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Dr K K Aggarwal

How to Remove Negative Thoughts

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Darkness is absence of light and similarly negative thoughts are absence of positive thoughts. The answer to negative thoughts is to bring back positive thoughts. An ideal mind is a devil’s workshop and will always think negative.Here are some ways by which you can remove negative thoughts.

  • Think differently as taught by Adi Shankaracharya. Once Menaka approached Arjuna with lust and said that she wanted to have a son like him with him. Arjuna said that why wait for 25 years consider me as you son from today.
  • Think opposite as taught by Patanjali. For example if you are having a thought to steal, silently start thinking of charity.
  • Think positive as taught by Buddha. Make a list of positive actions to be done today as the first thing in the morning and concentrate on that list. Divert your mind to the pending works. It’s a type of behavioral therapy.

Think Differently

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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There are three ways to manage stress. One is to think opposite, second is to think different and the third is to think positive.Thinking opposite was advocated by Patanjali, thinking differently by Adi Shankaracharya and thinking positive by Gautam Buddha.

Out of three approaches, the Indian Vedic philosophy focuses on thinking differently. Thinking positive and thinking opposite may not be feasible at the time of any adversity.Thinking differently has been emphasized in mythology at multiple places. The 10 heads of Ravana, five heads of Brahma, elephant head of Lord Ganesha, fish incarnation of Lord Vishnu and third eye of Lord Shiva remind us of the principle of thinking differently.We can see or analyze a person or a situation with the eyes of our physical body (physical eye) or eyes of the mind (thinking and analyzing) and eyes of the soul (conscious-based decision).Lord Buddha once said that a good action should be based on truth, should be necessary and bring happiness both for the person doing it and the society.The 3H principle advocated in the West is also based on the same principle, which means before any action think from your Head and from the multiple options available, choose from the Heart and then order the Hands to do the job.The first incarnation of Lord Vishnu, fish, indicates the capacity of swimming against the stream. The third eye of Lord Shiva symbolizes thinking from the mind and choosing the right answer from the heart. The 10 heads of Ravana and five heads of Brahma also denote thinking to get multiple options.The example of thinking differently comes from the dialogue between Urvashi and Arjuna. Once Urvashi in a mind full of Kama went to Arjuna and said “If you are not going give me a son like you today, I am going to curse you”.Arjuna was in a dilemma but he thought differently and said – “Why do you want to wait for 25 years to get a son like me from today I am your son, Mother.”

(Disclaimer: The views expressed in this write up are my own).

Spiritual Prescriptions – Controlling the Inner Noise

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Yoga Sutras of Patanjali define yoga as restraint of the mental states (Chapter 1.2). In the state of total restraint, the mind is devoid of any external object and is in its true self or the consciousness. To control the mind many Vedic scholars have given their own formulas.

Being in touch with one’s own consciousness requires restraining of the mind, intellect and ego on one hand and the triad of rajas, tamas and satwa on the other hand. Every action leads to a memory, which in turn leads to a desire and with this a vicious cycle starts.

The mental turmoil of thoughts can be equated to the internal noise and the external desires and objects to an external noise.

The process of withdrawing from the external noise with an aim to start a journey inwards the silent field of awareness bypassing the internal noise is called pratihara by Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. It involves living in a satwik atmosphere based on the dos and don’ts learnt over a period of time or as told by the scriptures.

To control inner noise based thoughts we either need to neutralize negative thoughts by cultivating opposite thoughts or kill the origin of negative thoughts.

Not allowing thoughts to occur has been one of the strategies mentioned by the scholars. One of them has been neti–neti by Yagnayakya.

The other method is to pass through these inner thoughts and not get disturbed by it and that is what the process of meditation is. This can be equated to a situation where two people are talking in an atmosphere of loud external noise. For proper communication one will have to concentrate on each other’s voice for long till the external noise ceases to disturb. In meditation, one concentrates on the object of concentration to such an extent that the noisy thoughts cease to bother or exist.

