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Way of thinking
“How are you thinking whatever you2 are thinking?” is rather odd question and you are I am sure you are not going to play this first ball of the first over. How would you answer that crazy question? How means what? This article (a very convenient way of avoiding saying I frequently) does not dare change your philosophy about anything, except on this how. Howsoever, take care that how you think does not change what you think. You have a distinct way of making faces when you want to leave when the host does not understand, of heaving when you are urinating, etc, etc. Likewise, you have a distinct way of thinking. Had some other person been in the same situation, he3 would have thought something else. Way of thinking is a distinct matter from matter of thinking! The matter of this topic is about a certain way of thinking, which I am calling natural (you will call this euphemism for regressiveness…as you go along). Also like most of the Government of India schemes, hardly anything can be achieved through this exercise.
Kingdom of thoughts
Each thought has a life cycle (life cycle is a cliché - technically incorrect word even when applied to the Hindu rebirth philosophy. One life is like a loop, but the eternal life is linear. …Just to remind you that here many words have been used quite incorrectly …perfection is another name of hardship.). First, a thought comes in the mind just as a cloud appears in the sky from somewhere (If this was a too beautiful example, then let me say, just like your boss assigns you a disinteresting piece of work from nowhere.). Then the mind pullulates it into an idea (just as the creative teams of Zee News, Star News, Aaj Tak (literally means “till today” but most news content is about things after 1-10 years to after 1000 years), NDTV, etc pullulate trivia into national urgencies.). The idea later takes shape of an activity that in turn results into a palpable creation in the world outside the mind. Some thoughts branch out to build opinions, beliefs, personality, and value system that are rather abstract and volatile creations. A mind is very fertile and it procreates myriads of thoughts. However, each thought is not as propitious and the proportion of the incarnate thoughts is not very different from that of the successful sperms. A mind is full of deadwoods (or skeletons, if you are a horror movies’ fan) or sometimes half-deadwoods of half-abandoned thoughts.
Hindi: Nivichar. The correct and complete title of this article should have been “the technical mechanism to administer unconditioned way of thinking”. But had I written something like that; there would be very high likelihood of the write-up being administered to the recycle bin. The word natural does not mean antiscientific as it does to many. Scientific thinking is a subset of natural thinking as implied here. 2 I generally use the pronoun ‘one’ than ‘you’, but there is a malicious purpose here, which you will soon discover… 3 The situation in my mind was little different, hence I did not write she as usual most English writers do.
Each one of us lives in a virtual kingdom (or a republic to be precise) of thoughts! How you think and how those who (including the top boss sitting in the skies if you believe in Him4) matter in your life think, decide the course of your life. The laptop5 on which you are reading this article was just a thought in your mind at some point of time. Then the contagion spread to your Dad’s mind. It later turned to be a tangible object at your home. What is true of your laptop is also true of the gigantic structures engineers construct and the food your wife/maid is cooking (Please hold on6 for a while and enjoy it later.). It is possible that this very universe was once just a thought in the mind of God (it is a grandiloquent style in Indian Adhyatm7 to make such megastatements8 towards cosmic9 equity). Most things surrounding us can be seen as a complex labyrinth of interacting thoughts at various stages of life cycle.
Mind and its mechanism
A mind, for the sake of reading this article (being a management consultant, disclaimers just ooze in from my keyboard), can be considered (diluting it further…) to have three ‘abstract’ (losing it…) parts. The first one is the ‘conscious’ mind. It is all about the thoughts and things you are aware of and acknowledge responsibility for (such as that you took 6-7 large pegs with the thirst of a Saharite and that you don’t recollect exactly what happened later). It is like RAM in computer. All the dormant things are not in the RAM, but only as many thoughts as necessary for thinking are taken from brain or the hard disk (or for some of you…a server, a super-server, a grey matter ocean) and other places. All the things in the brain’s memory were in the form of conscious thoughts in the mind at some point or other (you wouldn’t open a Japanese newspaper one day and discover that you already knew the language). Mind is the only entry route, for the thoughts, to the memory hall of the brain (The theory has many shortcomings…but I won’t elaborate.). The second part of a mind is the subconscious mind. When some thoughts in the hard disc get processed there itself without coming into the RAM to create something new or just transpire there from nowhere (which the conscious mind would have liked to check (in all senses) or know first), it’s called subconscious thinking. These thoughts in this part of mind love to stun the egotistic super-boss described in next paragraph. This article has nothing to do with this part of mind. The third component of a mind is the self (the first two categories were well-known and boring to read. You must have some curiosity about this third one.). When the conscious mind (or only mind henceforth as the word conscious10 is not short and not very cozily spelleable, also by very
The evolutionists must be waiting for the next unmappable episode of the rule-bound Big Bang serial to unfold. But let’s not always mention this heavenly intervention or randomness of evolution. 5 It applies to your Her Tenderly too if she is functioning as a laptop. 6 Reading this article 7 English: Approximately “refined= adhi, ‘understanding of the’ self= atm”. There is not exact word for this but spiritual science is quite close. 8 Hindi: Brahmyawakya 9 Hindi: Charachar jagat – together set of living and non-living beings 10 It is similar to alert words in defense/police/NCC parades
nature it is very burdensome word to retain in the “ ” mind for long), has its own stand, the self takes decisions. These decisions could be based on inputs from mind and several other physioneuro-psychological factors. The self induces many thoughts in the mind. It also carries many thoughts into the mind from outside world. The self also soils or purges many thoughts in passing them to the mind. Self includes your memory, brain11, body, and soul (just in order to complete the list). Mind reports to self without insubordination, but it is an independent entity (a relation a little better than reserve banks financing state deficits.). When you say you did this even though your mind was saying something else you should be able to make out difference between the mind and the self. Certain products of mind, certain thoughts become so inalienable12 to the self that the self no more wants the mind to process them and though they are part of mind system they look part of the self system. Even if mind processes thoughts on these aspects in a different fashion (dilemma), the self just squashes those inventions away. Hence though beliefs, opinions, philosophies, values, morals, ethics, etc are under the ambit of mind, they can safely said to be belonging to the self. This article has nothing to do with this (meaning self) part of mind as well (If you an eye for it, you must have realized that I am the kind of person who would pay attention to a frolicking baby than