[Advaita-l] Sattvic food (was Re: How to control the mind (without meditation)?)

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Fri Feb 27 20:31:47 CST 2009

--- On Fri, 2/27/09, Suresh <mayavaadi at yahoo.com> wrote:

> From: Suresh <mayavaadi at yahoo.com>
> Subject: [Advaita-l] How to control the mind (without meditation)?
> To: advaita-l at lists.advaita-vedanta.org
> Date: Friday, February 27, 2009, 9:51 AM
> Dear Friends,
> Mind control seems important. But is it possible to do this
> without meditation? Because, first off, meditation isn't
> easy. Second, we need to be in control at all times, not
> just during meditation. I normally try to view everything as
> an illusion during the waking state, that's all I can
> do. Meditating on Brahman is out of question, since Brahman
> cannot be imagined or thought of in any form. 
> What else can one do to control our thoughts, and not be
> swept away by this current? It gets so hard sometimes, I am
> not exaggerating at all. All kinds of thoughts come to
> one's mind, and it's especially hard when
> they're emotions like hatred, violence etc. It's
> like you're a plaything in their hands. 
> Is there some method in advaita (not necessarily
> meditation, it could be anything) that can help us conquer
> all this? I am not exactly the devotional type either, so
> praying and bhakti are totally alien to me.

Your question is similar to Arjuna's lament to Krishna in the Gita 6.34: "The mind is restless, like the wind. I do not see any way to restrain it."

Krishna replies that it is possible by regular practice and withdrawal from sense-pleasures.

If one is truly keen on subduing the mind, I would recommend reading Ramana Maharshi's "Who am I?", especially the answers to questions 8-13. The answer to #12 contains a gem of an advice, because literally everyone can practice it (compare Gita 17.8) irrespective of their physical or mental makeup:


  "Of all the restrictive rules, that relating to the
  taking of sattvic food in moderate quantities is the best; by
  observing this rule, the sattvic quality of mind will increase,
  and that will be helpful to Self-enquiry."

Some websites to learn about Sattvic foods:




Ramana Bhagavan once said that "kanji" or "congee" (Rice porridge that is lightly salted and spiced, may contain vegetables http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Congee ) is one of the very best Sattvic foods there is. Another small tip, may be useful: a diet with a good amount of rice and yoghurt (curd) or buttermilk (instead of rather than along with milk) is excellent.

> Warmly,
> Suresh



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