Yoga training: Modification of the mind-stuff
I'm reading The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali as part of the teacher training. Here's one sutra (saying) that resonated with me quite a bit: Yogas citta vrtti nirodah. The restraint of the modifications of the mind-stuff is Yoga.
"All the differences of the outside world are the outcome of your mental modification," translates Sri Swami Satchidananda. He uses the example of a ten-year-old child meeting his long-lost father for the first time.
In one minute, the father goes from the stranger at the door to the child's daddy. Does this change the man? No. Did the child's world totally change? Yes.
"The entire world is based on your thoughts and mental attitude. The entire world is your projection," he continues, with a reminder that your values may change in a mere second. Remember that, and don't stress so much about external things.
"Things outside neither bind or liberate you; only your attitude towards them does that," Satchidananda adds.
Of course, I could have just asked my friend Paul Drewes. His entire life philosophy is: Just be happy. During my times of duress Paul has let me cry on his shoulder and has consistently reminded me of that same concept.
"Can you control it? No? Stop worrying, then," he has chided me. He actually takes his own advice, too. I don't know how he does it so well, but I do admire that.
Swami Paul. I need to keep practicing and maybe one day I can get there, too.