the sober adults on a goodwill visit. For self-convenience, though according to some it might have seriously compromised with the subject of the article, I have chosen not to talk about the complex, uncontrollable, abstract, illogical, irrational, instinctive, etc, etc aspects of the mind). It is immaterial where the mind is located as long as it is communicating with the self. If you uncomfortable with an unlocated (this well rhymes with uncomfortable but is not in the dictionary) object, listen to the Indian Ocean-Kandisa album and synchronize your body in unison with the music vertically. Then do it laterally (I tend use such word for living beings. There has been overdose of lateral sections in school biology classes. I mean sideways.) and then back and forth (Z-axis). Your mind is at the inter-section of the three planes of motion (Had I told you something easier, you would not have believed it…mind is not a tangible object and one should not delve into such ideas...apologies for making a point in a roundabout way.). For the time being, let’s presume (if you are the Lord of the Suspicionists, call the very paraphernalia with which you are making sense of this article as mind) that mind is a real object, though abstract and intangible. Most of us (I am so concerned about not imposing anything specifically on any particular individual –mustn’t you concede?) say that mind (I mean the henceforth wallah part of mind) is not controllable. But that is not true at all (If you have just started disagreeing with many statements made till now, there are miles to go in subsequent paragraphs.). Mind is very much under one’s conscious control or at least management. It is the self who is unruly (Or I have defined mind and self that way – so that you cannot argue against this). Mind is a multiplex with only one spectator – the self (henceforth called you. Please don’t feel that I am dragging you inside here.). The theatre of mind has several features and faculties. In this theatre,13 you can
Separately mentioned only for relevance. I don’t want to say that brain is not part of body. Hindi: Ekrup, tadakar 13 Some people’s mind may be an IPod, where the screen is small and flipping is frequent playing unusual file types.
choose the movie to be run. You can also choose the ambience of theatre, audio-visual settings, and speed of play. You can make change is the story and cast of the movie completely at your discretion. Mind can run any program stored even on a super-server at Hanuman speed14. This is like fetching up one particular molecule from the deep ocean almost on the spot 15 . Remember that mind absolute sovereignty in conducting its affairs. The external interference cannot dictate things to mind and make it believe something unwillingly. Mind cannot be raped. But it can choose to acquiesce to such acts.
What is thinking16?
Thinking is the process of your running the show in the theatre of the mind. Thoughts are the protagonists in the movie of the mind, some of which you consciously cast in and some dropped in errantly. If the mind is a laboratory, then17 the thoughts are chemicals. The layers of the mind can also be compared with those of the Earth. The mind has gigantic magnet at the core, bit mystic even to the self (the self described above, the side hero of this story. Not the mind-self.) Then there is boiling lava (I mean the quantum and not the temperature…otherwise you would get offended) which is the value system. It rarely surfaces, but intensely exerts pressure on both sides (what I mean is one generally does not try to “see” one’s value system and its occult foundation even below it). Covering that is the crust of impregnable ‘ego’. Ego in turn covered by visible layer of personality – the surface of the planet (this is because you just cannot change any person into any other person though there is no reason why that should not be possible. The ego comes in the way, you know!) On the top of that is atmosphere indicating the part transparent, part visible, fluid, ranging between flagrant and tranquil ‘behavior’. Behavior and personality are highly correlated, just like moisture in the air and water bodies on the surface are. Though I said mind is the theatre and thoughts are the cast – the base material that makes mind is essentially a thought (like a laboratory (walls, etc) too is made of chemicals). The thoughts over a long period of time pile up and make concrete layers of mind. (Hence, we see sometimes something called change of mind when one discards a lot of existing layers and assumes new stock from the godown of memory). Ancient Indic18 literature says that (well, not that I have read it profusely, but I know it does so…) everything in the cosmos is made up of a base element called Bramh. Likewise, the thoughts make up the psyche. Mind becomes more and more laden with thoughts just as a river accumulates raindrops and rivulets as times passes.
There is a praise song for Lord Hanuman – Manashi Takile Maage, Gatichi TuLna Nase – There is no comparison of His speed, He takes over the mind. Thank God, Lord Rama did not appoint Him as a driver. 15 Gradually you will build an opinion that I had been a serious student of all the subjects during schooling. Note that I also intend to prove that you were not a good student! 16 Does this need to be thought about? 17 Visual Basic Impact…sorry 18 This is curcumlocatory and clandestine way of meaning that this article is meant for the international audience.
In a relation, it is advisable to understand the mind than the thought alone of a person. Thought can be influenced; mind is difficult to be made so19.
Degree of conviction
To clearly understand what is written here, you must know (this is not as if I have used less confusing terminology 20 above) what I imply by terms like truth, knowledge, understanding, belief, opinion, analysis and a thought. A truth is something that is true in the absolute context with an absolute perspective or in other words -is known to the God (or to the Scientists the Great if they claim so). We are not going to talk anything about any truth because of circular reference problem (It is quite irritating, but the general tone of this paragraph is that no ‘human’ reader of it knows a single truth about anything!). Let’s come to ‘a’ knowledge since nothing can be verified absolutely, due to scientific and all that limitations to explore a truth. In a specific frame of reference, something that does not contradict with itself, resulting into no illogicality is tantamount to a knowledge. One’s knowledge 21 could be true or untrue from absolute perspective but it is true and true only22 from the thinker’s perspective. “The Earth revolves around the Sun” is our knowledge (truth being known to God or ‘equivalent’ scientists!). An understanding23 is knowledge with a foundation not as strong as that of knowledge and one generally does not expect others to have a different understanding when same information is available to all. A belief is something yours is one and someone else’s is the other and that is not insane according to you. An opinion is your own belief; yet open for change, provided reasons are there. Analysis is the process of changing status of convictions from any one these to any other (thought to belief, etc)24. Illustration of conviction system: Truth: The Earth revolves around the Sun or whatever... Knowledge: People (hence I) know that the Earth revolves around the Sun. The otherwise argument is illogical. Understanding: Earth revolves around the Sun (as it is common observation), those who think otherwise are insane. Belief: Earth revolves around the Sun (Some others believe that it is stationary – does not appeal to me but could be true.) Opinion: Earth revolves around the Sun (Some others believe that it is stationary, which is acceptable to me.) Inadvertently, for every individual, every knowledge, belief, understanding, belief, etc is as good as a truth.
