What does your mind eat?

Here’s a challenge: at the end of the day, try and recall everything you ate that day, including that stray chip and biscuit. For most people, this requires some effort. Now here’s an even more difficult challenge: can you recall what your mind ate?

That might seem like a strange question but just like your body, your mind is also absorbing external objects, namely ‘impressions’, throughout the day. Everything you see, hear, smell, taste and touch is recorded in your mind. This is why your mind is constantly spinning with thoughts and even when you close your eyes, the thoughts and images keep coming. No wonder it’s so hard to meditate or have a quiet mind!

The sad thing is that most of what we feed our mind is not done consciously. Whether it’s the radio running in the background, the mindless TV watching or the aimless web-surfing. And let’s not be shy in admitting that mass media, be it the daily news or Facebook, is an expert at churning out material that stimulates negative emotions. Watching even an hour of news, leaves one feeling less good than before thanks to the sensationalism, fear and exaggeration doled out in generous helpings. The thing that happens most in the world is…wait for it…. ‘nothing’. But turn on the daily news and you will soon be convinced that humanity’s final hours are nigh. Then there is the unending clicking through link after link until you feel like you have surfed through half of the world wide web and forget what you were looking for in the first place.

If we want to improve our meditation practice or just simply maintain our peace and joy, it is vital that we start paying more attention to what our minds are consuming. Just like with our stomachs, there is junk food for our mind too and if you put junk in, you’ll get an upset mind as sure as you would get an upset stomach. While we’re very conscious of what we feed our bodies, we may not necessarily be ensuring that our minds eat healthy. So just be mindful of those times when it might be better to change the channel; it might just also change the frequency of your mind.

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  1. Love this! I am very aware of my need for “chewing gum for the brain” sometimes, when I just turn over to re-runs of favourite sitcoms that I don’t have to concentrate on, but can watch and shit off from other things which need more thought, which may be challenging or upsetting x

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