One mistake probably all of us make in our spiritual journey is to try to learn too many things in a single day.
I remember the time when I used to finish a book in a single day and jump on to another immediately.
That seems such a long time ago now.
I no longer do that.
Because now I have realized that I don’t have to read hundreds of pages every day to gain new insights or understanding about my consciousness. Sometimes a single page is enough to make me think about it for the rest of my day.
And, at times, even a single sentence is enough to make me meditate on it for several hours together. That’s how deep the true spiritual teachings always are.
You, too, would have experienced such moments if you read a lot of books on understanding your consciousness. If you haven’t started reading such books yet, you may find my recommended books section a good place to start.
Now, here is what I do whenever I come across a thought that’s new to me : First, I make sure that I have understood the thought clearly. Then, unless I have understood the thought in its entirety, I simply don’t move on to the next one. I let that thought get absorbed within me fully, and I let myself work on it with different angles, and then I reflect upon that with my own experience.
And then, finally, I reach the position at which I can accept it if it matches with my own understanding, or leave it if it doesn’t.
Though every sentence in every spiritual book may not be worth giving so much attention to, but if it’s a good book then surely you should come across such moments, not just once but probably tens or hundreds of times, when you want to close your eyes (this happens almost automatically), and meditate on it for several minutes without moving on to the next sentence in that book.
And when such moments do come, tell yourself to not hurry about anything. Don’t rush to the next words in the book at once.
Stop for a while.
And then give the thought the full attention and the full time that it deserves from you.
This is a good way to deepen your understanding, and form deeper and richer ideas in your mind.
When any thought makes you reflect deeply, you can bet that the time you spend reflecting upon that thought will only help you move closer towards your meditation and spiritual goals.
So, if you are a seeker who tries to consume too much spiritual information in one day, and repeats that every day, then I want you to do one thing now.
For today, try to work only upon a single thought that you think is deep in meaning. If you don’t know of any such thought go back to some of my earlier posts and you will surely find something worth thinking about in them.
And if you find yourself with more than one such thought, then still work only on one thought for today. Leave the other thought for tomorrow.
Make that single thought sort of your thought for today.
And tell me how it works out for you.
Before the day ends, you should have gained some deeper understanding about yourself than you had when you started this day.
And getting enlightened is nothing but to keep gaining a deeper understanding about yourself, day after day after day.
I can tell you this from my eight-plus years of practicing mindfulness and meditation, and from reading enough books to have fully lost count of the numbers, that it’s not about how much text you can read in a day, or how much information you can consume in a day, the most important thing is how much you can actually understand in a day, how much you can actually let sink within you in a day.
Trying to understand your consciousness is an activity that needs you to dive at a deeper level within yourself. And that’s why when you try to learn new things about your consciousness you have to let every spiritual thought get absorbed within you at a deeper level.
And the only way to ensure that is to not bombard yourself with too much learning in a single day, but let it spread out evenly over a span of weeks, months, and even years.
And to make that happen, it’s enough if you start with a few thoughts every day, and, for now, it would be enough if you just start with a thought for today.