The neurologists’, psychiatrists’, and psychologists’ communities, if reading this, must be wondering at the confidence with which I am saying things. I don’t want to redefine things and have least interest in these sciences. I just mean to put forth the words in the sense I would like you to take them. 20 Blame it on want of word generation capacity in English 21 One must appreciate the choice of word ‘Ved’ or knowledge, the real name of contemporary Hinduism, which delved into query into the abstract. 22 Hindi: hi, Marathi: ch 23 Hindi: Dharanaa 24 Work-In-Progress (WIP) in industrial terms.
There is a good debate in the scientific community on whether the thoughts are words or pictures. Words are relatively recent evolution, but even pictures describe only visual input. For the time being (Don’t be afraid that I will explain it somewhere ahead, I mean even till the end of this article), let’s not go into it. (the symbolic representation of thought is not important here.) We are talking about expressible thoughts, mostly through words. Thoughts are complete importful sentences and not single words25. Thoughts are not questions, questions mean an analysis or incomplete thought. Thoughts are not also sentence with auxiliary verb ‘should26’. (for the sake of completeness, not even the imperatives). Note the thoughts are complete assertive statements or negations. Thoughts are the recipe for knowledge, beliefs, etc. Intelligence is ‘one’ of the manifestations of the mind and the self. It has no proper meaning. There is one more word in Hindi to measure the capability of mind – Pratibha. There is no equal word in English but it can roughly be transliterated as the highest manifestation (among several people) of the self. Why I told this about thoughts here is that to know about natural way of thinking, these words should not be taken in their usual meaning.
Measurement of conviction system
Answer the following questions, without any modification, without prolonged deliberation in your mind, within maximum 4-5 minutes. Just rephrase them to assertions or negations27. 1. Do you think that survival of the fittest is a law of nature? 2. Do you think that this universe originated from a event called the Big Bang? 3. Do you think that resources are limited and wants are unlimited? 4. Do you think that nature around us is/has been evolved and not consciously designed? 5. Do you think that this creation of the God, if it is so or otherwise, is imperfect? 6. Do you think that the humanity is being more and more civilized every coming day and our ancestors were barbaric? 7. Do you believe in Newton’s first law28 or principle or conservation of mass and energy? 8. Do you believe that mathematics is language of nature? 9. Do you think that your existence 29 and existence of your surroundings is a transcendental mystery? 10. Do you think that nature is neutral than benevolent? 11. Do you think that you blindly tread the rut of life, copying others, without much thought to your own close-to-heart feelings?
Take the word cow, the famous essay you wrote in class VII. The word cow – a small symbol means – the world – the living world – the animal word – tamed agricultural animals – milk – milk products-…so so.. her own world. Hence, don’t confuse between symbolic representation of 1000 thoughts and a thought. A word is smaller in looks than a sentence but it may have a huge invisible body. What the thought is made of is not important to anyone other than researcher on that topic. For our purpose, we must be able distinguish between what is a thought, what is not and what is a collection of thoughts. 26 Hindi: Vidyarth 27 How many are yes and how many no has nothing to with the exercise. 28 Please don’t google it now, just recall whether you believed it when you read it. 29 A clear no no is a clear no no. You have to say about causation of existence’s properties.
12. Do you think that you behave well by choice and as such you can choose to behave badly and that there is no scientific or other basis for behaving well and it is just a social practice? Now call each of them truth, knowledge, consideration, belief, opinion, analysis, etc as you deem fit and make a count of each category. The more the count of truths or knowledges compared that one opinions or beliefs, stronger the conviction system (well, does not necessarily always mean that you are a headache for the ones around you)30. You may select a different set of questions31 (dealing with your thinking preferably from others), if you think the above questions have not revealed your degree of conviction. Then, just for example sake, in each case, believe (or know?) the opposite and try to justify (first by giving opposite examples and then by questioning the basis of belief) that thought as if you previously did not belong to your “original philosophy”. Please drop your ego before you proceed to the exercise. Every mind has a very high degree of self-correctness. For a fair deal to the study, you need to make your mind malleable and ductile32. If you are strongly convicted (cool down…unusual usage) thinker, you are unlikely to entertain natural thinking or practice it practically.
The (un)daunting task of thinking
There is super-hit Hindi movie called “Jane Bhi Do Yaaron” which roughly means ‘let it be’ or don’t think! Why is that typically a comedy is illustrious and a serious movie is an ignored documentary? Why is one scared of thinking though there is no cost of thinking and there is no direct or indirect (I am just recovering from Pranab Mukherjee effect who presented his budget yesterday) tax on thinking. The fraction of energy spent on thinking in brain too must be miniscule compared to that spent in its other hectic functions People needlessly end up thinking that thinking is endless33. Whatever may be the number of thoughts that compose (in the sense constitute…otherwise most thoughts do the opposite) a mind, but it is finite. People generally like to compare mind with the anadi, anant, agamya and agadh34 (all these words mean ‘infinite’, the difference being the concept is not 3-D, 4-D, n-D in English) banyan tree that Krishna sited in the beginning of 15th chapter (…to make the search easier, you may do a CONTROL+F for the word ‘ashwatth’) of Geeta. We presume that thinking, like this endless tree, has thoughts as its nodes and the words as its branches. In fact, thoughts are independent residents of mind (as sentences) or at the most families.
