Human mind is an amazing blend of myriad patterns of thoughts, memories and knowledge made possible by the intricate circuitry of neurons and synapses (Too many adjectives? Can’t help it 🙂 ). It is a photographic film that captures everything it is exposed to and never forgets a single thing. People call it the sub-conscious mind and it is infinitely capable.
Right from my young age, I have been very good at grasping new things swiftly and learning from them. The role of the sub-conscious mind in that is immense. It automatically connects the dots and relates to the things that I already know. The kind of results that it can produce can be awesome. I was a consistent topper at school but beyond academics there was very little that I was good at. Some how by the twist of fate, I got into quizzing and boy didn’t I love it! What aided me was my ability to observe and recollect a lot of things in minute detail impulsively.
In a quiz contest that I participated with Shankar Ganesh, there was a question which probed for the name of the renowned musician Pandit Ravi Shankar’s daughter who was also a musician. My mind suddenly popped a name ‘Anoushka’ out of nowhere with a huge surge of confidence. I was totally startled because I felt that there was absolutely no way mind could have even guessed an answer for that question. I had read and heard about Pandit Ravi Shankar but had no idea about his family or his children. What made it scarier was that it turned out to be the correct answer. I guess my mind should have picked it up from somewhere without me being aware of it.
I have been blessed to have many such eureka moments throughout my life which have helped me immensely. I have learnt from experience that our mind, conscious and sub-conscious, has most of the knowledge and wisdom that we would need in our life. A lot of times, all we need to do is to look inside and egg our mind to find answers. The time it might take to accomplish it might vary drastically from an instant to a very long time, but the success rate is very high.
Wouldn’t it be smart to condition our mind to focus a bit more on important things in our life? It could help reduce the non-useful things getting into our mind’s chronicles, which is capable of capturing even our negative emotions, experiences and thoughts as much as the positive ones. This would inevitably condition our mind to a lot of avoidable stereotypes and patterns. Whenever we have to respond to a situation, our mind compares it to a previous experience which will most likely influence our response. Instead of responding to a situation on its merit (à la the inimitable Ravi Shastri 🙂 ), we end up reinforcing the conditioning our mind has gone through umpteen times. We need to find ways to stop being a Pavlov’s dog. Letting go of negative emotions and hurt we might have clung to for a long time will definitely help. (Despite all this gyan, how much ever I try, I end up responding the same pathetic way whenever my girl friend talks about most other guys. 😉 😛 (evil grin) )
While this might not be a panacea for all problems, let alone mine, understanding our mind better and being aware of its potential will help us a long way in living a life that we dream of living. Now is the time to stop dreaming and start living! Cheers!
Update: My friend Srikrishnan pointed me to excellent literature on this subject – http://www.eagleman.com/incognito and some excerpts from the book “Incognito – The secret lives of the brain” written by David Eagleman, a renowned neuro-scientist, at http://amiquote.tumblr.com/post/4686955288/david-eagleman-on-the-conscious-mind-what-freud . Warning – mind-blowing insights in store 🙂