Purifying the heart (2/7): The mind cannot be freed of bindings by mere physical renunciation


“Thus every human mind is a gigantic storehouse of accumulated and fast-changing impressions. How can one gain an adequate idea of these impressions left by innumerable actions—and particularly those born of anger, lust and greed—during the lengthy course of the evolution of man’s consciousness through the progressive stages of the mineral, vegetable and animal kingdoms of life?

“The obvious remedies for this situation are to use no remedies. For example, if one engages in a secluded life of mere physical renunciation, one is more likely to drive underground than eliminate the dirt of impressions from one’s mind. Under a false sense of external security born of the secluded life, the mind is apt to become weakened and so stop struggling. Then, instead of achieving freedom from the bindings of impressions, the mind is likely to succumb eventually to its impressions and thus develop greater bindings.

“By becoming physically free of the bindings created by the impressions in your mind, you have not rooted them out of your mind.

Although your body may be temporarily freed, as it is in the sound-sleep state, yet your mind remains bound by the impressions. Even when the body itself is dropped you do not become free, for your mind remains bound by the impressions which the mind has created.

-Listen Humanity, p41

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