Imagine a house where we all have trash in our pockets, dirt in our wallets, leftovers in our lunch boxes, but we refuse to clean it. Forget cleaning, we refuse to accept that we have some trash with us that needs throwing away. We do this for a day, two days, a week.. For how long would you be able to hide it? Any rotting trash will make itself known no matter how hard you try to hide it, and the more you refuse to dispose of it, the more stench you and your family will have to live with. This isn’t so complicated to understand, isn’t it? That’s because we already have a solution for what to do with the leftovers in our lunch boxes, we already know where the trash goes, we already have a system to throw away the dirt.
What about the mental trash we gather on a daily basis? What about the absolute garbage that we read in the form of printed and media, what about the television that we watch in the name of entertainment that seeds poisonous thoughts into you even without your knowing? What about the conversations we have with friends, who in all honesty don’t know any more than we do about life, and hence their opinions with all due respect, is just as half baked as our own? What about the addictions we are prone to, what about the behaviour patterns we aren’t able to correct, what about the dream of being completely at present, not being ruled by a past, be it glorious or cruel?
The things for which we don’t have a solution for, is always considered taboo in any society. Don’t know how to handle it? Don’t have an established system to handle a particular problem? Best, label it taboo, and force the world to pretend that the problem doesn’t exist. I wish that was going to help. I wish that would be a solution. By no far means does it not only be of any help, but also it only further aggravates the existing problems. If I may go so far to speak, deviations of the mind from the truth can be detrimental to our lives, in ways we don’t even realise. I am no authority on the subject of truth, but I do know something about how discussing our “problems” with well meaning friends, is sometimes the most disastrous thing we can do to ourselves, simply because this friend is after all, has probably seen almost the same amount of, or a little bit more of life than you have. And so it remains.. the nagging question of what to do with all the incidents of our lives that has bogged us down, that we never share with anyone out of the fear of being judged, misunderstood, disrespected, or becoming an outcast.
Well, I’m human, and I had the same questions. Only that maybe, if you’re accustomed to carrying a 100kg weight on your back at all times, you never know what a burden it is, you just think that’s the way of life. Which was the case with me. I had tonnes of mental trash that needed to be thrown out, a rather heavy baggage of a glorious past that I was too enamoured to keep aside, and amidst the stench of an unhygienic mind coupled with tiny fragments of fragrances of the achievements of the past, the glory of living in the present moment.. Lay mysteriously hidden.
And that is precisely when Bhava Spandana (BSP) happened to me.
The best part of it all, was that I was in blissful ignorance of all that I’ve written above. I had no idea of the power that the past had over me, I hadn’t felt for a moment that I wasn’t really living in the present. I would have definitely agreed that refining my thought patterns had come with a lot of effort, but I wouldn’t say that there was an information overload on my system, and I definitely wouldn’t agree if somebody told me that I needed a detox at the level of the mind!
BSP happened, and the three and a half days zoomed past. Everyone around me was very eager to know what BSP was like. So much so, that I met a friend at the Isha Yoga Center right after the program ended, and she looked at me, with an inquisitive expression. The question was written all over her face. So.. Was it worth it? How was it? What did it do to you? She didn’t have to say them aloud. I replied before she worded anything, that I had no idea what had happened in me and to me during BSP, and I was okay to take time and see what had really happened. She smiled and shrugged it off.
It took me three entire months to realise what BSP had done to me.
Three months, to see that some of my close friends started to question what had happened to me, and how my daily reactions to a number of things were vastly different, to say the least. “This is not you”, they’d say, with surprise in their tone. And not pleasantly. We don’t like our close ones to change, do we? It was then I realised that BSP had done something tremendous with my past, it had distanced it.. And pulled me back into the present, where I really belonged.