Understanding the power of Attention

What is Attention?
It is the underlying power that causes experiencing. You are looking at something but your attention is involved in listening to someone, in this example even if seeing is happening but it’s not been registered in mind as an experience because of lack of attention. So effectively you will only listen because you are absent from looking. So attention is synonyms to myself, the self that we are generally aware of. You are present where your attention is.

How does it affect our life?
Generally our life is nothing but collection of experiences, until we know the experiencer, our true self. Any experience touched by your attention, is added to the pool of your experiences. So effectively your life is created by the movements of attention and it would be very significant to have some understanding of the power of attention.

So, is it possible to control my attention?
Attention is triggered by our interests. Our attention goes to the objects/experiences that we are interested in. And by purifying your interests or desires you can effectively control your attention. Desires can be purified by exposing them under the light of your introspection. When a desire is exposed, the non-essential part of it falls away and only essential desire remains. So if you want to control attention, go deep into your desires.

True power of attention
The power of attention is not limited to experiencing the objective reality. By objective reality I mean anything that can be experienced. The true power of attention lies in moving towards the source of attention, that is it’s real power. When the attention moves out from the source, experiences happen. But when attention comes to the source of attention, then recognition happens, recognition of truth, recognition of our true self.

De-constructing Definitions

Definitions play very significant role in what we experience in our life. So it will be very useful to go little deeper in the structure and functioning of definitions.

Why we need definitions in the first place?
In a civilized world where most of us find ourself in, words are the only medium of communication. So with mutual agreement we have standardized meanings of words with the hope that when such a word is said any listener will get to the same meaning. So basically definitions exist so that you can have conversation with others. And definitions are serving their purpose up to some extent, at the level of objective reality. A shoe has same meaning for everyone who knows whats a shoe. But whether the shoe is comfortable or not is relative and is different for everyone. So the meaning of ‘a comfortable shoe’ would be different for everyone.

Are definitions harmful in anyway?
Yes definitions are harmful for seekers of truth of life or anyone who want to enjoy life fully. For rest of the people, definitions do no harm. But for those who want to see everything as it really is, definitions work as filters or colored glasses. You are not able to see anything as it really is because the definition of the thing creates an invisible colored glass in front of your eyes.

Definitions and Clarity?
A definition is a word with a corresponding meaning stored in your mind. In life everything is alive and constantly changing. For example if I have ever seen a rose flower then the experience of that flower has been stored in my mind as the meaning of a rose flower. And now when I encounter a rose flower again then that stored meaning doesn’t let me meet this rose flower. I start comparing this rose flower with the meaning that I have for it in my mind and I completely miss the opportunity to meet the totally fresh, totally new rose flower. This rose flower which has never born before and will never come to life again. And because of the definition of it I miss the uniqueness and life that is present in this rose flower. And slowly we start doing the same thing with each experience that life present to us every moment. And we go away from the reality of life, from the aliveness of life, from the beauty of life.

And those who have little sensitivity and urge for reality of life, they now start seeking for truth of life. But that seeking is also influenced by the definitions that seeker has in his mind. Seekers loose interest in objective definitions but then they collect spiritual definitions and concepts. And after doing lot of efforts on the way of seeking, even when the seeker experiences something real, the definition comes in the way here also. He starts comparing the experience with the definition he has in his mind.

Not-knowing is the way out
If possible simply discard all the definitions that are stored in the mind and stay in the state of complete not-knowing. In such state whatever you touch is experienced fully, whatever you see is seen through. There is nothing which can hide from your eyes. You can see everything as it is, inside yourself and outside yourself too.