Question: How does the mind make itself stop doing what it's doing?

Sri Chinmoy: The mind will never be calm and quiet unless it consciously listens to some higher power. The higher power here is the heart. If the mind consciously listens to the higher power, then it will derive much benefit. But if the higher power forces the mind to surrender, then the mind will not get the utmost benefit. How can the mind be a calm, quiet and perfect instrument of the higher power of the divine? First we have to enter into the heart and see the difference between the heart's capacity and the mind's capacity. It is we who have to differentiate between the two. It is we who have to see the capacity and the quality of the heart and the capacity and the quality of the mind. It is easy to criticise the mind. The mind is suspecting, the mind is doubting, the mind is limiting. But at the same time, we have to be fully convinced of the capacity of the heart. The heart has limitless capacity on the strength of its oneness with the soul.

Instead of entering into the mind, which is now unlit and obscure, we have to enter into the heart. Let us stay there for as many hours, as many days, as many months, as many years as possible. And then, when we feel that the light, the illumination of the heart-room has permeated our whole existence, let us enter into the mind-room.

In the beginning we have to feel that there is only one room that can save us: the heart-room. Then, when the light of the heart-room enters into the mind-room, we will not discard the mind-room. The mind-room is also a room, and a day will come when we will have to stay in that room because it also has possibility, potentiality and capacity. Up to now, we have not used that room properly due to our own ignorance in the physical, in the vital and in the mind.

To make the mind calm and quiet, to make the mind a proper instrument, a chosen instrument of God, we have to first approach the heart and remain in the heart before entering into the mind. We have to get strength, light and power from the heart and with these qualities enter into the mind. Then we shall be able to compel the mind to surrender its existence to the heart-power for its own good. At that time the surrender of the mind to the heart will not be the surrender of a slave to his master. No, it will be the surrender of our obscure, unaspiring, doubting existence to the confident and everlastingly assured existence of the soul. The mind will not be the loser. On the contrary, the mind will be the real victor over its own ignorance.