Why do most of us want to have our Minds continuously occupied & keep ourselves busy, with one activity or other, inwardly and outwardly ?
Most of us want to have our minds continually occupied , so that , we are prevented from seeing ourselves , as we actually are. We are afraid to be empty. We are afraid to look at ourselves
Most people are constantly occupied with something (even after retiring from jobs) - with puja, with the repetition of certain words, with worrying over this or that - because they are frightened to be alone with themselves. You try being alone, without any form of distraction, and you will see how quickly you want to get away from yourself and forget what you are. That is why this enormous structure of professional amusement, of automated distraction, is so prominent a part of what we call civilization. If you observe you will see that people the world over are becoming more and more distracted, increasingly sophisticated and worldly. The multiplication of pleasures, the innumerable books that are being published, the newspaper pages filled with sporting events, TV soap opera’s etc., - surely, all these indicate that we constantly want to be amused. Because we are inwardly empty, dull, mediocre, we use our relationships and our social reforms as a means of escaping from ourselves. Have you noticed how lonely most people are? And to escape from loneliness we run to temples, churches, or mosques, we dress up and attend social functions, we watch television, listen to the radio, read, and so on.
Each one of us has an image of what we think we are or what we should be, and that image, that picture, entirely prevents us from seeing ourselves as we actually are.
One must learn the art of looking, not only at the clouds and the flowers, at the movement of a tree in the wind, but actually looking at ourselves as we are, not saying, 'It is ugly', 'It is beautiful, or 'Is that all?', all the verbal assertions that one has with regard to oneself. When we can look at ourselves clearly, without the image, then perhaps we shall be able to discover what is true for ourselves. And that truth is not in the realm of thought but of direct perception, in which there is no separation between the observer and the observed.
When you remove all the ‘labels’ attached to you, namely, your name, profession, lineage, place, roles in the society etc., what is that remains in “You” . A big ‘NOTHING’. ‘Shunya’. Shunya means ‘void’ or ‘emptiness’ or “Nothingness” in snaskrit. It is the true nature of all phenomena, devoid of all individual self or substance. This space of stillness is deeply replenishing to life. When we allow ourself to rest for some time in stillness, we can get back in touch with the essential quality of pure being, just as we are – “NOTHINGNESS” . And nobody wants and fears to travel into nothingess or emptiness or void . Hence we keep ourselves busy or engage ourselves with something or the other, to avoid entering to the true nature of the being-SELF.
Meditation as per Hindu philosophy is used to reach a state of nothingness and peace, or Buddhist nirvana, which refers to attainment of salvation by merging into the void of eternity.
(with inputs from J.Krishnamurthy talks)