One of the ways mentioned by Adi Shankaracharya in Bhaja Govindam and by Yoga Sutras of Patanjali (Chapter 2.35) is that whenever one is surrounded by evil or negative thoughts one should meditate open the contrary thoughts. For example, if one is feeling greedy, one can think of donating something to somebody. Deepak Chopra in his book Seven Laws of Spiritual Success talks in detail about the importance of giving and sharing. He says you should never visit friends or relations empty handed. You should always carry some gift of nature, which if nothing is available can be a simple smile, compliment or a flower. By repeatedly indulging into positive behavior and thoughts, you can reduce the internal noise, which helps in making the process of meditation or conscious living a simpler one.

Washing out negative thoughts is another way mentioned by many Vedic scholars. Three minutes writing is one such exercise which anybody can do. Just before sleep anybody can do three minutes writing where you can write down all your emotions and then discard the paper. Another exercise is to reward or punish oneself at bed time for the activities done during the day by either patting or slapping yourself.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this write up are entirely my own.

Controlling the Inner Noise

By Dr K K Aggarwal
Filed Under Spirituality - Science Behind Rituals | Tagged With: , , , , , , | | Comments Off on Controlling the Inner Noise

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali define yoga as restraint of the mental states (Chapter 1.2). In the state of total restraint, the mind is devoid of any external object and is in its true self or the consciousness. To control the mind many Vedic scholars have given their own formulas.  Being in touch with one’s own consciousness requires restraining of the mind, intellect and ego on one hand and the triad of rajas, tamas and satwa on the other hand. Every action leads to a memory, which in turn leads to a desire and with this a vicious cycle starts.  The mental turmoil of thoughts can be equated to the internal noise and the external desires and objects to an external noise.  The process of withdrawing from the external noise with an aim to start a journey inwards the silent field of awareness bypassing the internal noise is called pratihara by Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. It involves living in a satwik atmosphere based on the dos and don’ts learnt over a period of time or as told by the scriptures.  To control the inner noise, we either need to neutralize negative thoughts by cultivating opposite thoughts or kill the origin of negative thoughts.  Not allowing thoughts to occur has been one of the strategies mentioned by the scholars. One of them has been neti–neti by Yajnavalkya.  The other method is to pass through these inner thoughts and not get disturbed by it and that is what the process of meditation is. This can be equated to a situation where two people are talking in an atmosphere of loud external noise. For proper communication one will have to concentrate on each other’s voice for long till the external noise ceases to disturb. In meditation, one concentrates on the object of concentration to such an extent that the noisy thoughts cease to bother or exist. One of the ways mentioned by Adi Shankaracharya in Bhaja Govindam and by Yoga Sutras of Patanjali (Chapter 2.35) is that whenever one is surrounded by evil or negative thoughts one should think contrary thoughts. For example, if one is feeling greedy, one can think of donating something to somebody. Deepak Chopra in his book “The Seven Laws of Spiritual Success” talks in detail about the importance of giving and sharing. He says you should never visit friends or relations empty handed. You should always carry some gift of nature, which if nothing is available can be a simple smile, compliment or a flower. By repeatedly indulging into positive behavior and thoughts, you can reduce the internal noise, which helps in making the process of meditation or conscious living a simpler one.  Washing out negative thoughts is another way mentioned by many Vedic scholars. Three minutes writing is one such exercise which anybody can do. Before going to bed, take three minutes to write down all your emotions and then discard the paper. Another exercise is to reward or punish oneself at bed time for the activities done during the day by either patting or slapping yourself.

You Cannot Serve Two Masters (God and Wealth)

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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This is true for both your internal spiritual journey as well as the external social journey in life. Wealth is an indicator of greed, which is one of the five known obstacles to the pathway of self-realization.

Greed according to the Patanjali is defined as possessing any material wealth more than your need.

Greed in turn is linked to attachment through any of the five senses and uncontrolled desires. Once desires are fulfilled more desires are created, which is nothing but greed. And when the desires are not fulfilled then greed gets converted into anger, which leads to loss of intellect and ultimately destruction of the body.

Lord Krishna, in the Bhagavad Gita, while explaining this to Arjuna has clearly mentioned the pathway of self destruction starting from attachment to loss of intellect and ultimately destruction of the self.

