Tuesday, December 28, 2010

A Successful Life – Bad Habits

Just what is a bad habit? Isn’t a bad habit a subjective thing? May-be we could define it as something that does more harm than good to your life. There are lots of psychological explanations for why we develop bad habits. Basically psychology tells us we are trying to fill a void. Something is missing so we fill it with destructive habits. Yoga defines this as greed.

Psychology would have us look at the habit and how it affects our life. Then we would look at how eliminating this habit from our life would make our life better. We should work to replace one bad habit with a good habit. Of course a good psychologist would work to have us get at the base of our unhappiness and why we feel compelled to act out in a way that is destructive. Yoga would approach this task a bit differently. It would ask us to take a vow between you and you. Only you can decide that a habit must be changed. The idea is to achieve a state of happiness and peace of mind. This can only be done by inner refection or gathering the life force. The life force is an undisturbed mind.

To practice a vow from a state of an undisturbed mind is to achieve peace of mind. Peace of mind can only be found when we move beyond the conscious thought and into the realm of the unconscious. It works like this – if you take a vow to not eat candy anymore and then you spend the rest of the time craving and thinking about the candy the mind is disturbed. It is far better to “moderate.” Allow yourself to eat one piece of candy and not the whole bag. Unscatter the mind by approaching all things with moderation and when you cannot fully keep your vow do not get disturbed. Work to reach the subconscious mind. This is the place of pace and serenity. Seek out wise ways to quiet the mind so that the subconscious mind – the mind beyond thought is at peace. Peaceful souls naturally act in peaceful ways because from the subconscious mind all energy negative and positive springs forth.

The practice of yoga is far more than the poses and postures. It is about taking the conscious mind into the subconscious realm and reorganizing it to produce genuine happiness and gentleness. A habit cannot be changed on any level until we recognize that it is peace of mind that insures balance and it is balance that makes all things joyful.

Psychology teaches us to choose between the action that makes us feel good about ourselves and the one that makes us feel bad. Yoga teaches us to simply be at peace with ourselves. Being a t peace erases the need to choose between good and bad because ultimately there is no good or bad – it’s subjective. A quiet mind and a steady being at the heart of the soul brings a life of peace and a life of peace lives freely without the constraints of the so called bad habits.

Doctor Lynn


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