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Questioner: An episode in my life haunts me. It’s me who keeps on revising that ugly memory when there is a similar situation? How do I prevent myself from such an emotional self harm?
Acharya Prashant: The mind is such a bottomless abyss. An abyss tired of its own bareness, vacancy. An abyss trying to fill itself in all possible ways. A scared loneliness groping, clutching at everything, even if those things are obviously useless, or even harmful.
The past is therefore clung to. If life is insubstantial, mind tries to find substance in the past.
The question, hence, is not so much about why the past keeps haunting the mind. Mind has to stick to something. The mind cannot live alone. If, among all the objects available for engagement, the past, or an event of the past, appears the most attractive, then the mind will obviously stick to that event, and keep revisiting it by way of memory.
Hence, can we, today, give the mind something very beautiful? Something so beautiful that it enamours the mind, and something so vast it fills up the abyss? If we can bring the mind to beauty and truth, the mind would be both enthralled and illuminated. Then it will find no need, no reason, to repeatedly rush to the past.
How to find beauty and vastness today? Maybe one can begin by going to those who devoted their lives to peace and clarity. There have been those who have sung all their life of beauty and Truth. Maybe, in their company, the mind will learn what to seek and where to seek.