The Hindu mythology has always said that never be after money. When you are after money the knowledge or wisdom will not follow you. The classical example given is that if you are after Saraswati (God of Knowledge), Laxmi (God of Wealth) follows you and if you are after Laxmi, Saraswati may not remain with you.

God is representative of your true self and that is your consciousness, which is nothing but “Satchitananda” or the triad of truthfulness, consciousness based decisions and internal bliss or happiness. To be in touch with your consciousness you have to control your five senses through your mind and detach yourself from the egocentric desires.

Greed and wealth are representatives of attachment to the material world through one of your five senses, therefore, if you want to be in touch with your consciousness you have to be detached from the materialistic world and wealth is one of them.

There is a classical description of this phenomenon in Mahabharata in the battle of Kurukshetra when Lord Krishna became the Sarathi of Arjuna and rode the five horses chariot. The symbolic representation of the whole thing is, Lord Krishna represents your true self or consciousness; Arjuna represents the ego and the intellect; the reins of the horses represent the unstable mind and five horses represent the ever changing five senses.

Using your ego and intellect if you can tighten your mind (reins), you will be able to control the five horses (the five senses) and then you will have all the time in the world to be with Lord Krishna (your own consciousness). On the other hand, if you let the reins loose (let the mind wonder) all the horses (senses) will get uncontrolled and wander here and there (one gets attached to the materialistic world). The mind and the intellect, instead of becoming the master, then becomes the servant of the five senses and will get detached from the true self or the consciousness.

Electricity is a good servant and a bad master is a well-known saying. Something is true for the five senses. They are very good to the life provided they are controlled like servants and never treated like masters. Once they overpower you, they will create an umbrella of darkness over the mind and the intellect making you forget about the presence of soul in the body. Once this happens, you lose your dharma.

Whenever given a choice, always choose your consciousness as the master and not any of the five senses, mind, intellect or ego.

Understanding exact speech

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Upanishads, Yoga sutras of Patanjali and teachings of Gautam Buddha, all talk about “the right speech”. As per Gautam Buddha, the right speech has three components:

• It should be based on truthfulness.

• It should be necessary.

• It should be kind.

All three have to be in the same sequence with truthfulness taking the top ranking. For example, when a patient asks a doctor, “Am I going to die in the next few weeks or will I survive longer?” The truth may be that he is serious enough and may not survive but it is not necessary to speak the truth and also it is not kind. Therefore, that truth should not be spoken.

Lord Krishna in Mahabharata explained when not to speak the truth and when to speak a lie. The truth which is going to harm the society may not be spoken and a lie which can save the life of a person without harming others may be spoken.

• A truth which is necessary and kind may be spoken.

• A truth which is not necessary but kind may not be spoken.

• A truth which is necessary but not kind may not be spoken.

• A truth which is neither necessary and nor kind may not be spoken.

How to remove negative thoughts

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Darkness is absence of light and similarly negative thoughts are absence of positive thoughts. The answer

to negative thoughts is to bring positive thoughts back. Ideal mind is devils workshop and will always think

negative.

Here are the ways by which you can remove negative thoughts.

• Think differently as taught by Adi Shankaracharya. Once Menaka approached Arjuna with lust and

said that she wanted to have a son like him with him. Arjuna said that why wait for 25 years consider

me as you son from today.

• Think opposite as taught by Patanjali. For example if you are thinking of stealing, then silently start

thinking of charity.

• Think positive as taught by Buddha. Make a list of positive actions to be done today the first thing

in the morning and concentrate on that list. Divert your mind to the pending works. This is a type of

behavioral therapy.

Deepak Chopra, in his book, “How to know GOD”, he describes seven types of people with different consciousness levels. The first level is people with Fight and Flight response, who either fight or flight an adversity. Second level is people with reactive response, who are fault finders when an adversity comes.

Third, fourth and fifth levels are people with restful alertness, intuitive, and creative responses respectively. These people treat every adversity as an opportunity to do something different and work in the interest of the community.

