Is it possible to focus on positive thoughts, and train the mind to think rationally? In short, yes – It is possible. However, training the mind is more difficult than training the body. If we are overcome by irrational fear, or extreme misery, it is even more difficult to focus on reality and positive thoughts.
Training the mind is a daily ritual for mental maintenance and cultivation of positive energy. One method for training the mind is to focus on ideas that bring us to calmer states of mind. Each of us has something that gives us inner strength. Some Karma Yoga practitioners cultivate a greater sense of calm, by doing for others.
We all have friends, family, or a pet. If we help someone in need, this creates a state of inner calm, where we feel needed, and our problems appear to be smaller. Focusing on others is the polar opposite of focusing on our internal negative thoughts. When we focus on thoughts that overwhelm us with fear, we see our problems as larger than life itself.
If you are going to open the door to your mind, you can choose the direction to travel. For many people, it is easy to see themselves as helpless, to participate in worthless habits, and to see others in a negative light. The frame of mind we have is a choice.
It is true that none of us is perfect. At the same time, Yoga is a system which helps all of us train our minds through meditation, and use these practical applications in daily life. Yogic science is constantly evolving in many directions. Yoga continues to change with each century, but training the mind has always been an advanced Yogic practice.
Within the Yoga Sutras, Patanjali describes Eight Limbs. These are eight methods for improving life. Four of the eight are directly related to meditation. A novice does not attain Samadhi during the first practice. The novice does not know what Samadhi is, and an advanced practitioner may not be able to attain it.
To practice meditation with the purpose of purging irrational fear or extreme misery, will require some guidance from a competent guru or counselor. This allows one to feel the foundation of this mental exercise we call “meditation.” Once meditation is mastered, it should be practiced daily. The ultimate reward of meditation is when the mind becomes one’s best ally.
Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, is a co-owner and the Director of Yoga Teacher Training at: Aura Wellness Center in, Attleboro, MA. To receive Free Yoga videos, Podcasts, e-Books, reports, and articles about Yoga, please visit: http://www.yoga-teacher-training.org/