Do you control your mind or does your mind control you? This quote by Guru Nanak dev ji is guiding us that if we can conquer our mind, we can conquer the material world. Read below on the story and analogy of mind like a horse that creates havoc when you try to tame it.
- REFLECT: as you sit to meditate, are you easily able to focus or many thoughts come and distract you?
- RESPOND: by using the technique of giving mind an object to focus on like breathing. When thoughts come which they will, simply observe without getting caught up in them and return back to breathing.
- INTEGRATE: Any time in future, you negative thoughts come and bother you about something that happened in past or you worry about what may happen in future: Pause, Breathe and come to the present moment. Cultivate taming the mind.
“Conquer your mind and Conquer the world.”
Guru Nanak Dev Ji
This quote Man jeetai jag jeet, is a very popular and often quoted from Gurbani by Guru Nanak dev ji. It is pointing towards conquering the material world. Conquering the mind from Sikh point of view is about conquering Haumai (Ego).
Haumai (Punjabi: ਹਉਮੈ) is the concept of self-centeredness (egoism or Ahankar) in Sikhism. This concept was taught by Guru Nanak Dev Ji, as the source of five evils: lust, covetousness, wrath, pride and attachment. According to Sikh Gurus teachings, it is Haumai that leads to endless cycles of transmigration (rebirth), and makes a person “manmukh”. They state that one must turn away from Haumai, become a “gurmukh” and follow the path of the Guru to receive God’s grace.In Sikhism, the Haumai can only be overcome through meditation on God’s name (Naam), Simran and Sewa. READ MORE.
About the Author of Quote: Guru Nanak Dev Ji. (Gurmukhi: ਗੁਰੂ ਨਾਨਕ), was the founder and first Guru of Sikhism, was born in the year 1469, in the village Talwandi which is located in the Punjab region of the Indian subcontinent. Read More
STORY & Analogy :
*edited based on post at Sikh Sangat.
Once some Sikh devotees came to see Guru Nanak Dev Ji and on the topic of mind said: “Guru Ji, We try to do the Nitnem (Sikh prayers), but when we sit down to start the prayers, many Thoughts begin to enter our minds. We try to focus our mind, but it mind goes all over the place and we don’t have it in us to fight with it”
Guru Ji asked the devotees, “So what is it you do when you lose your will to fight” the devotee replied, “We stop the prayers”.
Guru Ji thought for some while, and then asked the devotees “Do you have horses?” to which they replied, “why yes of course”. Guru Ji then began to question and explain, “When your horse gets ill, what do you do?”
The devotees said, “We make a medicine powder for the horse, full with antidotes, and feed it to the horse”.
Guru Ji again questioned, “So, you make the medicine and put it out for the horse and he eats it?”
The devotees shook their heads, “No Guru Ji, the horse does not like the taste of the medicine, it is very bitter”.
Guru Ji then asked how do they making the horse eat the medicine?
They said “What we must do Guru Ji, is that at first we take the medicine in our hands and make a fist., Then one of us tries to appease the horse while the other puts his fist into the mouth of the horse”
Guru Ji listened intently, and continued to question, “So, the horse will eat the medicine out of your fist?”
Again, the devotees shook their heads, “No Guru Ji, the horse screeches, cries and winces. It struggles and do all he can to try and eject the fist from his mouth. But eventually, the horse gets tired and realize the only way we will leave him will be if he takes the medicine”
Guru Ji smiled, and advised his devotees, “The horse does all he can to refrain from taking in what is good for him, he screams and runs away from the medicine. Perhaps he knows medicine will cure him of the pains… but eventually he tires.
The mind too, is like a horse. It is determined to stay away, and not take in the medicine of Naam. But amidst the screaming, shouting, the beating the mind eventually will tire and when it tires, it will realize that it will have to take this medicine of Naam, and only then will the pain be eased”
We invite you to learn Simran Walking meditation with WAHEGURU mantra s a way to practice meditating.
Simran Walking Meditation: Sikh meditation with mantra “Waheguru” :
Simran means (Gurmukhi ਸਿਮਰਨ, Hindi: सिमरण, सिमरन) is a Punjabi word derived from the Sanskrit word स्मरण smaraṇa, “the act of remembrance, reminiscence, and recollection,” which leads to the realization. Simran is a commonly used term as a verb in Gurmukhi, which refers to ‘meditating’ of the Nām, or name, of God.
Read More: Simran Walking Meditation