the rishi said in Kena Upanishad “He who does not think but by whose power mind thinks is Brahman.”

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