How to make your brain work for you and not against you?
Or, should I ask, how to prevent your brain and his projections ruin your life? Because, for most of us, it doesn’t seem that the brain helps, as it should or as we are taught he does, but tries to ruin our reality and our real lives with made up stories!
Yes, it is always been taught in Eastern religions that “mind is a monkey” and that it cannot settle in one place. So the whole art and science of meditation is dedicated to trying to calm the mind, but not by force because then he will get more wild, as a monkey would. For us people living in the West it seems that meditative state is hard to achieve – there are not so much Masters present, there seems to be no time, and we seem to be genetically modified over the centuries that we cannot embrace that art so willingly.
There is also a useful statement that is taught by many spiritual teachers that says “do not identify with your mind” because it is not you who identifies, it is the ego. The ego is that relationship between yourself and your mind in which you understand your mind very seriously. The cure might be to let your mind work on his own while not taking him seriously but more as a joke teller. Trying to calm the mind by force is one way of taking him seriously, and it might get you mad.
In medieval alchemy, the head is the place for distillation, it is some kind of a vessel, brain also. It is a place where all other chemicals or humors from the body gather and need to be arranged the right way. That kind of method would I propose to people who are not fond of meditation, since that method is closer to us. The brain really is an excellent tool, but you need to use it the right way! And the right way is to observe it solely as a tool. That needs the right knowledge of methodology and a little common sense.
You see people with poor methodology who let fantasy ruin their life. Little girls watch Twilight and cry because they do not have a strong but gentle glimmering vampire vegetarian by their side even if they have a decent human boyfriend. You see guys watch porn and lust for easy women even if they have good girlfriends.
Not that you should draw yourself from your emotions or urges, not that you should castrate yourself and become an eunuch dedicated to scientific work, you just need to give your urges the proper place and to know the right way to treat your emotions. Arrange them with your powerful brain, use your head as a vessel and do not take your feelings or thoughts personally. This might give the right direction to your life!
Some people use their sufferings and past experiences to get something out of them and write stories: fiction or non-fiction, with great insights found inside them. They lived through all that inside their souls and wrote them to us, as a present. Some people write songs, and some do engage into scientific research with great honesty, while some tend to help other people in many ways. It is a full array of things you can do, using your mind and not letting it ruin you.
At the end, as a conclusion, we can sum the whole text in one sentence: You can carry a head full of bad trips, just do not take them seriously – that way you can let them exist but they will not hurt you! Though, a little creativity and method in arranging them could help.