When I spoke of the mental pillar before, I touched on the need to put as much "programming" into our mental computer "wet ware" as we can. In order to even speak about our experiences, we need to make a concentrated effort to expand our knowledge and our vocabulary. We need to experience new things, and understand them.
It is easy to settle into the same old rut, assuming that nothing changes and nothing is new. This kind of thinking once almost got me killed. Many years ago, where I lived in rural Ontario, there was a railroad that passed along beside the highway between our tiny hamlet and the nearest town big enough to shop in, which also had the highschool for the whole area.
Before I finished school and moved away to pursue my own destiny, the railroad fell into disuse and was used only once or twice a year. I became used to never seeing a train or hearing its lonesome whistle announcing it's presence and it's intention to cross the road. Returning home for a visit, I was driving to that town to do some shopping, on automatic you could say, I had passed that way so many times before. My mind did not register either the whistle or the presence of the train passing across the highway until it was almost too late. I stopped within inches of the moving train! Nothing in my mind had prepared me for seeing the train....so I did not.
If we do not prepare our minds for the wondrous journey ahead, we will miss many great truths, experiences, and growth itself. Just as a child learns gradually, we must allow our minds to build on each layer of learning we complete. We need to learn to really see, hear, touch and experience the world around us, and that takes time to learn the language to express what we experience and understand the experiences of others who share with us. Trying to push too far or too fast will only lead to discouragement. Learning comes in all shapes and sizes. We learn from books, from TV, movies, radio, computer, other people and from life itself. When we indicate our desire to learn, many more occasions and events will be presented to us. In order to benefit from the lessons that are presented, we must be alert and aware, alive in the present moment, looking carefully at all we experience. You can bet that I learned a lesson from my train experience, and now keep my senses open and my mind alert for the unexpected. It is surprising how much more I am aware of because of that.
An active, healthy mind is also protection against Alzheimer's, Senile Dementia and other mental afflictions. As we must keep our bodies strong and healthy, we need to do the same for our minds.We must never stop learning. Life will bring so many more delights if we are open to the. Meditation helps us to prepare for learning and keeps us both alert and relaxed.