Some of you may allege that I have chosen questions in such a fashion that you get ‘highly’ convicted! I tried to select the most unimportant question in an attempt not to influence your philosophy that really matters in your daily life. 32 I would not go to expect change in the metallic frame. 33 The thought of thinking that thinking is endless is a big paradox as we immediately take it and stop thinking on it. 34 Hindi: Sans origin, sans end, sans reach, sans depth respectively
Thinking could be stressful because it directly deals with human volitions and affectations35. Everyone is an expert driver of the vehicle of the mind and knows the clutch, break and accelerator (open minded people can be compared with dainty open-roof cars) of it very well. It is just that city of mind has treacherous stretches in it and we always prefer to take bypasses. You are definitely going to differ with me (rather brush me aside on this) but I believe that every normal individual has equal mental capability. It is the thinking (and the one-can-never-escapefrom fate, of course)36 that decide the state of affairs of one’s life. Thoughts must get settled, stopped. The word thinking, in usual parlance, means ‘thinking a lot’ by default. The excellence in thinking can be measured by the level of settled thoughts. By this standard, everyone (you may continue to believe that you are one of the select privileged ones) is a satisfactory thinker for most of the occasions in one’s life.
This sub-title is not going to be a passive or finish-and-forget reading, if you take the opinions here personally. Even otherwise, you are unlikely to like it as it expects you to work on something while you are already fuming with a lot of antagonism for the assumptions made regarding you without having any knowledge about you. By non-passive I don’t mean to engage you in rigorous and risky mental tasks (such as - Dial your mobile contact beginning with a random alphabet and converse without any premeditation37. I am sure the guy will give you tough time.) nor do I intend to put you in any hardship38. I am just preparing you for an ordeal ahead, if you are one of those who give a try to some weird thing. There are various levels of thinking which show the level of maturity of an individual. These are: not thinking, thinking, adequate thinking, proper39 thinking, structured thinking, and at the end natural thinking. There is one term that cannot be correctly placed in above series – conditioned thinking. It is thinking that would have not occurred in the normal situations but happens because thoughts are processed through preset rules the foundation of which is not verified at the outset.
It could have been written in simpler words but I wanted to show off that I have read Rodget’s Thesaurus. 36 You must be irritated with the fact that there are no literary guidelines on number of nuisance footnotes and brackets. 37 Hindi: Purvavlokan. Don’t think what you are going to talk until the phone is taken. 38 Generally, such kind of useless reading best suited for lying supine on the bed, legs hanging in the air, a free hand periodically dumping “pakodas” pickled in sausages in saliva brimming mouth and then intermittently whisking the crumbs from the cheeks. Pakoda, an Indian snacks delicacy, is mouth watering word. By now, many readers of Indian kind would have even “ordered” their wives to fry pakodas and would have thanked me for bringing the salutary thought to the fore of their mind. 39 This means technically correct thinking. If you have wondered that there is no mention of good thinking, this whole article is about it. This is funny to say so, but even if you don’t think that you are good, for a moment assume that you are so. This is especially for those who are shy of calling themselves good even in their mind out of humility or suspicion.
Here you are expected to do some writing stuff alongside. The exercise is simple. Note that you have to give answers in complete sentences (assertions and negations as far as possible). 1. Write down most beautiful moments of your life. 2. Write down the most magnificent people in your personal life. 3. Write down the top-most priorities over the “entire40” period of your life. 4. Write down aspects of your ordinary life you love most. 5. Write down big things that you would like to do to the world. Please do not start writing your autobiography before moving to the next paragraph. Write the rubbish worth mention that comes to your mind –sans inhibition (except fear of Marthi: Lotalane, Hindi: Belan, English: pillow) - you are not going get any marks for it. You need not physically write anything if you have “mental capability41” to generate and remember such list in proper order. Be very specific in choice of words and totality of meaning of what you are writing. I mean you should not draw some other meaning later. There is no word limit but you can decide your own. The rank of the answers is very important. Now42 just take a look at this write-up every month (you must be really disappointed with such lethargic exercise in the present quick-world) and see whether any change is required somewhere (You may revise the first draft in first month as many times as suits you – not as many times as you change the channels but as many times as you watch TV). Did you find the task taxing? Not that you did not have beautiful moments in life, but to recall them and rank43 them is rather burdensome. Now without swinging mood, you have to do the same about following five questions: 1. Write down worst moments of your life. 2. Write down the most malevolent people in your personal life. 3. Write down the top-most things that you would never care for in your entire life. 4. Write down aspects of your ordinary life you hate most (please do not write down anything that you are scared of mentioning even in the mind. I believe courts have enough cases of domestic violence worldwide.) 5. Write down tough (for others) things that you have liked to do to the world44. Over a long period of time, when you review the words in the answers to these questions, there would be still some sentences and words that have not been edited. These unchanging words and thoughts show your mental conditioning. The other words show your temporal mood. Again if you don’t think these questions don’t suit your personality, ask someone who knows you well to draft them for you.
Look how I avoided reference to the word death for those who don’t read footnotes. Come on guy, please don’t try it for the first time in life. I know it appeared to you like a challenging line. 42 This is a boss’s word. Though it is total out of context here, it puts sufficient pressure on the reader not having done something immediately. 43 Please make sure that your answers are complete sentences and answers to each question are properly ranked. The judgment should be as per current perception and not the past perception. 44 Complying worldly norms for unknown writers for the kind of seriousness to be given to what they say, most of you, I can safely say, have not done anything of above. Some of you might even be thinking that I should be grateful to them that they have read the stuff till this point without closing the file.
Absurd world of artificially conditioned mind
If you choose to write just one line in answer of each of the questions above, you may have very stable results. You also may think that you have not discovered anything new. I purposely chose questions that would have most stable answers! But this may give a wrong impression of your own mind to you. Now let’s try something real. (You are free not to take this exercise45.) Let’s take another exercise to know real condition of mind. Here are a few questions whose answers would seriously alter very frequently and reveal your mental conditioning in long-term. 1. Depict your entirety in one word46. 2. Write down top-most good and bad things in your life. 3. List the changes that are necessary in your life. 4. What would you do if your soul/self is exchanged with a person/thing that you despise? 5. List the things that you would (and would not) like to happen to you (ever at any cost?) 6. Describe the attributes of your persona in the order their importance and conspicuousness. 7. How do you rate yourself on meeting personal/civil expectations on behavioral, family, society, spirituality, and humanity fronts? Here you got to be liberal (in terms of quantum of text) in writing if you desire a just outcome. Now take/recollect feedback or cues from others’ on this. You can also reflect upon your own feedback47. You are likely to find the gap of a world between what you think and what most others think. This is because conditioned thinking, of everyone, is based on unfounded concepts. The conditional thinking can be compared to the unreal numbers in mathematics – they look the same way as real numbers, they are operated the same way, they have some useful applications – but they yield very absurd results and their world is flummoxing!
