Q. Revered Master, I am a student of Psychology. Yesterday in our class, a discussion was held on psycho-immunity. I wish to know your viewpoints on this subject. Kindly advise how can the level of psycho-immunity be increased?
A. Immunity means the resistance power or the ability to resist. Till date, discussions were held on bio-immunity, meaning how to protect the body and keep it free from diseases to remain healthy. And, for this, people did yoga and pranayam and took different types of medicines. But now, the psychologists are making vigorous propagation of the concept of psycho-immunity as well. For, in the current wave of modernity and materialistic civilisation, the cumulative effect of the impact of technological advancements on an individual is so much that he is turning sick day by day at a rapid pace. Today, everyone's mind is full of negativities and lustful fantasies. The germs of anger, greed, aggrandisement for wealth, ego, feeling of self-importance, and jealousy have severely attacked and infected human beings. Like an epidemic they have spread far and wide and are extending their influence on the minds of people with great speed.
The impact of such mental ailments is seen even on the physical dimension of an individual. Doctors have also concluded that the origin of various physical disorders lies in the mental realm of an individual. Dr. Duke, in his book, “Influence of the mind upon the body,” has argued that– Many diseases like irritation of the bile (pitta), hair fall, blood related diseases, skin problems like eczema and white patches, occur due to wrong thinking or a negative thought process. Studying all such issues, Nobel Prize winning famous scientist, Walter Hess concluded that when negative thinking and pessimistic views result in adverse effects on the health, there is no reason to believe why then the opposite of this is not true. Optimistic thinking and cheerful disposition would certainly lead to positive effects on health.
Therefore, the psychologists attach much importance to the well-being of the mind of an individual. And, for this reason, they are endeavouring today to improve the psycho-immunity of man through counselling, auto-suggestion, hypnosis, etc. They feed him with good and positive thoughts through these techniques. But the effect produced from all these procedures remains confined to the surface just like cosmetic treatments. With all these techniques, they are able to infuse instant inspiration in an individual and motivate him to do anything. But, the effect is temporary and short-lived. After some time, the person returns to his original mental state– the negative one! Freud, Adler, Jung– all three of them are known as giants in psychology. They kept before humankind several such curative therapies. But the failure of their therapies is clearly evident from the fact that all three of them themselves suffered throughout their lives from various psychological disorders.
On observing the failure of these therapies, the scientists perfected another technique to control the mind. They discovered that within the brain of an individual, there are some special types of nerves that are associated with the world of emotions and feelings– like fear, anger, love, sorrow, happiness, pleasure, eroticism, etc. The neurologist from Yale University, Dr. Jose invented such electro-radio equipments, with which the nerves controlling the emotions could be impacted through radio rays, without the procedures of surgery. These equipments facilitated a medical practitioner to execute control over the emotions of a human being with the application of radio rays. But, this mode of treatment could give rise to many undesirable effects. For achieving selfish motives and for fulfilling the objectives of national expansionism, the technique could be misused for torturing or ill-treating the people from the enemy camp. Considering all such grave possibilities, the research on this aspect was discontinued.
Scientists are once again standing on the crossroads of guesswork. They are unable to understand, how to control the subtle feelings of the subtle mind. Sir John Woodroffe provided a solution to their dilemma. In his book “World as Power Reality,” he writes, “Vedanta is the ultimate expression of the advanced Psychology. The revelations of Vedanta are superior to the greatest of the great philosophical and psychological propositions.”
Paul Brunton has also written in equivocal terms in his book, “Vision of the Self,”– “India has in its lore such profound knowledge about spirituality, whose depth and expanse cannot be compared with anything or anywhere in the world. The revelations of the sages of this country have the potentiality to give a suitable direction to the science of psychology as well.”
Dr. Cannon mentioned to the extent that “In the field of psychology and the workings of the mind, India can provide us much more knowledge than what western psychologists like Freud, Adler were able to give. Reason being the sages of India transcended not only the physical domain but also moved beyond the realms of the mind and intellect and did profound “research” at the level beyond. The domain of their investigation was the soul. Through meditation, they dived deep within and realised that there exists the domain of the soul, which is beyond the realms of the body and the mind and is much more powerful than the two. Only after knowing (experiencing) it, a human being can execute control over his mind.”
