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November 29, 2018

There are thousands of systems in the Body. Respiration, Digestion, Circulation, Lymphatic system, Muscular system, Skeletal System all of which are functioning independently. There is a  holistic organization and at the same time there is an independence of each of the organs that function in the Body. These systems of the Body need to cope up with the a)  Environmental stress like the pollution in the atmosphere. The smoke and smells that are around us in the air. The air that we breathe inside our own bedrooms and the cubicle type of housing systems that we have created are factors that our body needs to adjust to. Our choices with respect to these aspects are very limited. b) There are the existential stresses that are created by the food that we eat, the jobs that we need to fulfill, the travels that we need to undertake etc. Little can be done on these factors too. Of course, there are choices that we can make on these inputs but they are minimal in nature. c) However, there are the Attitudinal stresses on which we have the maximum control and influence. It is not what happens to us that matters. It is how we respond to what happens to us that Matters, says Pujya Sukhabodhananda. Our responses to the events that happen around us depend heavily on the Attitude that we nourish. A jewish prisoner in the German jail for fourteen years continues to maintain an attitude of enjoying his music even in the most incarcerated circumstances of the Jail. He says,”No one can take away your personal liberties and sense of freedom, unless you give it away ”. Attitudinal systems arise from the Mind. A Mind that we have nourished. The Mind being the flow of thoughts, we have to see the structure of the Mind, that consciously or unconsciously creates stress.

A footballer takes the ball from the centerline and dabbles with the ball, tackles a host of defenders, runs zigzag with the ball using his foot, the mind in total concentration of the ball. He finally nears the goal with the help of  timely passes. The activity of the Mind of such a footballer at the game are indeed enormous. The spot decisions and choices that he takes are fast and multiple. Yet he does not experience Stress. The stress is not in the activity or in the reality, but in our resistance and denial of the reality. A migratory bird flies 27000 kms over the pacific in  a three month period and yet it remains energetic. Hence the work factor or the muscle factor is not the creator of stress. The Stress is experienced as much as we allow it.

A Mind that nourishes Wonderment, a thankfulness and enthusiasm does not experience Stress. When we fight with WHAT IS then the stress is created. Any event or a situation can fall on our Resistance centre or in our Allowing centre. When the situation is perceived as a reality without the interference of the judgmental Mind or the perfectionist Mind and holistically accepted as the reality, the Mind is in harmony. When the situation falls on Judgment and “should be “ Mind with an obsession to Perfection, then the same causes a frustration and Stress. The situation is the same, the event is unaltered, yet it causes different experiences in the two minds. Hence the trained Mind alone that has the discipline of looking at situations in its purity without preconceived notions and conclusions alone has the skill to avoid Stress. Challenges and problems are sure to happen to every human being without a waiver. Our prayer is not to avoid problems as much as it is to have the skill to handle them when it happens. The Reality is an event or a situation. By itself it causes no Stress and does not intend to do so. It is the narrative around the Reality that causes the Stress. Every situation and problems give us a teaching and a lesson, but it is largely determined by the Perceiver’s mind and thus cause the Narrative. These lessons are valuable but they are to be kept as our reference points and consultant that is editable and supple for change. Stress is therefore an inhabitant in an untrained Mind.