I am the Monkey-mind

It seems to me that I am conscious and rational, and that I make decisions. The illusion is so perfect, it is hard to see how anyone ever sees through it. You want to believe, and can rationalise almost any evidence against, after the fact.

So, I became aware of the emotional being underneath this conscious self, and still thought I could make the decisions. I just have to cajole it a bit. I am, after all, the adult. Rather than telling it what to do, so that it goes in a huff, I would persuade it, show it why, and it would come round.

It’s like riding an elephant, except I don’t know if I am the Mahout, fully in control most of the time except when the elephant gets Really Annoyed and stops responding to the reins, or just riding along. Like a child in Mummy’s car, with a toy steering-wheel, imagining I was driving the car.

Or the elephant is God. Sometimes it deigns to explain things to me, and sometimes it just expects me to work things out, and does nothing about it when I fail, because I will work it out eventually. Forty years later I begin to work it out, and it welcomes me; because it could not give me any clues, just will me to succeed. It was doing its best to look after me.

I am still planning and scheming. It will do what I want, I know it will, there must be some magic reins or steering wheel that actually work, I have the brains and the intelligence and the silver tongue and the command of language and the persuasiveness and the sane ideas of what it ought to want so that I can get it to DO MY WILLLLL

Possibly, it is in control and gets me to think something through occasionally. That could be my purpose. Here am I “thinking”, all the time, much of it just rehashed stuff from before and irrelevant stuff about all those bits of the world I know about but will never see or affect, or imagining future heavens or hells which have not the slightest chance of coming to be or connection to reality, and then it wants some Slow Thinking done, and it gets me to do it. Or that is all subconscious too, and the words in my mind are just the echoes of it.

I am the monkey-mind! I am as much use as a pet monkey?

Which part, conscious or subconscious, is the Writer? I like to hope it is both of us.

5 thoughts on “I am the Monkey-mind

  1. It’s so easy and seductive to try to think everything through, as if by doing that we can establish control or keep the ship from sinking. And maybe by rehashing the past we can beat ourselves up enough that we won’t do/say/be whatever it was that we remember as so terrible. The problem is… it doesn’t work. We need to accept our past and keep it in the rear view mirror as we move on, wiser, more vulnerable, and understanding that as humans we will make mistakes.

    And if all else fails, pour a cup of tea and enjoy a few minutes with the Stones: https://youtu.be/h4CrCTndkKc

    Liked by 1 person

      • I’m not sure if it’s a habit, a curse, or a normal part of being human. I certainly share it, too. I don’t think of it as a habit and try to take a Zen approach: acknowledge it’s happening, recognize that my worrisome thoughts do not have a basis in fact, take a deep breath, and try to move on to thinking or doing other things. Sometimes it even works!

        Liked by 1 person

    • Welcome. I fished you out of the spam filter, and some people find these awards a bit spammy- but I like the questions people ask. Yours were,

      If you could travel anywhere (no financial or time constraints), where would it be?
      Who would you bring with you?
      If you wrote any book, what would it be about?
      What would you title it?
      In your ultimate sandwich, what would you put in/on it?

      I may answer some time. Tree hugging gay vegan feminist bookworms are always welcome here. I typed erdlingmitfernweh into Google Translate, and it gave: While the other way to find him and that deterioration. So I tried erdling mit fernweh and got Earthquake with Wanderlust, which is much better as a handle.

      My book would be about me, which is the only thing I really know about. I have thought of various titles, including “How to fail at spiritual growth”.

      Liked by 1 person

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