Most people would be glad to have some peace of mind in their life. They would be happy to forget their troubles, problems and worries, and enjoy a few moments of inner calmness and freedom from obsessing thoughts. What is peace of mind? It is a state of inner calmness and tranquility, together with a sense of freedom, when thoughts and worries cease, and there is no stress, strain or fear. Such moments are not so rare.
In a world where stress, strain, rush and restlessness abound, peace of mind is of paramount importance. It is a treasure that everyone desires, but only very few know how to gain it, and even fewer really do something to get it.
With all the advancement of Science, no remedy has yet been found for lack of inner peace. Often, even when being in good financial condition and in good health, people have no peace of mind, which only proves that peace of mind does not depend on external conditions or on any scientific or technical progress.
Peace of mind is not something to be found only on the Himalayas, by monks and hermits. It is attainable here and now, wherever you are, irrespective of your external circumstances, since it is an inner state, and is independent of circumstances and external conditions. Peace manifests, when the incessant inner chatter of the mind slows down. When it appears, anxiety, stress, worries, fear, mental and emotional restlessness, nervousness and impatience disappear.
Peace of mind is an acquired skill, which requires time, practice and perseverance to develop, just like any other skill. With the right training, and with desire, motivation, patience and perseverance, you are sure to attain at least some degree of inner peace. Peace is the true nature, not agitation. That is why when agitation is there; we want to go back to a state of peace. We ourselves are creating the causes of agitation, which are desires, carvings, I-ness, my-ness, lack of faith and non-performance of duties.
Once a desire arises, we cannot forget it. There is complete insistence that things must happen the way we want. As long as we have such desires, it is impossible to gain peace. We cannot even sleep properly because our mind is so riddled with desires, let alone poised enough to gain that great and permanent peace. Another characteristic of desire is that once we have enjoyed something, we crave for it again and again.
If your mind is like a house with wide open windows and doors, with nothing to sort or filter out what comes in, all thoughts are free to enter, dwell there and disturb and affect your mind and life. In this situation, there is lack of control over your mental house and over what goes inside it. Under these conditions, the mind allows free access to thoughts, ideas, words and suggestions coming from the outside, from people, the media or from other sources.
Someone, who has the key to the doors and windows of his mind, can prevent unnecessary thoughts and worries from occupying his mind. Such a person can choose to think or stop thinking at will. Such a person can enjoy inner peace and be in a state free from worries and anxieties. Being able to close the windows and doors of the mind might seem an unobtainable goal, but with desire, persistence and the right training, this can become a possibility.
True control of mind is not just the ability to concentrate on one thought and disregard other thoughts. It is the ability to cleanse the mind completely and make it silent. Sri Ramana Maharshi, the great Indian Sage, has said: “Mind is only a bundle of thoughts, stop thinking and show me the mind”. When one becomes really free from incessant thinking, he or she becomes free from slavery to the mind, as both thoughts and mind is one and the same thing.
Thoughts arise in us and we think them. We may choose to ignore them and experience real inner freedom, or we may choose to water them with the power of our attention and make them grow. When you have to think, choose only positive, happy and uplifting thoughts. Think about and imagine only what you really and truly and desire and that will come to pass. Always remember that life is shaped according to our thoughts.
Thus, when the mind is silent, there is happiness inside and outside. It is a great asset and advantage to be able to silence the mind when its services are not needed. The attainment of serenity of mind, which is actually freedom from the compulsion of incessant thinking, is open for everyone, provided the proper training is undertaken. When you understand its value and have a true desire to succeed, nothing can stand in your way.