Artificial conditioning: Impacting state and fate of humanity 48
Most people think that the life is competitive and the world too is competitive. Many people think that the world is a treacherous place and most ‘other’ people are foul. People blindly
I just wanted to make it sound that I am making a big concession. You also must have started thinking that I have started interviewing you deeply. Don’t have that creepy feeling as I am not reading this alongside you! Also you has been already defined as a self before and you can write from a third party self perspective. Here I concede that it is rather difficult to keep track of which you is you and which one is the self referred at the beginning and which the third party one if you are going to write for it. 46 Don’t cheat -(common noun please) 47 I purposely inserted this line here to make you aware that there is difference between people’s opinion of you and your opinion of it. 48 This is the only subjective part of this article, inserted here for completeness, can be substituted by altogether different text, examples, opinions, etc. 49 The mouth is a great organ. It is used to eat food. Drink water. Taste things. But there is one more blissful (Hindi: aloukik Sukhdayi) faculty of mouth- Tondsukh (a Marathi word, literally meaning the pleasure the mouth derives. Hindi: Tundsukh or mukhsukh. This is the divine faculty of calling names to the other people and other things (other than one’s own) in the world for sufficiently long period of time till the mouth is relieved. This paragraph is all about it.
believe that life is all about making money50. Curiously, they are very clear on how much money they would like to earn and not so much clear on how they would like to spend it (after all money is a just measurement tool for material ambitions). For many, life is clear task to make maximum money (and report the performance to God posthumously). An individual’s thoughts (this time you must be irked that I have come to an individual from the people) about any subject matter appear to be fundamentally so vacuous that one (who is this ‘one’ now?) can safely conclude that they have not given sufficient time for thinking on it. And at collective level, there is no proper adjective in the dictionary to depict the pandemonium! The garbs of nationalism, political ideology, social class, economic class, biological race, religious identity, professional commitment, self-concocted philosophies, etc, etc are so thick that one can hardly reach one’s own real mind. Artificial conditioning was there ever since humanity started civilizing and but it could never assume the lethal form it has done today. Our economic systems all over the world (read along with their implications on lives among other things) could be the most glaring example of conditioned thinking gone haywire. We all (you must appreciate that I am not sparing myself, just in case you are developing a sense of antagonism for me) are slaves of conditioned thinking. Over a period of time humanity has developed complex social systems and has lost touch with the natural way of thinking. The magnitude of madness in human thinking and hence behavior is so humongous that one can seriously question the claim of humanity to superior most intelligence or some intelligence at all (till ‘or’ the sentence was reading fine…taken). The direction in which humanity is taking itself and dragging the planet along it gives an impression that most people (especially the vibrant middle-class, governments, politicians, bureaucracy, economists, corporates, professionals, religious leaders, community leaders, legal community, media, scientists, artists, students, etc in that order…) are debilitated (or brainwashed?) and they just don’t know how to think (and sometimes whether to think) for bringing about general wellbeing to the world even if they have good degree of inclination and resources5152. To substantiate what I mean by this serious allegation (which no one will take seriously), I would like you to ponder upon one question upon each of them1. What would our posterities down 500 years would say about this generation (they would have detailed evidence to deduce stuff) for the kind of legacy of society and resources is passed to them? Compare the same with your opinion of generations 500 years before. Note that even if you are going to have a rosy picture of the world 500 years down the line; that generation is positively going to have a negative opinion of ‘this generation.’ 2. How successful have been the governments in achieving the objective of national wellbeing? What is the impact of nationalism promoted by governments on humanity? 3. How effectively the politicians and bureaucrats are representing and implementing the agenda of the citizen who elect them or whom they serve?
I have no objection if they think so for a reason! If you are indignated by the multifold inclusion of yours in above list, you must appreciate that customarily I have given student concession and excluded farmers, labors, children and women. 52 This is not criticism of the rotten boys but of the upright ones in the system, the former being outside the scope of this writing.
4. How just is the distribution of ownership of wealth among individuals, corporates and nations? Is there any level playing field? What is the degree of misery caused for billions by the economic systems in the world? Can the planet practically fulfill and sustain the economic aspiration of each individual? Why the aspirations have been taken to this level? 5. How correct is the objective of “maximization of stakeholder value” under proper constitutional framework for the corporates? Has not the concentration of wealth with few people diverted the attention of society from fulfilling the basic needs of maximum number of people to obliging whims of the rich? 6. Do the employees not virtually spend their whole life –till retirement – in pseudo-slavery of employers irrespective of how they would have liked to spend their life? Have they not failed in envisioning projects that would provide goods and services to all economic classes maintaining the observance of dictum of value maximization, as these two are not exactly contradictory? 7. Have the religions and communities not reduced to meaningless profiling tools, sources of meaningless pride and comparison? Where is the religious guidance for selfrealization, self-actualization and cosmic spiritual harmony? 8. The legal community is a mad attempt to define and word everything. The law assuming larger shape than conscientiousness. Is it not true by every passing day, we have to sign more and more number of contracts for very ordinary things in life and life is reducing to a drudgery of compliance? 9. Intelligencia and media were synonyms at some point of time; now they appear to be antonyms. The media are full of chick-brained and highly opinionated people. If someone is shown only the ‘media version’ of the world, he or she would never dare wish take birth on this planet. The media, largely, is working in opposite direction of basic media tenets such as promotion of social reforms, promotion of good values, demotion of the filthy elements in polity, society, fact-finding, research, etc. 10. Are not scientists focused on ‘commercial science’ or ‘pride science’ or ‘inquisition science’ than ‘welfare science’? It appears that something that is not all that required is being discovered first and most serious problems are lagging behind 53 . Even if we assume that scientists would unravel every secret of nature one day, would they be able to administer the same without causing some irremediable imbalance? The present fashion of thinking has posed an insurmountable problem to the long-term good of our posterities, our planet, our own lives, and we all as individuals. There is no ownership of this thinking hence it is not clear whom to address. There is no basis of this thinking hence it is even more difficult to decide where to attack. It is very abstract; hence, it is just impossible to find a manner to deal with it. If people make effort to think naturally, it is likely that many of these problems would get solved.
