Passive Concentration Versus Active Concentration

As you know, concentration is very important in everyone’s life, and it is one of the main reasons for success or failure in all areas of life.

Most people find it difficult to focus their mind. However, there are times when they do concentrate, but this is a passive concentration. Let me explain.

When you read a fascinating book, do you sometimes forget everything else, and get completely immersed in the book?

When you watch a good movie or a good show, do you sometimes become oblivious to everything else, even to hunger, your chores, or to the people around you?

When you are engaged in an activity that you like very much, do you forget about the time, and it seems to pass very fast?

At such times you can ignore thoughts, noises, people, pain and problems. It is as if the activity you are engaged it, draws your whole attention, without any effort on your part. This is passive concentration.

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The Power of Attention – Focusing the Consciousness

In his book, Raja Yoga, Yogi Ramacharaka (William Walker Atkinson) says about the power of attention:

Power of Attention“The word Attention is derived from two Latin words “ad tendere,” meaning “to stretch toward,” which is really what attention is.

The “I” wills that the mind be focused on some particular object or thing, and the mind obeys and “stretches toward” that object or thing, focusing its entire energy upon it, observing every detail, dissecting, analyzing, consciously and sub-consciously, drawing to itself every possible bit of information regarding it, both from within and from without.

We cannot lay too much stress upon the acquirement of this great faculty, or rather, the development of it, for it is necessary for the intelligent study of Raja Yoga.”

“Attention has been defined as a focusing of consciousness, or, if one prefers the form of expression, as “detention in consciousness.”

“In the first case, we may liken it to the action of the sun-glass through which the sun’s rays are concentrated upon an object, the result being that the heat is gathered together at a small given point, the intensity of the same being raised many degrees until the heat is sufficient to burn a piece of wood, or evaporate water. If the rays were not focused, the same rays and heat would have been scattered over a large surface, and the effect and power lessened.”

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What is Intuition?

By Remez Sasson What is intuition? Here are a few definitions of what is intuition: Knowledge gained not through the reasoning process or the five senses. Subconscious quick thought processes that produce knowledge or solutions. An ability to draw conclusions and understanding from previously acquired experiences and information. It is instinctive knowledge or belief. It … Continue Reading…

Shutting Off the Mind

Do you find lack of concentration and distracting thoughts overwhelming, when you try to concentrate, meditate or follow any personal growth or spiritual growth technique?

Someone has recently asked me the following question:

“I was just wondering if it was common for people in a sense to get “worse” before they get better.  I’ve been doing so much reading and have started meditating and doing affirmations. I feel that I have been having a harder time shutting my mind off and almost feel a bit overwhelmed. Is this a normal part of the process? And when can I expect things to improve?”

When starting with meditation, affirmations or other inner growth methods, people sometimes seem to experience more acutely their lack of control over their mind. They feel more strongly the lack of concentration and are unable shut the mind off. This is a common occurrence, and one should be patient and strong enough not to give up.

Why does this happen?

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