By Debbie Ogunjobi
MY mind has been programmed to be suspicious, protective, competitive, argumentative and acquisitive!! It seems to feed on the quest for more, and thrives on fear.
You set a goal, achieve it and set a bigger one, and the next and the next and the next. I do take the time to be thankful to God for all of his generosity but I never pause in any goal destination to savour and enjoy before the next one takes me over. My story is the same as almost every person alive.
Thatâ€™s the cause of high blood pressure and all other stress related illnesses, thatâ€™s why we are hungry in the middle of abundance and lonely in the middle of a crowd!
And yes, thatâ€™s why we are collectively forgetful, I took a poll of people in their twenties and they were no better than me and my absent minded friends! The realisation started a quest in me for meaning, for more and this time not more things but more stillness, more peace.
The birthing of a new consciousness I believe was a miracle of sorts and it began one discovery after another. Early last year, I was wondering around an airport looking for a book for the kids when I saw a yellow book on the â€œPower of the subconscious mindâ€ by Dr Charles Murphy, an author I had hitherto never heard of and it was almost like the bursting of a dam! It focussed on the mind, the different parts of it and understanding its workings! I ended up buying several copies of that book later as a few of my friends liked it, some a bit more than I did.
Itâ€™s the kind of book that grabs you in the guts and speaks truth that resonates on many levels. The information contained therein is science based though it helped me that it was written by a Christian who consulted experts around the world as well as bring in a lot of biblical facts.
The book changed the course of my journey and I came to a realisation of this fundamental fact; the seat of the Divine is right inside of me, the stillness, wisdom; power is not in any thing outside of me.
Heaven is right within me, if l let my mind be still long enough; I can enjoy heaven right here on earth. I knew I had the facts but hadnâ€™t a clue how to begin to make it my new reality. I believe the best view of any situation is from a superior height so I started to look for the shoulders of giants to get more understanding and knowledge.
God was certainly generous as I was nudged in the right direction. A friend of mine gave me an IPod touch two years ago as a birthday present and I discovered the world of podcasts and audio books.
I have downloaded countless podcasts and have started collecting audio books as I am discovering books read out loud are a lot more fascinating than turning paper pages.
Donâ€™t get me wrong I still read but I would rather listen if I had a choice. The podcasts are particularly wonderful as you can download a new one everyday if you subscribe to the religion/spirituality genre on iTunes. It feels like the author/speaker is an intimate friend, a guide, sharing opinions and ideas.
I just lie there listening, sometimes agreeing other times not but all the while enjoying a voyage through someone elseâ€™s mind. These days I have become almost impossible to reach by voice calls as I most times put phones on silent in the car so I can concentrate and enjoy listening to an audio book.
It seems all of the writers and speakers that I am discovering all are paying attention to the mind, its purposes and the stillness of the present moment.
Even more ironic is the fact that books I read a long time ago are almost like new when I listen to them in audio forms.
These days I donâ€™t skim over pages rushing to get into any climatic page, I root myself in whatever is being said in the present moment and just let it flow over me.
I am learning to stay deeply rooted in the stillness, so I can listen to differing opinions and arguments without being ruffled.
When the mind is still and quiet, there is no hurry or need for rebuttals; its just acceptance of other people, their opinions and an acceptance of all there is in the present moment.
I go for an hour long walk/jog with my closest friend most mornings and she had been upset on a particular day and wondered why I seemed to have acquired what she called a new found coolness of late. I explained with an analogy.
I am like somebody who is going to a party but has a full meal before leaving the house; nothing on the menu can upset me because Iâ€™m already full.
Let me explain, after I discovered the treasure of the stillness within, I began to find a way to exist in a manner where anxiety was the exception and not the norm.
I found out that I couldnâ€™t