The Restless Mind


I cannot visualize a picture for long some thing else comes into my mind. I cannot suppress a thought for long another thought comes and takes its place. When sitting on the ground crossed legs my legs becomes numb like blood has stop flowing I could continue for long but.I had stop.

—Debasish sarkar, india


Dear Debasish,

It is common for the restless mind, that we all seem to have, to be constantly moving to other thoughts. It is difficult to concentrate on one thing alone. You totally concentrate when you are extremely interested in a product you are doing or a book you are reading. Then you are focused. This is how we should be in meditation. But it is difficult to focus on an abstract unless your desire and devotion itself is so strong that it becomes that which you are seeking.

To start with you need to sit in a chair not cross-legged so that your concentration is not on your numb legs. Sitting in lotus posture is the best but not if your body becomes numb. You must be relaxed and comfortable to rid your mind of the bodily needs. This is true also with the mind. You need to relax and calm the mind so that it is not thinking of the daily activities that try to intrude. Tell the ego to go to sleep as this is the time for the soul to speak with the Divine.

When you are starting to be distracted, bring your mind back to that which you want to concentrate on. Keep doing this with joy. In time you will go deep. You may want to start your meditations with chanting. Paramhansa Yogananda said that chanting is half the battle. Chanting helps to relax you and focuses your mind on what you are doing. Chant out loud, then softer and finally silently in your mind. Then do your meditation practices.

The Divine just wants our love. He will help those who keep trying and keep Him in their thoughts. Think of Him during your daily activities and give everyone you meet His love. Give Him your problems. He likes to hear from you about anything and everything. Just start talking to Him. And keep up with your meditations every day.

Joy and blessings, Seva