The mind can have both negative and positive aspects to it, since consciousness exists as a spectrum from dualistic thinking to holistic understanding of the universal mind. Dualistic mind is ever isolated through its discursive thinking, which divides reality in distinct categories. In some areas of study these divisions are necessary for understanding, yet the whole remains indivisible as the universal mind is always connected to the Supreme Soul.
Dualistic mind is closed and narrow in its outlook. It only desires pleasure and it avoids pain. Consequently, it constantly analyses situations in terms of personal gain instead of empathy for others. The lack of empathy creates isolation through an inability to relate to others except for self-interest.
When someone offers us pleasure we naturally feel affection for them but that affection can turn to frustration if anyone thwarts our desires. The question arises where does the frustration comes from and if we seriously analyze it we will realize the frustration comes out our own expectations not being met. In life, people or events will at times disappoint us. The unrefined attitude is to blame them, get angry or harbour ill-feeling to that person. A skilled approach involves recognition that people can disappoint us, yet we can freely choose our response.
Our thoughts whether positive or negative create choices in our lives. Logan Andrews in our novel, Nexus, has to make important decisions, yet his thoughts are working against him. He faces an inner struggle to overcome destructive thought patterns. Only if he succeeds, can he make the right choices. The choices manifest as actions with clear consequences. Sometimes even good intentions can cause problems, for example, when Logan decides out of love to assist his dying mother with her fight against terminal cancer. His decision leads to unexpected consequences, which significantly impact his life.
Due to unexpected consequences arising from even benign actions, we need to practice compassion for its own value, not for any fruits it might bear. Otherwise, our compassion would arise from desire for reward or recognition. Our compassion instead needs to emanate from our empathy for another’s suffering and the idea of empathetic connection is a central theme in Nexus.
The dualistic mind puts limits because it views itself in individual isolation rather than as part of the overall universe. Even if you see yourself as only a drop in the ocean, yet the realization that in essence you the drop are also a full part of the ocean gives a majesty where the individual become part of the universal awareness. Complete truth can only be apprehended when limits are removed, for the Supreme is limitless. Consequently, a limited mind cannot approach the Ultimate.
Dualistic mind is constantly filled with greed. This shows up as impatience, wants and expectations, which if left unfulfilled become the smoldering embers of frustrations. The dualistic mind is satisfied when desires are fulfilled no matter how it affects others. Still, thoughts influenced by greed and disregard for others will eventually lead to pain as a natural consequence of division created by the mind concerned only with “I” and “my.”
The universal mind, in contrast, rests in inner contentment and satisfaction. It is an open vessel for the limitless and so it doesn’t need to impose any limits. The mind is centered upon the present with equipoise, instead of regret of the past and worry of the future. Since the mind is not closed in on its own desires, it is open to the natural course of life. It does not resist change due to ability to adapt to new circumstances as part of its openness and acceptance of realities as they are, not as one would like them to be.
Greed of dualistic mind is impatient, withdrawn into personal expectations and material desires, while satisfaction of universal mind is patient and it imposes no preconditions with a connection to Universal Life. Doubts and fears fill our mind in dualistic thoughts but in universal thinking we let go of closed thoughts, which allows us to reclaim our connection to the Universal.
The world is a reflection of our mental state. So if we want to experience greater joy in life, then we need to assess our thoughts. How are my thoughts limited? What can I change in my attitudes or thinking to reconnect to the Supreme?
Striving is unnecessary when we already have innate wisdom. Remain still and know that fear of inaction in reality emerges from a limited mindset. Pure, spontaneous action, called wu-wei-wu in Taoism, Sahaj in Sikhism and Shunya, “the void” in Buddhism, emerges when our actions are not forced but emerge from a calm, centered place within. It requires becoming part of life’s flow. So instead of a dam, we are like a windmill. Instead of a motorboat, we put up sails and let the winds of life navigate our sailboat to our right destination. Rather than swimming upstream, we learn to the poise of going with the stream of life.
First realize your connectedness to others, to your environment over thoughts of separation. This can also reconcile relationships and mend hearts. The difference is between friction, resistance and clash versus flow, stability and harmony. Once you are connected to the Universal Source, your intuition will also become clear and right directions will be easily found. Of course, this does not mean challenges in life end but our reactions to them are from a place of peace not conflict created by separation. Be spontaneous, natural and effortless. Nexus highlights the journey from dualistic mind to the universal mind in a narrative format, so that the reader can enjoy the story while learning insights as the story progresses.