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Sunday, May 22, 2011

Where Are Your Trains Going?

(photo art by www.dougwebbart.com ) 
Thoughts are like trains passing through your mind. You can either let the train go by, silently watching it flow through, or you can jump on the train of thought allowing it to bring you to a destination. Some trains go to happy places: warm memories, future dreams, gratitude, present surroundings. Others go to places of misery: regret, worry, resentment, complaints. Be aware of what train you jump on. When you pay attention to thoughts they grow stronger and come more often. Begin to be aware of how your thoughts affect your moods. Ask yourself, where is this train going? Then you can either stay on it or jump off! 


JUMPING TRAINS- The optimal gaol is not to allow ourselves to indulge in trains of thought that lead to misery and suffering. But since this takes time to master, most of us will occasionally find ourselves on a self destructing train of thought. To maintain peace of mind we must learn how to jump from negative trains to happy trains. There are many ways to do this. One of the easiest is to bring your awareness back to the present moment. Pay attention to your surroundings, concentrate on feeling your body sensations, sights, sounds, and smells. When you are fully present your mind will not be thinking about past trauma, today's complaints, or tomorrow's worries. You will be in the NOW, fully aware and free to experience life outside of your head, until you jump onto another more pleasant train of thought. Practice being aware of what train you are riding, and jumping trains as necessary. The more you practice, the easier it will be, until one day it will be second nature. The less attention you pay to the negative trains of thought, the less often they will come to mind, and the quicker they will pass through, eventually not coming much at all. Be gentile with yourself during this training phase. Any amount of effort you take will pay off more than you realize.
Many Blessings-
Laura Barrette Shannon

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