"Thoughts are just moving through consciousness. They have no power. Nothing has reality until you reach it, grab it and somehow impregnate it with the power of belief." ~Adyashanti
"Meditation is when the mind is free and not holding thoughts. Let the thoughts come and go, but do not run after them." ~Papaji
It's easy to label thought as the great culprit that steals away the moment. But if we look closely, it's not actually thought that does this, but rather the attention, importance and belief that we lavish on our thoughts.
Thoughts come and go in the mind, just as waves come and go in the ocean. Both very normal, natural occurrences. The ocean, however, doesn't show interest or involvement in any particular wave -- whereas mind does hone in on specific thoughts, mulling them over and clamping down on them.
The word "thought" is commonly understood even by small children. But thoughts -- which qualify as forms -- are "invisible," which makes them often difficult to isolate and recognize as such. Especially while they are occurring, when it's easy to get swept up into the content of what's being thought and overlook the fact that it's only a passing thought, as insignificant as a passing wave in the ocean.
Some thoughts (or types of thought patterns) are so habituated that it takes a real sincerity, self-discipline and diligence to spot and recognize them for what they are. Each time we do this, though, we free the thought to pass on, simultaneously freeing ourselves to be alive to the present moment.
When we get involved in a thought, it passes much more slowly. That's because our very attention and interest in it serve as an invitation for it to stick around.
The more attention we give it, the more "food for thought." By feeding our thoughts, we are, in essence, cutting ourselves off from the aliveness and fullness of the moment, choosing instead to live at the periphery.
The answer is not to stop thinking. That would not only be impossible, but also completely unnecessary.
To "pull the plug" on thought doesn't mean to keep thought from happening. It only means to be aware when you are thinking and remove your focus, attention and investment in the content of the thought, simply allowing it to pass on.
This is to pull the plug on thought and free yourself to be.
It is your thoughts that create
and your hells.
Free yourself by no longer
giving priority to your
thoughts and thought patterns.
Unravel these thought patterns by
really seeing them.
Thoughts of desire.
Thoughts of complaint.
Thoughts that this moment may
be wrong in some way.
Thoughts of needing anything other
than this moment to be happy.
Poem from Notes to Self: Meditations on Being
Just a gal experimenting with what it means to live outside of mind.
Read more about Notes to Self, the "manual" on living beyond mind.