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Nityananda! Gauranga! Hare Krishna! We all know that, somehow or other, if we can learn to control our mind, then we can accomplish many things in our life. So naturally, an of us are interested in controlling our mind. At the same time we are all well aware of the disastrous consequences of an uncontrolled mind. If the mind of a person is uncontrolled, it will make him miserable throughout his life and may harass him so much that he may even go to the extent of committing suicide.
Every intelligent person should learn to control his mind and lead a peaceful life. There are many institutions offering courses on Mind Control, but most of them don't go to the root of the problem. They are based on only a superficial knowledge of the mind and the way in which it works. Mind control without proper understanding of oneself, God and the purpose of life is just an eyewash; it can yield no tangible benefit.
The mind frequently causes us a variety of problems. And amateur attempts to tackle these problems are bound to fail since the body-mind mechanism is extremely complex. Therefore the first step in mind control is to understand the answers to the following basic questions: What is this body? Who am I? What is the purpose of this creation? In order to get authentic answers to these questions, the best course of action is to approach the super-intelligent Designer of this body, the Mastermind behind the creation, namely, the Supreme Lord, and ask Him, "Why did You create all these problems?" This approach involves tackling the problems of life by going to their root cause and so it can provide a permanent solution. Just as when we get a disease, we go to a doctor, an expert in that field, to diagnose the root cause of the disease and get it cured, similarly we need the help of a guru or a spiritual master, an expert in the knowledge of the essence of life, who can teach us why our mind and body give us so much suffering in this world and the way to permanently get rid of all suffering.
Krishna, the Supreme Lord, is universally acclaimed as the jagat guru or the spiritual master of the whole universe. And He is teaching Arjuna in Bhagavad-gita how to control one's mind and how to lead a pure life. Right at the outset of the Bhagavad-gita, Lord Krishna explains to Arjuna that we are not these material bodies; we are actually spirit souls. This body is simply like a dress; it is just an external covering. The atma, the eternal being, who is the eternal servant of God, is now trapped in this body exactly like a parrot trapped in a cage. Being trapped in the body we are constantly suffering due to the miseries caused by the body and the mind. It is not that we are suffering only now; our history of suffering dates back to many, many lifetimes. Therefore according to all the scriptures the ultimate goal of life, the only way to lasting happiness, is to liberate oneself from the cycle of birth and death and to achieve the kingdom of God. That is our original home and it is from there that we have come to this foreign place, the material world.
Due to our stay in the material world, our mind has become the storehouse of varieties of thoughts, impressions and unfulfilled desires. These material impressions on the mind drag the atma from one body to another, birth after birth. Until all these material impressions are wiped out from the mind and pure spiritual consciousness is established, there is no possibility of returning back to the kingdom of God. But as long as we are in this material world, we are inescapably stuck up with the body and the mind. And the mind gives us a variety of sufferings.
Herein we will try to learn a few tips, which can help us to control the mind. But these tips have to be applied while a person simultaneously engages in cultivating knowledge about God, the ultimate goal of life and about himself. There is no overnight, short cut to control the mind; if it were so easy, modern man would not talk so much about mind control. (Compiled by Radheshyam Dasa, Jaigopala Dasa, Chaitanya Charana Dasa, Sundara Vara Dasa.)