Imagine a country having estimated the quantum of water of on the south pole of the moon when in the same country a central database on villages and towns with their water requirement (quality, quantity, shortage and reliability/pattern of supply), on the projects required and the costs (let it not be feasible to do all that but at least magnitude of problem can be understood and planning can be done).
Foreword to Natural Thinking
Like the digestive system is made to eat and assimilate natural nourishments, human brain and mind are made to process natural thoughts in a natural framework. In the way eating unnatural food would have detrimental impact on health, processing too many unnatural thoughts would have damaging effect on holistic wellbeing of an individual’s mind. Since we started recognizing 54 things from our childhood, we have been at the inlet of an invisible mind conditioning machine. In the process, we have just ceased to think naturally. Thinking naturally is what the nature expects from us.
Step 1: Managing mood, language and terminus
For natural thinking make sure that you are your normal self and not in any mood55. Mood colors the knowledge cabinet with its hue. Hence, it becomes difficult to find the rightful shade of thought. We are in good mood for around 80%56 of time, though subconsciously, most of the time and 5% of time, we are in bad mood. Only the balance 15% time is right for original and useful thinking. The second condition for natural thinking is clarity of context. Human languages are like explosives – one word said is, without exception, one million sentences implied. All these are processed in the subconscious mind57 at very high speed and scrapped. But occasionally one of them may take a spike up and surface in the conscious mind58. The point is not that you have to be careful in selecting words while communicating with the others (they will take most ordinary meaning even if you use very different words). The point is that you have to select choicest words while ‘talking to your own mind’59. The third aspect of natural thinking is to address the essential aspects of the idea and not to leave important ones aside. If mind is not conditioned, most important aspects would strike the mind first naturally. Another important aspect of thinking is that it should come to a conclusion, at least for time being.
Marathi: jan Sir, not now- while reading this article. You can very well be mooded here. Be normal self when you decide think naturally on something. 56 Hindi: Hawwa, Marathi: Thaap. This is called statistician’s confidence as distinguished from statistical confidence. Want to challenge it? Since all three words “goodness”, mood, and time are undefined, one can safely thokofy (throw) such statements. Most people are excellent statisticians as they know how many people in this world are good or bad, how many are intelligent and how many dumb, etc. This includes me for having made this statement. 57 Technically this is not consistent with what I wrote under title mechanism of mind. But somehow I am not able to make achieve that feat and don’t want to go through the ordeal of making everything consistent. 58 There are more such spikes at the time of group discussion in campus recruitments than in the projecttask-allocation-meetings later in the same company. 59 Hindi: Atmchintan
Step 2: Aspect exploration
Well, I will take the a question “Do you find that, in your personal life, there is heavy shortage of time, especially to do the things that you want to do?“ for illustration of aspect exploration. One should explore the important aspect of the matter. I have cited a few examples of each aspect of the question. Note that we are exploring a question (Do you have time-shortage?) and not a thought (I have time shortage.) though many aspects would overlap for the two. 1. Is it a valid question? a. Is it a worthwhile question for good contemplation? b. Is the pinch of shortage serious enough to think on it? c. Is it a logical, rational and normal grudge on shortage? 2. Whether question under consideration is correct one? a. If you prospect 1000 customers to convert only 10 of them, then you should drop the thought of thinking on shortage of time and consider the relevant question. b. It is that you want the world to adjust to your timings? 3. What do you want to do with extra time? a. What are the activities you are missing because of time shortage? 4. How much extra time you need? a. Daily b. Monthly c. Annually d. Do you want to do the acts in current portfolio bit slowly and without stress? e. Is there guarantee that you have not asked for even additional time if the existing shortage is met? 5. What is your philosophy? a. Life is short and time shortage would always prevail. b. The day is short; it should have been 36 hours or more. c. Do you think that ideally the Fed should feed you freely and all your time should be at your disposal? d. Everything is fine, there is just one culprit e. It is there, and it is fact of life. f. It is manageable, etc, etc 6. What would it cost to find time in exercise of extreme options a. What would happen to social status? How much it matters? b. It is as per social norms? c. Am I under peer pressure and doing things, which emanated this shortage? d. How would it affect your standard of life? Can you take it? 7. Current allocation of time a. Can the realignment of current allocations solve the problem? 8. How serious compromise it is? a. It must be tackled or I can live with it. 9. What are the main reasons a. Do I trace it fundamentally to due to some other behavior? Changing jobs for better salary, etc.
