Monday, October 6, 2014

The Meditator Decides Whose in Charge

When Caesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer on television, encounters pet problems in the homes of dog owners who invite his counsel, more often than not the central issue is not the misbehaving animal but the failure of the owners to assume intelligent control over the pet. The owners are so sincere in their fondness for the animal that they cannot understand why the dog won’t behave properly. The point here is not any deficiency in their fondness but their failure to grasp and respect the nature of the relationship.  Love alone won’t make it better.
Caesar notes that unless the owner asserts an intelligent practical dominance, which the pet expects, then the animal fills in the negligence by predictably running the show.
Likewise, unless the meditator consistently assumes command over his imagination and thought processes, then those powers, like the owners’ pet,  will arbitrarily run his life as well as his practice. Sincere expectations  ain’t enough.
We need assertively to remind ourselves exactly what we want our minds to do. Either seriously dialogue with the mind and resolve the issue or tell it you will deal with the issue later.  As Swami Rama remarked: if all fails, one needs to rally the mind to assert no to its internal distractions that plague our practice. Literally, one can deflect the continuation of distracting images by shouting “no” interiorly. Then make the act of witnessing not a casual selection but a firm choice.
Unsolicited images and entertaining ideas will remain the bane of meditation unless we exert our will to call the shots.