Don’t be frightened by the high sounding words ‘Philosophy of Mind’ ! Yes, it is an important branch of Philosophy that delves into many complex theories that can be mind boggling.
But you don’t have to worry about those complexities,
unless you are pursuing a degree in Philosophy, in which case these
pages will not be of much help! Such intensive education is not required if your goal is only to find true happiness in life. Towards that goal, I will explain the essence of the Philosophy of Mind in these pages.
The purpose of my creating this web site is to share the concept, and the means, of living happily every day in spite of all your problems in life, and to encourage you to try the “not too difficult” path to attaining enlightenment… Another high-flying word, but it is the simple practice of living in the present, and beginning to realize that YOU are everything.
The two main subjects taught under Philosophy of Mind, are Mind Body Relationship, and Consciousness. The section on “mind and body”, where I directed you in case you were suffering from physical pains, contains one important facet of mind body relationship. Some more variations of this relationship will be covered under the section on Body. The rest of this section deals with consciousness, and some techniques to uncover it.
You already experienced “awareness”, though momentarily, when you did the exercise of “Stop Thinking” under the section on Mind Control! If you need to refresh that skill, click here to go back to Mind Control, paying special attention to the practice described under the sub heading, Watch your mind...Make it a Habit.
Getting that “feeling”, that “present moment awareness”, is the first step in achieving consciousness! Once you have experienced this state, and you are able to maintain it for a few seconds, a few minutes, and a few hours at a time, you are just one step away from enlightenment! This is the core wisdom contained in the teachings of Philosophy of Mind!!
A Powerful Exercise
This is the first exercise that I recommend for you to get a feeling of consciousness. It will give you an eerie feeling at first, but will become profoundly delightful as you try it a second time. You don’t have to make it a regular practice on a daily basis - just a few times in the first week will be enough to get you started.
Stand in front of a mirror, preferably a large one so you can see most of your body. I use the bathroom mirror, which is pretty large size. Often I did this after a shower, so I could see my entire body. You could jump in front of your mirror right now and try out this exercise.
Look into your eyes. As you do it, stop all thoughts. Just keep looking for a few seconds. Then look at the other parts of your body, your face, shoulders, chest, and arms. While you are looking over the different parts of your body, start a new thought, which is really a question you are asking in the present moment, and that is, "what am I seeing in the mirror?".
If you do it right, you will experience a sense of wonder. Keep staring, repeating the mental question in sharp focus, until you get this feeling of wonder. Now try to direct your attention into yourself for a few seconds.
Looking inside you
Looking into yourself will need some effort. The best way in the beginning is to think of the location of your heart. Most people associate the heart with feelings. Direct your attention into a point inside your heart. This is referred to as "going inside you" or "looking inside you".
Ask the question, “who am I”.
While you are “inside you”, close your eyes and go deeper. Keep looking deeper with the question playing faintly in the background. Some thoughts, or images of your body may try to sneak in. Ignore them and go deeper into you.
Keep alternating your attention between your body and your self, and continue asking “who am I?”, “am I this body?”. As you begin to sense some wonder - you may notice your hair standing up (the eerie feeling) - you may find your thoughts straying away…outside of your body…perhaps into nothing, may be just an empty feeling.
Your First Peek into Consciousness!
If you did get that empty feeling, a feeling of being in space, then your experiment was completely successful! You experienced the real you, beyond your body. Now, don’t mistake that empty feeling as the end of your search! As you will see later, that empty feeling is only the start of an endless journey into the universe, that you may undertake at will. Those travels will fill you with boundless joy, for as long as you wish!
Even if you did not get this empty feeling at the first attempt, you definitely experienced consciousness! That is the feeling you got when you were looking at your body and asking all those questions. You had no thoughts (the questions were occurring in the present – they were not thoughts); and you were fully present, absorbed in your body. You attained consciousness.
Philosophy of Mind and the concept of consciousness leading to enlightenment, are beautifully explained by Eckhart Tolle in his pioneering book, The Power of Now. It is intense reading, not meant to be read like a fiction. You read a few pages, then stop and think, and practice what you read. But going through that process is a marvelous journey into enlightenment.
To grasp the essential wisdom of Eckhart Tolle click here
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