Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Walk the Path & Live in the Moment

Yesterday, I was watching cricket match between India and West Indies. As many Indians know, due to a row between Nimbus sports and DD, the match was telecast on DD 7 minutes delayed. Since Nimbus was not made available to us via our cable operators, we were watching it on DD even though we were watching 7 minutes into the past.

At the same time, we also had a sense of peeking into the future since all news channels were updating the score ball-by-ball without any delay. We were watching the scores on the news channels and then switching to the game on DD. It was some kind of a thrill to know that in the next over the batsmen will get out or that the batsmen will hit a six on the next ball.

I continued with that shuffling for almost 2 hours enjoying the strange excitement which resembled a feeling of ‘knowing the future’. But when the match entered a tensed phase, into crucial deciding last overs, where it was neck-to-neck fight between the teams, I could not go to the news channel to see what actually happened. I was tensed and anxious as to what will happen; but I did not feel like switching to the news channel to ‘know the future,’ so to say. I continued all through the final overs on DD till India won the game.

After the match, I was struck with an insight about the series of feelings I experienced during the whole match. Initially I was excited and thrilled to know the future but then when the match reached tensed situations, I preferred to stay with that tension rather than relieve myself by peeking into the other channel.

Perhaps, this is what happens to us in life. The more intellectual we become the more access we get to the happenings of future. At least, we will start estimating the most probable events and somehow start seeing the future. In the beginning such knowledge might be exhilarating, but soon you would lose interest in the match that’s in front of you if you know what’s about to happen.

Many philosophers have advocated that mind is your enemy. When I first heard such sayings, I felt that they are some kind of losers and hate people who are gifted with intelligence to know and understand the future. However, luckily, I understood the ill effects of being intelligent soon: You cannot anymore live in the moment!

Mind demands security and security comes with certainty. Certainty comes with logic and logic peeks into future. In the end, mind feels Secure and your heart will feel lost.

So the moral of the story and the insight I had is: Mind is a good servant but a very bad master. Use your intelligence to achieve your dreams; don’t let your dreams be determined by your intelligence.

If you let that happen, all your dreams will become nothing but logical analysis of what you possibly can do or cannot do. This evaluation of possibilities is limited and restricted by your acquired learning, which we call mind. Mind is just as old as your age is, whereas your dreams and intuition are much older; perhaps, they have been there since the origin of the universe in one form or the other.

The balancing act has to be learnt! Mind should enter the picture only after you know and realize what your Dreams are. Then, after you know, take the help of your mind to follow the Path. Mind has to just make things easy and comfortable for you to walk your Path. It should not be deciding what your Path is.

When Mind is trying to decide your Path, it sees the opportunities, probabilities, abilities, capabilities, and many such parameters. The result is that you start to live in the future.

When mind is trying to analyze or judge about your Path, it draws incidents, experiences, lessons, pains and pleasures from your memories. In such a case, you live in the past.

But if you let your heart decide the Path, then, Mind has only on task; and that is to make sure that your journey is joyous and purposeful. Hurray! Here, you are living in the moment.

This whole insight might seem silly initially, but once you learn how to talk to and listen to your Intuition, you will wonder how good its wisdom is when compared to the knowledge of your mind. Trust me, walk this walk and you will relish every moment of it and also cherish it when you reach the destination.


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