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The path to enlightenment, step 1

July 4, 2006

Yesterday I decided to try and stop the inner dialog for as long as possible. It seems as if the dialog keeps one thinking about things unrelated to the current moment, comparing oneself with others, waiting for things to happen the way you expect them to and so on. But all of this is actually meaningless.

Thinking about random stuff is something that can go on doing forever, in circles, and has not logical finish. Whenever you sink in into thinking about something that is not a current problem you really need to solve, you disconnect from reality, usually without any benefit. It may be pleasant to imagine situations that you’d like to be in, but in the end, this kind of day-dreaming doesn’t bring you further, it lowers your ability to concentrate on the moment once you really need to and for this reason it should better be avoided.

But waiting for things to happen, creating your own version of the possible future and living through it in your head, is probably the worst manifestation of the inner dialog. What you think will happen is almost never what really happens, so why waste time and energy playing around with these illusions? Maybe they’re too much fun not to, but they lead you to shift your focus away from reality and give nothing in return. So the best way to deal with them is not to give in and come back to reality as soon as you can.

Now let’s see if stopping the inner dialog really helps, and what other pros/cons it has.

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From → Human nature

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