Since the understanding of this pointer is essential to the whole process of living without resistance, it’s important to have a clear insight of it so that there are no misinterpretations in the mind. Below I’ve listed out a few common misunderstandings in the mind about this pointer, with some insights on a clearer understanding on that aspect.
When you don’t think, the mind continues thinking
The work “think” is basically a verb and it implies that there is a “subject” who can think or not think as a conscious choice. But in truth, thinking is not really in our conscious control – rather it happens automatically in the mind. If thinking was in your conscious control you would be able to switch off the mind any time you wanted and switched it on when you wanted, plus you would also be able to ensure that the mind never thinks a negative thought – anyone who is aware of the mind’s working would know that such a conscious control is just not possible.
Controlling the mind is only a “temporary” effort of focus, just like controlling the breath – it does not last long, and mind goes back to its automatically thinking mode. However, in the periods where we try to control the mind with effort, and force it into doing something it’s not motivated to do at that moment, we create tremendous resistance within our being – felt as “stress” or tension in the body.
This pointer helps you see through the futility of trying to control the mind. When you allow your mind the freedom to move on its own accord, it will re-align with the natural movement of your life stream (which is in sync with the totality). It may feel a little chaotic, within, when you first allow the mind full freedom to run without your interruption, but soon the internal chaos start coming to a rest and a harmony comes in. Don’t panic in the initial days when you are getting aligned with the process of letting go of the mind – rest assured that the mind will come into a harmony on its own accord.
The reason it feels chaotic initially is because of release of momentum in it, the way a spring releases when you let go of holding on to it – for so long you’ve been in the habit of suppressing the mind and so when you let go of it, initially it feels like a “chaotic release” – most people get scared of this “momentum” in the mind and try frantically to get the mind back in “leash”. Hopefully, now that you have an understanding of this process you would not panic about it and keep staying in a place of letting go.
Who is the thinker?
An important question you need to ask yourself is, who is this “subject” that’s trying to control the thoughts or who is making an effort to think. In spiritual teachings, this thinker is called the “little me” or the “me entity”, or the “self” (with small s). I sometimes refer to this part in our consciousness, that wants to control the mind, as the “negative ego”.
Basically, if you notice, the part in you that wants to control the mind, is basically a fear-based entity; it’s afraid of the mind’s freedom and feels the need to stay in control instead of trusting the flow of life. This “little me” is rooted in fear, insecurity, doubt, lack and uncertainity, and thus is not trusting of allowing the natural movement of life to take over in the body.
Actually the very pointer of “let go of the mind” is directed to this “little me” part in you. You can easily identify its working in your space. Can you sense an entity in your consciousness which is sitting in fear, worried about what the mind is thinking, worried about what it thinks it needs to be doing, projecting a fearful future, resenting the past, trying to force the mind to effort, trying to control itself and trying to control others, and never trusting the well-being of life. This entity is the “negative ego” or the “little me”. Most of the questions of doubt come from this entity in you.
This “little me” entity is the reason for all the resistance in your being. Its very structure is made from fear-based conditioning, you can call it the fear-based creation of your mind. In essence it’s only a thought structure, and has no reality, but this thought has become really strong owing to years of belief in it. In fact, most of us think that who we are is this thought based “entity”. We identify with this “negative ego” thinking that it’s who we are – that’s one reason why we can’t feel the wholeness of our being.
As long as this “little me” is in the center stage, it keeps your vibration rooted in fear/hatred/lack, it also stands in constant resistance to allowing the natural expression of your mind to unfold because of its beliefs in limited external conditioning. This “little me” is a thought structure, but it can spawn thoughts from itself – thoughts creating thoughts. So the pointer to “Not think” is for this “little me” structure in your human consciousness (or in your mind).
Of course, the “little me” has not interest in letting go because when it does let go it would start dissolving in power – it wants to remain in the center stage. So it requires a deep awareness, understanding and conscious dis-identification to keep letting go of this “little me” part in your human consciousness. As this structure dissolves in you, there will be no resistance, or very little resistance, in your being – allowing the free movement of your mind and allowing the influx of the intelligence of your being.
All struggle comes from the “little me”
Your being is effortless in its movement. As you can notice – the processes of digestion, blood circulation, breathing, heart beat, hair growth, happens effortlessly without you even realizing that it’s happening. This is the nature of the natural movement of life, that it’s always effortless. The same way thinking is also effortless and intelligent, when the little me does not try to control the mind. When the mind is without the resistance of the little me, learning happens effortlessly and you align with the work that tuned to your aptitude producing quality output, attracting well-being, with no unnecessary or wasted actions.
The negative ego is what takes in the fear based external conditioning from outside and tries to force the mind to move in a way that’s not natural to it. This is one reason why people get stuck in jobs that don’t feel aligned with their aptitude or take up courses that they are not really interested in, or even end up in relationships that don’t feel congruent with their nature. If you’ve never identified the presence, or operation, of this negative ego entity in you – it can be quite a shock to realize how much resistance comes from it, and how badly it’s rooted in insecurity, fear, doubt and hatred. It will put forth several clever arguments to keep you from letting go of it, most of them rooted in fear, and its take a deep awareness to see through its movement.
The pointer to “not think” is not a directive for the mind but a directive for the “little me” to let go of its efforts at thinking and allow the mind to think in its natural flow. When the little me stops controlling the mind, there is a merging of the intelligence of mind with the intelligence of your being or wholeness, allowing for a harmonious functioning.
All spiritual teachings of enlightenment ultimately point towards letting go of this “little me” entity in your human consciousness – this is what the Buddha meant by “no self, no suffering”, this what Ramana Maharishi meant by saying “let go the self” or what the upanishads stated as – “the self is an illusion” what Jesus referred to when he said “it’s easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God” (by “rich man” he was referring to the negative ego or the little me entity that is trying to sit in control, by “kingdom of God” he was referring to the wholeness/intelligence of your being). In fact when you understand this pointer, you can read any spiritual teaching and see that this is the essence of all the teachings.