10. What can be done to solve it a. Skills b. Delegation c. Cross- allocation d. Standardization e. Habits 11. Does it come to affect your value system a. What values are finding conflict? b. Do you avoid people? c. Have you stopped enjoying thing at ease60. 12. What to do for time being? a. Do what you would have done had you thought not to give a thought to this before some time, 13. Etc, etc You need not take into account the same things I have taken. Your thinking and context could be entirely different61. The questions are the aspects. After you think down62 all the aspects
Step 3: Select a thought for illustration
The first thing to learn natural thinking is to understand what is a natural thing and what is a conception of human mind. Just answer in yes or no the following questions: 1. Do you find that, in your personal life, there is heavy shortage of time, especially to do the things that you want to do? 2. Do you find that, in your personal life, there is shortage of resources to fulfill most of your desires and aspirations that are reasonable? 3. Do you find that your emotional requirements are not taken largely (please don’t emotional right away; I am not there alongside you to listen the story)? 4. Do you think that you have plentiful thoughts about things that you cannot even dare think of revealing to others? 5. Do you think that most of your relationships in personal and professional life are shallow? 6. Do you think that the way of life you lead now would certainly not have been the same had there been an option? 7. Do you think that the values that you carry at the core of your heart have no value in this world and you would be made into a fool do you start practicing them. 8. Do you have an overall indelible negative judgment on your personal life or the world as such? Well, this was not to make you analyze yourself or intimidate you (or set your mood negative) – I was just looking for one serious aspect to illustrate the mechanism63 of natural thinking. The
Hindi: Shouk se Since I am mechanical engineer, I have applied the work study concepts from operational research. You might have an artistic way of approaching the subject. 62 Thank god, not write down this time.
only thing in which I exceeded my brief was taking extreme liberty in bringing up at least one topic on which you might not have thought before. In case you happen to have “settled” all these questions (where you don’t have to freshly think), please take a new question and better write that in the comments to this article64. Make sure that the thought is a statement and not a question. It is quite safe place. Use your mind liberally to think. There is a lot of fuel as well. The worst kind of Indian software hacker cannot peep in there. Do not terrorize your mind of the thought of thinking. A lot many people practice what can be called thinking without thinking and for them the universal set of truths consists of maximum beliefs and opinions. Thinking is not about answering the question (or defeating your own philosophy for the sake of debate), but it is all about generating actionable plan to better the life. Thinking should lead to a very useful input to the decision-making processes of life and peace of mind.
Step 4: Understanding what is natural
The general idea of nature is very limited. Certain people do not feel presence of nature unless they breathe soothing65 21% oxygen zephyr standing on lush green lavish grass in front of an cacophonic but ear-mollifying 66 waterfall, between two mountains surfeited with trees, regathering as a stream flowing into a lake minimum 1000 km away from a town with a population of 0.1 million. They won’t even call such painting nature- it has to be the real thing! Well, here, the definition of nature is rather loose. Nature here does not mean an antonym of science. Science is systematic study of nature. It also does not mean an antonym of artificiality. A mobile phone67 is very much a natural object! As every artificial object has,68 a certain degree of natural content and natural treatment, one can also assign a degree of naturalness to the objects around oneself. Following is the list of objects (in my opinion with certain things in mind that will take a lot of time to type) ranging from highly natural (10) to highly non-natural (0): 1. Universe -11 2. Your body and certain routine – 10 3. Your family, friends, relations and kids - 9 4. Television at your home – 8 5. Tap water you drink – 7 6. Your clothes - 6 7. Your city or urban living area - 5
I am not going to write any “23 great habits”, “39 success door”, “2.5 ways to manage 85% time” stuff. Do not worry, you won’t have to remember anything (neither you will get anything). The expectation is that you have stand this toxicity till end. 64 I have uploaded around four articles on scribd, but alas! None has been able to generate a comment. I have clear “knowledge” of the value of my writings to the readers (people who ended up here for no fault of theirs looking for something else.”) 65 Hindi: manmohak, meaning mind-blowing but at a gentler speed. 66 Hindi: karnmadhur, meaning like honey for ear 67 Though mobile phone is natural, having to carry it everywhere and always is not quite natural. 68 This comma is irremissibly suggestion by MS Word. Microsoft seriously needs to augment its grammar team. It feels that 10-20 programmers are suggesting syntax than language from behind the head, two of them working on either hand side, one drawing long green lines and the other short red lines. No one can hold hands of Microsoft in making irritating and indispensible products. Now all these 20-22 chaps are shouting about grammar of this comment.
8. Your nationality – 4 9. Your professionalism - 3 10. Your civilized mind and its contents – 2 11. Your currency note, religion, race – 1 12. Your legal asset ownership – 0 13. Interest on your fixed deposit(ROI) – -1 14. Innovations in US financial markets - -5000 (logarithmic) The ranking is relative to other items in the list and the item is not in the sense of an article but a concept. You would have loved to command me to explain these arbitrary rankings and I would not leave you rankling. You can see a pattern in the rankings.
Step 5: Natural thinking
You might have noticed that by inserting the prior four steps, I have made it very difficult to begin with natural thinking. If somehow you are able reach here, the remaining job is just kissing the trophy. But, don’t try to think naturally now; do it after you finish this reading, if you want. If you have a thought – “I have time shortage.” – Let’s see how we can naturally think on it. Rule 1: For natural thinking, the stage set up must be natural. You and your time are natural. Some of your routine activities are natural. All the physical (including massless objects like electromagnetic waves and human beings like your neighbor) objects in your life are real, hence natural. Only the notions, some of them, attached with these objects could be conditional. So, if you conclude that work and travel are main reasons for this feeling or your corporate slavery is the main culprit, understand that they are not natural. It is essential requirement for natural thinking to assume that the nature is reference for everything. Nature appears to have no time constraints. It has eternally existed and would exist. Nature itself does not have a time problem as it is disposed with infinite time. However, your life is finite and unspecified. To call it short or long is absolutely your discretion. Similarly your day is at your discretion, the profession and life standard are your choice, hence don’t blame time and think on the real perpetrator, naturally again. (Suppose you are deaf or physically weak, that is a natural problem. Apply natural thinking on it.) Step 2: It is also required to that normal course of nature is correct. You must accept all natural changes happily. There would be hardly any tribe today that is out of touch with the rest of the civilization. The lifestyle of these people can be treated as most natural and needs to be imitated in many ways. Basic human life is always within the bounds of – birth –growth – foodsleep – excretion – reproduction – death perimeter. Only the manner of doing these things has changed. Hence, if things get complicated they should be brought down to this basic level. If you say that there is time shortage on day-to-day basis, the length of day cannot be played with. There is way the nature expects you to spend your day and if I speak on its behalf, there is a good degree of leisure in that. National Geographic shows a lion running after a deer at tumultuous speed, which affirms your belief that life is hectic without exception. However, if they choose to show you the entire schedule of the same lioness (lions are even more boring, they don’t hunt normally, cooking is wife’s department even for them), hunting once in 3-4 days, you
