CONTROLLING THE MIND
September 20, 2002
Friday Meeting

Swaminarayan Bhagwan has said that once external forces are controlled, the mind will gradually come under control as well. Thus, the more we purify the outside, the more the senses will be in control, and our mind will also follow [ref. Vachanamrut Gadhada First 18, Gadhada Middle 2, etc.].

In Vachanamrut Gadhada First 38, Swaminarayan Bhagwan explains that the mind should constantly be engaged in thoughts relating to God and references the example of the ghost.

In Vachanamrut Gadhada Middle 33 as well, Swaminarayan Bhagwan explains, "The mind should be continuously kept engaged in the nine types of devotion...it should not be left unoccupied for even a moment. For example, if a man conquers a ghost but does not assign it some work to do, the ghost would turn on him. Similarly, the mind is like a ghost; when it is not engaged in God's devotion, it begins to have evil thoughts...Thus, the mind should continuously be kept occupied in spiritual discourses, devotional songs, etc. that are related to God. This can be known as having conquered the mind."

In Vachanamrut Kariyani 3, Swaminarayan Bhagwan explains, "Faults of the mind should be eradicated by contemplating, 'I am the soul, separate from desires; in fact, I am completely blissful.'"

In Vachanamrut Panchala 3, Swaminarayan Bhagwan explains, "The indriyas (senses) and the antahkaran (subtle faculties including the mind) should be kept in a witness box and in chains in the form of the niyams (guidelines) of the five religious vows, and then they should be made to offer bhakti (devotion) to God. They should not be given any gratitude, but should be looked upon only as enemies."

As an alternate method*, in Vachanamrut Gadhada Last 6, Swaminarayan Bhagwan has explained the friendship of the mind and jiva (soul) with the example of milk and water: "When milk and water are mixed and heated on a fire, water settles below the milk and itself burns, but it does not allow the milk to burn. Conversely, to save the water, the milk overflows and extinguishes the fire." Swaminarayan Bhagwan then explains, "Because the mind is a friend of the soul, it will never have a thought which the soul does not like. So, when the mind has improper thoughts, if the soul becomes extremely upset with the mind, then such thoughts will never again arise."

In Vachanamrut Gadhada Last 11, Swaminarayan Bhagwan explains, "The indriyas (senses) are overcome by the four means of vairaagya (detachment), svadharma (religious discipline prescribed in scriptures), tapa (austerities), and niyams (God's guidelines). The mind is overcome by the nine types of bhakti along with the knowledge of God's greatness."


*Bhagavad Gita 6/5-6/6 states, "A man must elevate himself by his own mind, not degrade himself. The mind is the friend of the soul, and his enemy as well. For him who has conquered the mind, the mind is the best of friends; but for one who has failed to do so, his very mind will be the greatest enemy."

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