Six Roots for Thoughts
Six Roots for Thoughts:
Only when an individual examines himself and sincerely works to remove the impurities in his personality can he have good physical and mental health and lead a successful life. Such examination is called ‘introspection’ or ‘self analysis’. Every night before going to bed it is a good practice to review and analyze the day’s events and ponder the lessons to be learnt from the experiences. These together form ‘introspection’. If there was a mistake made, make a strong auto-suggestion not to repeat it; if an action was done well, that should be recollected to imprint it strongly in the mind, to be repeated when possible. In order to streamline the mind and thoughts there must be a method to differentiate thoughts for scrutiny or critical assessment. By understating the reasons for the arising of different thoughts, we can arrive at a method of approving or rejecting them as deemed appropriate. The forces giving rise to thoughts can be divided into six categories. A thought may arise:
1. From the force of Need
2. From the force of habit
3. From the force of environmental conditions
4. From the force of imposition by others
5. From the force of heredity and
6. From the force of divinity.
The Force of Need:
Appetite is felt due to the real need for food and one’s thought naturally turns to eating. This kind of though is due to the force need. Therefore, there is nothing to be avoided in this type of thought; it is to be accepted as valid and necessary for happiness and health and brought into action. Similar to this, other thoughts that are naturally arising in order to keep the body andmind healthy and energetic are all of justifiable nature and must be brought into suitable action.
The Force of Habit:
A great many of our thoughts are simply automatic; there may or may not be any need or reasoning behind them. This kind of thought is by the force of habit. For example, a modern habit of many people of all ages is spending time and money on reading material that is obviously of no real value or utility for life. Usually these publications thrive on sensationalism and cinema to attract the public and create a habituated readership. If there is a delay in getting the new release, we become irritated and unable to concentrate on other duties that are of real significance and importance for life. This is thought arising from the force of habit. Another example: One day you may have eaten a late breakfast: even then, from force of habit you think of eating something at 1:00 PM, whether hungry or not. This is also a thought solely due to the force of habit.
The Force of Environmental Influence:
It happens often that we think of doing something due to the influences of our environment. For example, the habit of smoking is often picked up through environmental influences like advertising or opportunities that arise with friends who are in the habit of smoking. Smoking is a terrible and wasteful habit that is always begun with a free inauguration by others – because no one wants to waste their own money to begin it, nor does anyone have any natural desire for it! The thought of smoking is originated by the force of environmental influence.
The Force of Others’ Imposition:
When we are not alert and aware we often uncritically yield to the thoughts and wishes of others. Relinquishing our own awareness and intellect, we passively fall in line with another’s idea. The root of this thought is the force of others’ imposition. For example, while walking through the market you see a vendor selling mangoes. Casually you enquire the price, just out of curiosity. The price seems very reasonable since it is cheaper than yesterday’s price. So you buy half a dozen mangoes. While returning home, awareness comes suddenly: there is nobody at home, all have gone out, there is already one dozen mangoes in the fridge and you do not even have much desire to eat mangoes at all. Then why did you buy them? Here, we see clearly that the thought of purchase was not due to the force of need; nor is habit the root of the thought. We cannot consider it to the due to the force of environmental conditions either, since there are plenty of cart venders all along the road and we see this business going on every day.
The Force of Heredity:
The unfulfilled desires of previous generations pass on to the descendents through heredity, to be fulfilled at a future date. This gives rise to thoughts due to the influences of heredity. Someone may develop a desire to construct a school in his village. Why should that thought develop in him? It is possible that his father or grandfather had the desire to construct a school but could not carry it out, so that unfulfilled desire passes on to the next generation as inherited character, to be fulfilled by the progeny. As well as their physical characteristics, the psychic characters of parents are passed on to children through the genetic centers of each parent. Depending on the qualities of parents and forefathers, children inherit the tendency to virtue as well as negative or detrimental tendencies. So one must be cautious not to allow one’s hereditary negative characteristics to affect his life (while not forgetting to be grateful that all one’s best qualities aremost likely to have come from his parents!). With such awareness one can analyze and come to understand how some thoughts arise under the influence of heredity.
The Force of Divinity:
The force of divinity is that which inspires an individual to think in a creative and positive way that will be beneficial to many people. Such thoughts are often of a novel nature and difficult to implement, as they are considered unusual and reformist and may be ahead of the times. However, it is usually the case that there had been many who had a similar desire but were unable to implement it due to the existing cultural setup and structure of their society. An exemplary and dynamic personality is regularly inspired by such carry them into action for the greater common good. All thoughts arising from the source of divinity will be exalted and noble aim.