Finally sixth and seventh levels are the people with visionary and sacred responses. These people are people with wisdom who understand consciousness and treat the microcosm within the body and the macrocosm of the nature as one.

The present Uttarakhand Natural Flood Disaster can be interpreted differently by different leaders.

People who share the fight, flight or reactive response, they would interpret it as if the God is punishing us for our sins.

Those who are in the restful alertness, intuitive or creative response, would think of the disaster as a creative opportunity to create a globalization-based new humanity on the culture or compassion instead of exploitation. Finally those who are with visionary or sacred response might see a link between the turbulence in collective consciousness of the people and the turbulence in nature.

Many theorists propose that the earth is a living biological organism. This is known as GAIA hypothesis. We and other biological organisms are just patterns of behavior in this living biological organism that we call Mother Earth. When we are agitated and turbulent our extended body or Mother Earth reflect that turbulence. In other words, the turbulence in nature and the turbulence in human beings co-arise inter-dependently.

We all know that during full moon, the mind is more agitated than during the new moon. The high tides in the ocean influence the high tides (vata function) in the human body and the human mind.

Many intellectuals have suggested that turbulence in nature can be managed by collective meditation (more than 1% of the population together at the same time) or through rituals by introducing intentions in the field of pure potentiality. This uses the principles of dharna, Dhyana, and samadhi of Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. This was the original purpose of yagnas which unfortunately today have become as empty rituals as they are not based on basic methodology of true consciousness.

In the last Tsunami episode, not a single dead body of wild animals was found. Elephants broke their chains and ran upto the hills several hours before the earthquake occurred. So did the birds who began to fly away from the affected areas. This only proves that consciousness of animals and the consciousness of the earth are inter-linked. It must be true for the human beings also but we have so severely disturbed our links with the nature that it seems we have no communication with the nature and cannot pick up nature’s warning signals. Many of the tribals also escaped the episode proving their relative nearness to the nature.

All these explanations are valid if you believe that consciousness is the primary force in the universe. You can also interpret the whole flood episode without introducing the concept of consciousness as tectonic shifts in the beds of the oceans and explain the whole thing in purely geological terms.

Some have even suggested that the testing of nuclear weapons and other violent technologies on the beds of the oceans may have accelerated these geological shifts. I think there is truth to all these explanations depending on your level of perceptions.

The present can be considered as a localized pralay involving the element of water. The classic pralay will involve all five elements. If a flood like instance occurs affecting the whole earth, it will be the pralay mentioned in Purans.

Thinking Differently

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There are three ways to manage stress. One is to think opposite, second is to think different and the third is to think positive.

Thinking opposite was advocated by Patanjali, thinking differently by Adi Shankracharya and thinking positive by Gautam Buddha. Out of three approaches, the Indian Vedic philosophy focuses on thinking differently. Thinking positive and thinking opposite may not be feasible at the time of any adversity.

Thinking differently has been emphasized in mythology at multiple places. Ten heads of Ravana, five heads of Brahma, elephant head of Lord Ganesha, Fish incarnation of Lord Vishnu and third eye of Lord Shiva remind us of the principle of thinking differently.

We can see or analyze a person or a situation with the eyes of our physical body (physical eye) or eyes of the mind (thinking and analyzing) and eyes of the soul (conscious based decision).

Lord Buddha once said that a good action should be based on truth, should be necessary and bring happiness both for the person doing it and the society.

The 3H principle advocated in the West is also based on the same which means before any action think from your Head and from multiple options available, choose from the Heart and then order the Hands to do the job.

The first incarnation of Lord Vishnu Fish indicates the capacity of swimming against the stream. The third eye of Lord Shiva means thinking from the mind and choosing the right answer from the heart. The ten heads of Ravana and five heads of Brahma also indicate thinking to get multiple options.

The example of thinking differently comes from the dialogue between Urvashi and Arjuna. Once Urvashi in a mind full of Kamawent to Arjuna and said “If you are not going give me a son like you today, I am going to give you a curse”.   Arjuna was in a dilemma but he thought differently and said – “Why do you want to wait for 25 years to get a son like me from today I am your son:  Mother.”