How often have you heard about the concept of focusing your mind on a single thing in order for you to be able to tame it? Great philosophers and ascetics have long advocated the need for us to be able to enslave our senses with the help of our mind.
‘Control your thoughts and control your destiny’ is the common perception when it comes to achieving the highest possible goals that your potential may warrant. Somehow, everybody seems to think that the mind is like a wild horse. That’s the most common analogy used for it somehow. That to be able to utilize all of your mind’s power you should be able to tame it, to enslave it, capture it somehow and get what you want done, done by it!

That’s interesting considering that a vast number of cultures and scores of philosophers, thinkers and ascended masters have seemingly advised us on this particular method of empowering our mind, there really must be some merit to it. Or is there?

Maybe the ones that thought this way were the ones whose voices were allowed to reach us and the others’ were just unjustly doused by insecure persons of authority( religion, government, fundamentalists, dictators).

You know, maybe the real purpose of your mind is in it being set free rather than crippled by these methods of control and binding. I mean, what would you do if you had a Porsche in your possession? Race it on track full throttle or somehow try to dumb down its engine into performing routine, mundane tasks? The answer is obvious. The beauty of a sports car is in the raw power concealed in that motor and those cylinders. To honor a sports car you would need to drive it like it was designed to be driven. You would unleash its true power and push its limits!

I think that, this mindfulness school of thought needs a major revamp.
Your mind isn’t an alien entity whose control you must seize or claim! It’s who YOU are! Period. See, you are your thoughts. The work you have to do is in reconciling who you think you are with who you really are to the best possible degree. People just want to avoid all that work and bypass it to a different zone entirely. What a shame considering we only use less than 10% of our mental faculties. I mean even geniuses don’t use more than that. Within that muscle which is about 1/40th your body mass, all the conscious and unconscious knowledge, all of the names, faces, books, data and metadata recorded and synthesized over your lifetime forms about a further 1/10th. There’s definitely something wrong here. I’m not a neurologist but look nothing in our body is without reason.

Our body constitutes of parts that are either actively in use or have evolved to have predominant role or had a predominant role in the past and have been pushed to a residual role. For example the wisdom teeth and nictitating membrane. They are just residual evolutionary traits from the past. So if we look at the brain then, we’re probably easing into a greater utilization of said muscle millions of years down the line or unless Neanderthals were math and astronomy geniuses and learnt to mask it well, we’re missing something.

Think about it this way….As long as you treat something or someone as different from your self, as a threat to your well being, you really won’t be able to trust your life with it, will you? You really will never be able to bring yourself to completely trust it. Face it for a fact. It’s not the Porsche that’s at fault it’s the driver who is inept that’s the problem.

This is exactly why only a handful of people have ever been able to completely rely on their mind, their thoughts, their impulses, their instincts to earn their place in the world and been able to live in peace at that.
Society, or at least the Socio-political framework if you may call it, has a tendency of side lining and out casting such people. It’s because when you follow your natural instincts, your original way of doing and comprehending things, people are scared of you. You don’t fit into their neat little boxes and it scares them that they cannot ‘sort’ you into a specific category.
But these people, who unleash the true power of their mind and sought to be directed rather than controlled by their natural impulses and original ideas, if their work falls and even remotely within the acceptably mundane framework of our society, they are worshipped as creative geniuses. That’s the biggest paradox there is. A lot of this thought is captured in Neitzsche’s The Higher Man and the Herd where he cites the importance of eccentricity and distance form the ‘herd’ in being able to bring forth a valuable input to society. These people are our visionaries, our ‘arrogant’ leaders, inventors, thought leaders.

But, cross that fine line and step over into the realm of the extraordinarily extraordinaire and you may well be poisoned like Copernicus, ostracized like Fidel Castro or banished like Salman Rushdie. See there is this unseen glass ceiling that your society imposes on you in an unsaid way and it doesn’t matter how great a genius is or how novel his ideas, to be accepted you must conform to an unsaid degree beyond which you just cause cognitive dissonance in the masses. People fear what they cannot understand and if your ideas are too complex or the motives behind those ideas too complex, you are the enemy.

What is that unique entity now, that seems to connect all these social misfits? For a better perspective, let me add a few more to the list : Michael Jackson, Van Gogh, Beethoven, Einstein, Jim Morrison, Julius Caesar, Malcolm X, William Powell, Steve Jobs, Snowden, and even his holiness the Dalai Lama.

All of them have one thing in common… Free Thought! Some have been labelled tyrants, others deranged and pretty much every thing controversial that could have involved them has happened. Mostly in the form of a knee jerk reaction from the people in power as a way of reeling in the degree of empowerment that their supporters seem to feel in just supporting their heroes!

But why is it that these people have enjoyed huge support from a vast section of the society, that that they have been worshiped by them. Also, why is it that, that phase has mostly led to the phase of their undoing by authority? Are we doomed to fail as soon as we’ve reached our personal apex or is that just the final test before breaking through to a higher level?

See this is a process. “First they ignore you, then they fight you and then you win.” That’s a quote by Mahatma Gandhi by the way and this quote applies pretty much to every charismatic thought leader in the world. First the masses ignore your ideas, then they resist your ideas and they finally are just left in awe and the idea propels itself.

For any idea, the authority are the masses. If an idea doesn’t have mass acceptance it is merely a theory. An idea that has mass acceptance stands proved by default like the proverbial proof being in the pudding. At every stage you are tested with a higher intensity than last time. The trick to survive the pushback at each stage if you are to continue to be true to yourself your ideas and free thought, is to not to be attached. If you are ready to let go of everything that comes with mass fame, mass recognition and mass acceptance, you are ready to keep on growing.

We are all slaves to the limits that we have set for ourselves.
No one wants to tell you that.
No one will tell you that.
And those who do tell you that are the only ones who know it themselves. A thought leaders doesn’t become a leader by choice, he is a leader by default. The question that always begs answering is whether the society he lives in is ready to let go of old ways of doing things.

And that’s what makes thought leaders so powerful!


©Jay Kaushal

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One thought on “Empower your mind….set it free!

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