We tend to equate a powerful mind with being mentally fit, but this is really a misunderstanding of mental fitness.
We need to “get out of our minds” to see situations more clearly. “Understanding” is not concerned with the mind, per se, but more in line with “awareness.” Someone who is understanding is aware. With awareness we don’t fall victim to the mind’s limiting tendencies that rule us if we lack understanding. Our minds will create doubts, the mind will also create escape thoughts and routes when we are stressed. If we give these less than ideal moments strength or validity we’ll tend to react and escape the stress by avoidance or worse escapism. In most cases we need to develop the ability to push through our doubts. We do this through understanding. However understanding is not always easily gained. Life has many difficult moments (many beautiful ones as well) and the tried and true path to overcoming these moments it through the combination of awareness AND understanding.
The we can combine these two states through knowledge and wisdom this expands our mental states and capacities. To do this we need to operate from a part of us that is different than our thinking mind. That part is presence. What is the difference between “thinking” and “presence?” Thinking is thought intensive while presence is awareness or simple attention in the moment. “Thinking” is when your mind creates thoughts about the situation you are in. “Awareness” is when your attention is focused on the situation simply observing with your senses. You are aware through what you see, hear, feel, smell, taste. Thinking separates us from the immediacy of the situation. Awareness gives us direct perception of the situation and allows us to perceive it more accurately.
So, like many things on this path we call life we are once again pointed to what has be called the “middle way” the balancing act of what we are aware of and our understanding of how to use that knowledge to step out of what was and into what is.
Peace and Love, Jim