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Close your eyes and try thinking about nothing: what happens?

Topic #204:

Close your eyes and try thinking about nothing: what happens?

It’s counter-intuitive, but awake or asleep our brains are driven to be doing something. It’s a surprise to most people to realize how little control they have over their own minds, an observation which may explain why the behavior of people on this planet, and our own behavior, is so frustrating.

Meditation is one way to learn to control one’s own mind better, a skill that would seem to be more important than most people consider it. If you can’t control your own mind, you are lost.ย  Or perhaps you disagree?

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  1. Hi
    I disagree.. Praying is the best way to focus your mind and soul into one channel .. Life has many ways to destruct us from our path.. praying is what bring us to be in touch with ourself and soul

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  2. interesting suggestion.. what do I see? with my eyes closed it’s easier to feel things, unnoticed when you’re sharing the world with lots of images… and coincidently, just had a post out about travel, titled: “eyes to the world, doors & windows…” just a coincidence.. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

    thanks for the continuous inspiration…

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  3. Actually, you can retrain your mind to stop the chatter – to refocus the snapses into new patterns. I’ve written a book and several blog posts on it so won’t do another, but it is an interesting concept. See the movie, “What the Bleep…..” for a visual representation.

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  4. I think mental focus is a skill that is absolutely important to being a healthy human; and meditation is a very powerful way to train one’s own mind. In fact, nearly two years ago I completed a 10-day intensive meditation retreat; and wrote a blog about the experience. ๐Ÿ™‚ Here it is if folks are interested: http://meditationmania.wordpress.com/

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      1. Sorry Nancy. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Perhaps if you make the view on your monitor larger that might help? (I can do it by going to View -> Zoom -> Zoom In.) Yes? No?

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  5. As someone with a monkey mind aka attention deficit and hyperactivity, sitting quietly and seeking empty mind never worked for me. Observing my thoughts did. for many, many years I directed a crisis team for families and children in the part of the South Bronx described in Jonathan Kozol’s book Amazing Grace. (http://www.amazon.com/Amazing-Grace-Children-Conscience-Nation/dp/0060976977I) Many suffered from various traumatic experiences and trauma reactions that make sitting quietly difficult. I developed a one minute meditation, that many who returned to say hello said was the most helpful part of their treatment. I started a Wikihow and here it is http://www.wikihow.com/Meditate-in-One-Minute

    yesirememberitwell be grateful you have not experienced either a brain or life events that conspire to make sleep difficult. Or that your brain lets you escape easily, A little more kindness would also benefit you and those around you instead of nasty snide remarks. That from my NannyKat-Nanny-goat.

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  6. Above this comment, you can read my post on the matter – and this was a great opportunity to touch on what bullshit Shambhala Meditation is. So, this is one of my better Daily Post articles. ^_^

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  7. I`m Meditating every night . and for sure my eyes is close , when im sleeping kidding ! ๐Ÿ™‚ the real thing is most people like most people not to accept what you really want to explain .

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  8. Thank you Scott for starting this conversation. Mind quieting is available to all. One must cultivate and commit to this practice, so that one can feel the stillness inside where answers, guidance and peace reside. Getting away from daily stressors via mind quieting is especially necessary in today’s times, and it is always available inside, at no cost and with no substances. Following the breath is one technique for mind quieting.

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  9. It is something I am personally trying to do more, but wow yes it is a skill. It takes time to clear all the clutter and random thoughts swirling around my head! I am trying to switch off the TV, music – anything really that distrubes me – and focus on just ‘being’. Our minds are so full these days, it is perhaps time to find some balance and stop all the inner chatter. I’ve discussed our reluctance to be alone and have some head space, http://the-lady-lounge.com/?s=being+alone ๐Ÿ™‚

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  10. I can stay focused in prayer and most of the time when I am studying my Bible I can stay focused, but to just close my eyes and and let my mind go blank will take a bit of work.

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  11. I find it disturbing that I would often find myself point blank. I used to love meditating, it has revealed many great things about life and myself. It used to be a fountain of ideas some years ago. For some reason, it left me and no matter how hard I try it is keeping its distance from me.

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    1. That is a shame, Joan. But mediation is not a ‘thing’ with motivation. Perhaps the case is that you went away from it – therefore you can always go ‘home’, back to it.

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  12. Beautiful post. Whats important here is to understand how our mind actually works. Close your eyes and just concentrate on what the mind’s producing, as in thoughts ;feelings, reactions, etc. whatever. The first time you do it, you’ll realize that there are 3 levels of consciousness working inside your mind. Follow these august steps and enjoy ;
    a) Close your eyes. Take a couple of deep breaths and make sure you relax yourself.
    b) Now think of a thought, a thought that you desire to be proactive in your mind. (This is the first consciousness level)
    c) Immediately you’ll see how the negative, or the thoughts and reactions against the ideal thought i.e (The first thought, in step 1) start pouring in.
    Note: There will be a conflict b/w these two levels of consciousness here.
    d) Now we must focus on this step. This is the third level of consciousness we”ll play with now. While the other two levels are in conflict with each other, all one has to do is observe them in conflict. Just let the 3rd level observe what’s happening. Now this is what we might call meditation or SADHNA , the real Sanskrit word for meditation.
    Persevere with this n u’ll enjoy the journey.
    Much adulation

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    1. Shri,
      d) is called the witness state; where we observe the play of consciousness and where we see all our leela take place… it is a part of our sadhana. .. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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  13. Oh dear. First it was evil belongs to god and lucifers. Now it is meditation belongs to another religion of another language. Is this how extremist wars starts? Really no fun.

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  14. I guess to each his own. My husband has never had difficulty drawing his mind to a screeching halt at day’s end, while I’m still screening my own reality films even as my head rests on the pillow…beside my empty-headed husband. ๐Ÿ˜‰ …only a joke…he’s got a brilliant mind. Anyway, come see what I have to say about my dilemma… ๐Ÿ™‚
    http://hugmamma.wordpress.com/2011/08/01/daily-post-challenge-204-does-your-mind-go-blank-when-you-close-your-eyes/

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  15. If I close my eyes… well thoughts still keep on going through my mind! No I don’t think that we are lost if we can’t control our mind… hey come on I’m still here! ๐Ÿ˜€

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  16. It’s almost impossible for me to do this. I can’t seem to shut off my mind. That’s why meditation is difficult for me, but instead of getting discouraged, I should keep trying!

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