would get bored to watch a still strip of this lion sleeping under a tree for long hours. You would direly wait for at least a leaf to fall on the lion so that there is some “action” in the scene to break the boredom. In similar fashion, world shows us the most conspicuous part of other’s life. No history book would mention that (something like) Gautam Buddha has gone for stroll for 30 minutes on the 2543th day of his life in the morning. It is just not important. Step 3: Own up your choices: If we choose to keep (competing) with all the conspicuous historical or contemporary things, life is bound to go hectic. We buy a car to save time in transport and spend a lot of time in selecting a car, testing it, knowing its specifications, convincing spouse, locating dealer, arranging documents, arranging finance, arranging parking, paying finance, servicing the car, refueling it, repairing the damages, filling air, getting pollution control, hiring and managing a driver, learning directions, following traffic rules, getting driving license, disposing it later, calculating mileage, etc, etc. Walking is natural option. If you have chosen an economic life-standard (expenses per month or per annum) that is above your natural earning capacity, you are bound to feel stress. That is because to sustain such life standard you have to enter into a profession that is quite demanding and above that risky. It would require that you live less of your own life and more of the profession’s life. There is no one holding you at gunpoint (Hindi: kanpatti pe ghoda) to live at certain locality in a city in a certain type of villa, earn a certain amount, run a certain car, etc, etc. It is all what you thought and you have done for yourself. While designing our life, its aspirations, its action plan and timelines, we take time for granted! It is essential part of natural thinking to think that all the choices are your own. There is nothing forced in all ordinary circumstances (And the gravity for an extraordinary performance in life leads to extraordinary circumstances arise in life). Step 4: In the course of natural thinking, you have to cast away the artificial garbs mentioned earlier. You have n number of fictitious circles around you – I am from this caste, I am national of this country, I belong to this religion, I am upper middle class, I am educated, I am this professional, I am this race, I am poor, etc, etc. Nothing of this is natural. In an attempt to simplify human life, our great forefathers (and some current fathers) have unravellably intricated things. If you want to see a true picture of the thing, you must think as if you are born now and nothing is told to you. You have time problem because under so many garbs you have to perform so many duties. A clerk wastes life in stamping papers, a teller wastes life in counting notes, a police wastes life in patrolling in a car, a priest wastes life in invoking a god, a professor wastes life in drawing impractical curves in economics, a lawyer wastes life telling meaning of an act, a journalist wastes life in telling things to 99% disinterested people, a politician wastes life in upholding a impractically nobly spirited constitution; and then they complain that there is no time! If you are deaf, you are deaf! What is the big deal in that? There are so many faculties that all humans desire. Do they all have them all? Think on how you can overcome disadvantages of being deaf. Step 5 Dilute your conviction system. Human ego is very strong and it is a demanding to tell the ego that it was wrong even in the mind. We hardly listen. We are hardly appreciative. We are determined not to change our mind because that is compromise with ego. We believe whatever we believe very firmly. That is why our thinking is unchanging. Assume that you believe that (you must be wondering what is this way of assuming!) African people are underdeveloped. Please qualify the statement. Looking at the flora and fauna of Africa, one must agree that they are daily tourists. The land and things there must be cheap (as no rich man goes there to live)
and their lifeblood (Hindi: Khoon pasine ki Kamai) must not be going into buying a diminutive flat in a remote suburb. They must not be having income tension (in absence of income), they must be having sound sleep (as they have to work hard), their immunity system must be stronger, they breathe fresher oxygen, etc, etc. Above that, we don’t know how much they are after material wealth and what are their parameters of mental peace! Though there could be thousand factors that justify calling them undeveloped, there are thousand other factors that we just don’t know to conclude anything like that. Hence, to call most Africans undeveloped and to pity on them in the mind is not very correct. In India, the general perception of North-East India is that it is backward, but if you visit that part of the country with open eyes, you must have to concede that the rest of the India would take minimum 50 years to catch up with the North-East on social front if rigorous initiatives are taken. When we make a statement, we must simultaneously realize that is should be qualified in many ways. When we say that time is short, we must realize that we still get time to do most of the things that we are required to do. Step 6 Human communication is incomplete, even to oneself. There are limitations of the words, languages to express the exact thought. There is limitation of time. There is no need to analyze a thought like a professional assignment or contract, hence we accept the loosely worded thought as it is. Now you are likely to have a more studied, if not different, view of time shortage. Here the example of time shortage is only for illustration. Natural thinking is not to change your thoughts but to make more studied.
Step 6: Applying natural thinking
Natural thinking does not mean aboriginal, tribal or primordial thinking69. It is very much relevant for this age. It is very much relevant for the likes of you and me to cope up with the artificial stress of life. It is not essentially change of perspective or behaving in an out of fashioned manner. Now70, one may say this is all rubbish. One more (it is good set of opponents ) may say that is theory and not practical. The words theory and practical have no difference, if thought upon naturally. Natural thinking promises you peace of mind, good relationships, general comfort with surrounding and reassurance of being a good individual unless you have deliberately chosen to be otherwise. I am not prescribing natural thinking through this article. My intention is just to introduce you to the topic. Natural thinking is a new science like accountancy and it would not be smooth unless sufficient practice is there. Also, this article does not cover sufficient aspects of it. So to practice it based on information in this article would be dangerous. The outcomes of natural thinking initially would be very weird.
I have written so many times I am sure, by this time, you have, at least once, scrolled to the end of the document to see how much more is left to be read. If not, then the question is not valid for you.
You also must have noted that this is a one-side story. It talks only about your mind and not others’. It is avoided because it is too complicated. Relationships and natural thinking would require separate write-up. Just don’t start thinking naturally about any random thing. Forget natural thinking and do what you were doing before you read this71.
Have you wondered at the text in the header? Well, if you have ignored it till now, you are supposed to ignore what is lightly and take seriously what is gravely as you usually do.
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