Monthly Archives: May 2011

Religion vs Spirituality

Religion is a path to God. Spirituality is also a path to God. However they have differences in approach.

“The essence of religion:
Fear God and obey God.
The quintessence of spirituality:
Love God and become another God.”

- Sri Chinmoy

Slow down the turbulant mind

Mental tensions, frustrations, insecurity, aimlessness are among the most damaging stressors, and psychosomatic studies have shown how often they cause migraine headache, peptic ulcers, heart attacks, hypertension, mental disease, suicide, or just hopeless unhappiness.

– Hans Selye

A rushing mind jumps to conclusions, causing stress. It is often going too fast to see events and people as they truly are. Such a mind is constantly on the move – desiring, worrying, hoping, fearing, planning, defending, rehearsing, criticizing. It cannot stop or rest except in deep sleep.

By slowing down the mind – the first purpose of meditation – much of this tension can be removed. Then we are free to respond to life’s difficulties not as sources of stress but as challenges, which will draw out of us deeper resources than we ever suspected we had. A one-pointed mind is slow and sound, which gives it immense resilience under stress. With a mind like this, we always have a choice in how we respond to life around us.

Self-Conquest

Learn self-conquest, persevere thus for a time, and you will perceive very clearly the advantage which you gain from it. As soon as you apply yourself to contemplation, you will at once feel your senses gather themselves together: they seem like bees which return to the hive and there shut themselves up to work at the making of honey.

– Saint Teresa of Avila

Complete concentration is complete relaxation. The ability to work on a job with total concentration, and then put it out of your mind when necessary, is a skill which can be cultivated. Through practice, we can learn to drop whatever we are doing and turn our attention to a more urgent need. When you are absorbed in a favorite book and your partner interrupts you, set the book aside and give your complete attention to what he or she is saying. If part of your mind is on the conversation and part on what you have been reading, there will be division and tension in the mind.

When we practice this one-pointedness during the day, it will greatly help our meditation. The mind will much more quickly become recollected.

— Eknath Easwaran