Institute of Scientific Astrology

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Taming the mind

Our forefathers' desire to somehow uplift the humanity had no limit. They were trying to use all possible methods. As we discussed earlier they knew pretty well that human mind cannot be dictated because then it will only revolt. it had to be reasoned out in some form and be made to get convinced that what we are asking it to do is for it's own interest. But however much we cajole it, it knows it is going to be at it’s cost of wandering over bodily pleasures and therefore it applies an opportunity benefit analysis before saying yes.

Our elders have compared mind control exercise to the Bull taming exercise where you have to very slowly tame it,first by becoming it’s friend and step by step taking control over it and any attempt to quickly or suddenly gain control over it will boomerang.

Concept of Vrathas

Therefore, one of the forms they figured out was Vrathas which included fasting; disciplined living; observing certain rituals which acts as an aidememiore for meditation.The idea was that at least on those periods or days the people were willing and trying to focus their thoughts on one thing- mostly a god-(of their choice ).The common man’s mind was willing look at it since the limitation was for a selected period only and also it gives a different variety of experience to the mind on those days than on the normal days. Therefore this was possible to be implemented-by being it’s friend, which we have seen as the first step of taming a bull.

Having noticed that the mind was willing to try , our elders had to figure out  logical occasions to convince the mind that there is a valid reason.Therefore they identified some days of the week (the somavara Vratha,Guruvar vratha);some days of the paksha(Ekadasi vratha,Sashti vratha);some days of the stars(karthika vratha,sravana vratha);some months of the year(Badrapada,Karthiga) etc., The choice was left to the option of the individuals to choose and care was taken not to make it mandatory. But it was reasoned out that they can please the relevant cosmic powers-which is a truth of course-and in the process they will be benefited materially and spiritually.The human mind accepted the logic and picked up what suited to it and started even to pride about it.

The practice of Vrathas came in to operation in full swing. The taming the mind exercise slowly became controlling of the mind .This practice goes on even to date which means the acceptance of this practice has been total.

In fact every religion developed it’s own set of days or periods and were able to make the people to adhere to it without any major resistance.

Benefits of Vrathas

These vrathas in addition to aiding mind for uplifting it also helped them physically because the periodical fasting ie., avoiding regular foods and living on fruits (in tamil called pazha akaram ;later twisted to palakaram) helped flushing out the accumulated toxins and made them healthy.

Over a period of time the people realized it’s benefits tangibly and therefore it has become a very common practice by all people including the younger generation.

The vedic conclusion  that fasting helps both the mind and body is now endorsed by current day science and is being recommended very strongly.