Dr. Cannon elucidated it perfectly. The great sages of India perfected the art of controlling the mind. They alone can therefore reveal how psycho-immunity can be augmented. Counselling, hypnosis, auto-suggestion, brain washing, electrical signals etc. – all such external treatments can never prove to be a sure-shot way to execute control over the mind. The negativities ingrained in the mind cannot be removed from the level of the mind. The sages of India aver that the mind is not diseased, but the mind itself is the disease! A human being is infected by his mind. Therefore, it is necessary for the human being to come out of the control of his mind. He needs to liberate himself from the clutches of the mind; rather, he needs to transcend the barriers of the mind. On transcending the mind, one enters the domain of the soul, which is the real existence, the eternal form of man. On transcending the portals of the mind, when one enters the zone of the soul, he realises that the mind is darkness while the soul radiates brilliantly in the splendour of light. The mind is blind, but the soul is not. The mind lacks stability, but the soul is perfectly stable. The mind is full of worries, tensions, and is the abode of agitations, but the soul is worriless, peaceful and is the abode of bliss.
When one gets established in the soul, he becomes the witness of his mind. And, on being the witness, he can beat the negativities of the mind. How? Let's understand it through an example. Suppose you are in a situation which tends to make you angry. Now, if you are at the level of the mind, you will become angry. In such a situation, according to psychologists like Freud, there is only one way to find the escape route from anger. Either you 'reduce to ashes' the one/object on which you got angry or you suppress your anger for the time being and explode it on someone/something else afterwards. But, if you stand above the level of the mind, and remain established in the soul, you become the witness of your mind. At that instant, on seeing the mind getting angry, you will laugh just like you laugh on seeing someone else getting mad with anger. In that state, you neither exhibit your anger, nor do you suppress it, because you are not angry at all! Your mind became angry and you laughed at its plight. In this way, on getting established in the soul, you remain untouched from all sorts of negativities inflicting your mind and intellect. They are unable to exert any influence on you and thus, in the end, they get destroyed.
This can be understood through another example. In a drama or play, if someone is enacting the role of Mahatma Gandhi, he knows well that in the real sense he is not Mahatma Gandhi. It is so because even while doing the role of Gandhi, he is the witness to the work he is doing as Mahatma Gandhi. He is not entangled into it. Likewise, the soul is the witness. It is not associated or entangled with the mind. That's why the Upanishads state, 'Saakshi chetaa, kevalo, nirgunashcha'– The Consciousness seated within the body is the witness. It is observing the drama that is being played within us.
Now the question is how to transcend the mind? How to get established in the soul and function as the witness of the mind? How, after becoming the witness, can one secure victory over the ailments of the mind? There is just one solution to all these questions– Atma Gyan or Brahm Gyan, i.e. the knowledge of the Soul or Atman. Only on taking refuge of a Perfect Master, one can be blessed with Brahm Gyan and experience the soul-force in his inner world in the form of Light. But experiencing the Soul or Atman alone is not enough. Through the regular practice of meditation, one needs to perfect the art of remaining established in the Soul. We need to traverse the journey from the “mind” to the “Soul.” For this constant practice and an attitude of renunciation is necessary. Lord Krishna said to Arjuna while delivering the message of the Bhagavad-Gita:
mano durnigraham chalam,
Abhyaasena tu kaunteya vairaagyena cha grihyate.
O mighty warrior! Indeed, the mind is fickle and with great difficulty it can be brought under control. But, O son of Kunti! With constant practice and with the attitude of renunciation, it can be brought under control.
When we are engaged in meditation and try to focus on the soul-force (consciousness), another activity takes place in our inner world which makes our thoughts pure and noble. The enlightened sages of India had revealed in the scriptures thousands of years ago that photons exist in the human body. But, the modern science was able to confirm this secret only a few years back. For the first time, Dr. J. C. Trust revealed this secret in the Dale Carnegie Hall, in the presence of several scientists from all across the world, that the human body contains photons, which emit electro-magnetic particles. Through these particles, one is able to establish their presence. The count of such photons exceeds twenty lakhs in the human body. Nature, personality traits, desires, creative power– all these are the play of these particles. The more the nobility and the positive qualities in an individual, the more divine and bright are his photons; whereas, the photons of criminals and diseased persons are dim and filled with darkness. An individual cannot achieve transformation in his nature so far as the polluted photons are present within his body. Therefore, the sages of India perfected a system by which such polluted photons can achieve emancipation from the dark state. Brahm Gyan based meditation is that extraordinary procedure with which we can transform the dark and polluted photons, which encourage the growth of negative tendencies, into the ones which are divine, brilliant, and conducive to positive tendencies that will lead to the growth of peace within.
This was the procedure/technique that transformed the ferocious criminal like Angulimaal (in the times of Lord Buddha) into a peaceful and non-violent human being. Therefore, Brahm Gyan based meditation is the essential procedure, the only divine asset through which psycho-immunity can be augmented. It transforms the mind of an individual into a beautiful and healthy entity, the one that is given to positive tendencies. There is no other alternative.