“Sit down before fact as a little child, be prepared to give up every preconceived notion, follow humbly wherever and to whatever abysses nature leads, or you shall learn nothing. I have only begun to learn content and peace of mind since I have resolved at all risks to do this.” Thomas Huxley
Very often we feel that our minds are too restless, filled with disturbing thoughts of “what-ifs”, “whys”, “hows” and “when”. Yet the reality is that all these are suppositions of things that have yet to happen or sequence of events that we are trying to predict. The truth is man by nature is restless and in trying to alleviate this feeling, we dwell in unnecessary chaos. Finally we claim that the peace is disturbed.
“If you want peace of mind, stop fighting with your thoughts.” Anonymous
Peace of mind revolves around a state of calmness both mental and emotional, not harbouring thoughts of no worries, fears or stress. Then the mind is quiet and one experiences a sense of happiness with freedom. Although such peaceful moments are not rare, they are hard to attain unless we empty our thoughts once in a while. Once we practice the art of “let it be, let go” and putting our stress in a jar to hand over to God, we then discover that the weight of jar has reduced after sometime. Slowly over time, the peace within returns and the days don’t become dreary anymore.
Once Buddha was walking from one town to another town with a few of his followers. This was in the initial days. While they were travelling, they happened to pass a lake. They stopped there and Buddha told one of his disciples, “I am thirsty. Do get me some water from that lake there.” The disciple walked up to the lake. When he reached it, he noticed that some people were washing clothes in the water and, right at that moment, a bullock cart started crossing through the lake. As a result, the water became very muddy, very turbid. The disciple thought, “How can I give this muddy water to Buddha to drink!” So he came back and told Buddha, “The water in there is very muddy. I don’t think it is fit to drink.” After about half an hour, again Buddha asked the same disciple to go back to the lake and get him some water to drink. The disciple obediently went back to the lake. This time he found that the lake had absolutely clear water in it. The mud had settled down and the water above it looked fit to be had. So he collected some water in a pot and brought it to Buddha. Buddha looked at the water, and then he looked up at the disciple and said, “See what you did to make the water clean. You let it be and the mud settled down on its own and you got clear water. Your mind is also like that. When it is disturbed, just let it be. Give it a little time. It will settle down on its own. You don’t have to put in any effort to calm it down. It will happen. It is effortless.”
What did Buddha emphasize here? He said, “It is effortless.” Having ‘peace of mind’ is not a strenuous job; it is an effortless process. When there is peace inside you, that peace permeates to the outside. It spreads around you and in the environment, such that people around start feeling that peace and grace.