So I was sitting in the Treehouse under a beautiful crescent moon with the sounds of the forest resounding into every cell of my body when I could not help but take note of the clarity, the stillness, and the peace I felt. No-one is around, no television, no internet, no cell-phone reception; this is the place I call home. Just 20mins out of the city, but it may as well be a portal to Pandora, or so it feels sometimes.
One of the most common questions I get about living in a tree-house on a somewhat secluded mountainside is, “Don’t you get lonely?” My surprising reply can often resemble, “Of coarse I do, there is only so much yoga, meditation, and reading I can do.” You see, I am not a hermit, I love people, I love to socialize, and I love being in and among the action. With that said, silence and even loneliness have been some of my greatest teachers. There is so much power and growth in having the opportunity to sit quietly, listen to our thoughts, and understand our emotions. I truly believe that a huge part of the ‘disconnect’ in our world comes from the disconnect within ourselves.
At this point I could take this article in many directions, but what I want to draw reference too is what we may loosely refer to as our Mind, and more importantly, our relationship to it. Your Mind has the power to alter your perception of any situation or experience simply by choosing to do so. Un-deniably it is the most powerful creation in the universe and governs every thought, every belief, every emotion, every action, and more importantly every re-action. The thing is that the Mind can be a tool, or it can be a weapon. This depends on your relationship to it. Does your Mind run around in your head creating emotions and stories for mere entertainment? Do you feel like it never shuts up? Like any relationship the one with your mind can be a toxic aggressive power struggle, or it can be compassionate, loving, and nurturing.
It would be helpful if the Mind came with a ‘how to use’ manual
– It actually does, we just are not taking the time to read it.
Your mind is very much alive, and it needs love and attention like any other relationship you have. If we don’t take the time cultivate a wholesome, loving relationship with our Mind, it reacts like a neglected child and creates all these situations filled with stress, drama, anxiety, and fear to get our attention. These emotions then result in illness, depression, insomnia, survival syndrome, and an all-round mundane, surface existence. It is as if our Minds are the CPU’s of our lives and without regular maintenance it gets infected with all these viruses that have disconnected us from ourselves, each other, and all things magical and divine.
Imagine that a large part of our society cannot even fathom the thought of being alone for 20 minutes; – please note that time alone means no cell phone, no computer, no music, no TV, no book, no external stimulation, no doing; just you and your mind spending quality time together, sitting. For most of society this either sounds like torture, or near impossible. It has nothing to do with personality, energetic levels or any of those excuses we like to come up with. It’s really simple. If you would like ‘peace of mind’ then we need to create a genuine relationship with our mind and try to understand where our emotions come from. Why are we creating all these ‘stories’ filled with fear, anxiety, and worry?
We speak of finding ‘Peace of Mind’ but we know little of it, we are more frequently heading toward ‘loosing our minds.’
I wish this was a joke but unfortunately it is not. We have created a society where the majority of individuals cannot stand to be still with their own thoughts and emotions. A world where we are so terrified of ourselves that we are constantly doing any and every thing to avoid having to ‘Be alone.’ How can we expect to have quality loving relationships with each other if we cannot even create these loving and accepting relationships with ourselves?
I could probably go on writing and risk the chance of this article getting somewhat monotonous but there is really no need. If we want a world where we all live in peace and love then we, as the individuals in that world have to be at peace with ourselves. In order for us to cultivate loving, accepting, compassionate relationships among our communities we have to spend the time to cultivate that with ourselves. That may even mean seeing the aspects of our lives, our past, and our actions that are not so pleasing, the aspects of ourselves we would rather avoid. How else do we expect to change them? The mind is the foundation of every thought and emotion you will ever experience. It has the power to shift reality and change the world, beginning with your world.
If you do find the courage and make the time as Rumi said, “to take that long journey into yourself,’ be sure to do so without judgment. A loving relationship with yourself and your mind is one in which we observe, seek to understand and then compassionately adjust our thoughts and actions; self-judgment, resentment, and avoidance will in no way bring the peace we are longing for.
Acknowledging the power of a holistic relationship to your mind, and
making the time to spend some time nurturing that relationship is the first step
in creating an inspired, peaceful, and ‘stress-free’ state of living.