Freedom from the Tyrannical Thinking Mind (The End of “Me & My Story”)
by Jagjot Singh
It is why most of our relationships are a mess. We expect people to be a certain way, and we base our happiness on that. Trying to change someone of their nature is an act of violence. The problem is that all discomforts and irritations are within us, but the ego loves to pin the blame on others. So why does the ego do that? It does that because it identifies with the sense of separation – me versus others. The mind creates a strong veil that makes us believe we exist as separate identities.
This personal identification or “me” keeps repeating the same stories. The ego’s job is to keep reinforcing this fictitious image. The ego’s nature is to expand and enhance itself by any means possible.
So what to do? What do you do when you’ve finished your water supply and see a mirage in the desert? You simply see the situation for what it is. No matter how parched you are, the mirage will not produce water.
Once you know the truth, your pain of thirst will never turn into suffering. You’ll know that your feeling in the moment has nothing to do with the reality of the situation.
When we see our thoughts, feelings, and emotions for what they are rather than how they should be, it is the dawn of witnessing. One witnesses things without creating judgments or reactions. So when a painful thought arises in conscious awareness, the thought is seen without distortion, i.e., without filtering it through the lens of past conditioning. A space gets created between the observer and the observed that cuts off the involvement by not allowing the thought to propagate into further thinking. So the ego does not get the opportunity to cling and get carried away by the thinking mind. As this understanding deepens, the ego gives up control, surrendering to “what is.”
Suffering is a consequence of the ego getting involved in the content of consciousness. Your true nature is not either the ego or the mind. You are the pure consciousness or awareness space in which everything appears. Your consciousness creates both the external and the internal world.
So my final concept is that though we appear to be separate in duality, it is the same consciousness that runs through all. The separation is an illusion created by the mind. Conflicts happen when we identify ourselves as the thinking, which in simple terms is attachment to “me and my story.” Conflicts occur when my thinking contradicts yours. Since I am attached to my thoughts in the form of concepts, ideologies, and beliefs, anything that challenges them directly attacks the “me.” But when the realization of oneness happens, dissolving the “me and my story,” there’s complete acceptance of what is.
It is true freedom from suffering as the “me” to suffer has disappeared. It is a choiceless awareness that is our natural state. Nothing can stop the pain, but with this new understanding, the pain does not translate into suffering.