One of the essential step in most of the meditation techniques is to become a witness of your mind content. That is the ability to witness the thoughts, feelings as well as to become a witness to the bodily movements. Which means no thought pass by your mind without being noticed by you. Every act of yours should be done consciously and not with an unconscious robotic pattern. E.g. Gautam buddha used to walk consciously and used to take each step with full consciousness.
I agree its easy to say this but difficult to practice in real life. I am trying for last 15 years to implement this in my daily practice. But as i practice more awareness in my daily life, slowly the awareness is seeping in every act of life. Basically, it needs practice and patience. We are trying to break the unconscious pattern of hundreds of life times. So it will take time and we have to give our 100 percent to it.Witnessing is the essence of meditation and every meditator must put effort in developing his
Witnessing is the essence of meditation and every meditator must put effort in developing his witnessing center. slowly as your progress in meditation then you can use listening as meditation or eating food mindfully or talking meditatively and so on. slowly try to bring meditation in daily life.
I have already shared the detailed post on how to watch the thoughts in meditation.
15 Tips to witness thoughts or thinking:
1. Always remember, that no thought belongs to you. At the soul level, there is utter silence or stillness. So no thought belongs to the soul. So no need to take pride or feel guilty about your thoughts. In short, don’t get identify with any thought and just notice (or acknowledge) them.
2. Try to stay in present moment. Whenever your attention goes to the past or to the future then just bring your attention back to the present moment (here now). When I practice being in the present moment then I do this – I become an observer to the bodily sensations. I listen to the sounds around me. I watch my thoughts and notice wherever your attention goes. Basically, I became a passive watcher of everything which attracts my attention.
3. Don’t judge your thoughts as good, bad or ugly. Just watch them as if they don’t belong to you. Since they actually don’t belong to you. So there is no need to stop the thinking process. Your job is just to watch the thoughts. Don’t interfere in the thinking process in any way. Be a distant watcher and never try to stop your mind. Lastly, don’t take your thoughts, ideas and life too much seriously. Be a happy going relaxed person and it will help in the meditation a lot. Seriousness is not needed in the meditation. You need sincerity in meditation.
4. Don’t involve yourself in the mind dialog. Mind love to involve you in the conversation. So just stay aloof and be a detach witness to your thinking. Watch the thoughts passively. Remember, Mind is very clever in fooling us and getting us involved in the thinking process. It will take time to notice all the tricks which our mind plays with us and fool us again and again to get involved in the train of thoughts.
5. The more you witness, more the witnessing center becomes stronger. Thus, make it a constant habit to witness all the thoughts. practice makes a men perfect. So try to meditate whenever you get any opportunity. Also, check this post – 10 occasions when you miss practicing meditation in a day.
6. It is natural to get identify with the thoughts of pleasure or happiness, So be watchful about this fact. Make sure that no thought pass by without being noticed by you.
7. If you forgot to witness and got involve in the mental conversation then don’t feel guilty. Because to feel guilty also, there will be a thought process and here again mind is fooling you indirectly. Instead just be watchful of the mind process. In short, the moment you realize that you are not witnessing your thoughts then start witnessing the thoughts immediately without feeling guilty.
8. Avoid watching television, cinema or reading newspaper. They just add clutter to the mind. Do your worldly work or duties but don’t add any non-sense to the mind which is not needed.
9. Avoid unnecessary conversations or gossips. Save your energy so that you can use this energy to go deep in meditation.
10. Thoughts are always related. one thought leads to another. Watch the whole cycle of thoughts process and that will make you more mature about the working of mind.
11. Between two thoughts there is a silence. It is more important to watch the silence than to watch the thoughts. bring your attention to the silence or gap between two thoughts more and more. feel the silence within you also, as your meditation practice deepens.
12. Never give up meditation. keep on trying. remember, for so many life times you are living unconscious life so it will take time to grow in witnessing. so have patience. be regular in meditation and have patience. Keep on walking on the path and never gives up.
13. Initially when you start watching thoughts then you will feel that your mind is full of thoughts and you might feel that meditation is actually increasing the number of thoughts in your mind. that is not true. In reality these thoughts are always there in the mind but now you are becoming aware of them. so don’t worry and keep on watching the thoughts. as your witnessing will become stronger, in the same proportion your thoughts will become less and less.
14. Decide a place in your house or a room preferably, where you can practice meditation every day. So that the place gets charged with your meditative energy and it will be easier for you to go deeper in meditation.
15. Keep your house neat and in order. dDon’t clutter your house with unnecessary things. Because the silence and order of your surrounding will reflect in your inner state also.