The Role of the Mind

By Jon Bernie

What is the point of talking about the inexpressible? Since it can’t really be defined, explained or understood by the analytical mind, why bother?

The thinking mind, as much trouble as it can be, is also a function of the inexpressible and clearly has an agenda of wanting to know and understand. The sooner we can acknowledge its positive intent, the sooner it becomes our ally on the journey into the unknown. When the mind becomes our ally, it becomes supportive and caring, compassionate and patient.

This is important, because for the so called vast heart to open, the mind has to be basically at peace; from a simple physics point of view, it can’t be using up all the energy in the system. Otherwise, by trying to create meaning the mind actually contracts into a defensive posture, consuming the energy that would otherwise naturally expand into radiant vastness. This is why I often use the metaphor of “energy management” to describe the process of helping the mind to relax and allow what is.

As our ally, the mind becomes much less likely to get in the way, and the mystery is allowed to unfold itself. That may show up as the dropping away of the personal self, a sense of interconnectedness with all things, a vast opening of the heart, a cathartic emotional release, physical healing; the possibilities are limitless. Looking for the “right signs” to reassure us that we are doing well on the spiritual path is basically the thinking mind getting in the way, or the emotional heart wanting reassurance, wanting to feel secure. To simply recognize what is, without attempting to control it in any way, mentally, emotionally or physically, is the true doorway to freedom.