Heaven and Hell A True Reflection of our Inner State of Mind
It’s well said that we ourselves are the sole creator of ‘heaven’ and ‘hell’ during our life itself. These are not the imaginary ‘places’ beyond earth where we take re-birth after death. We create and experience such conditions in this life only. When our sufferings are severe and continuous, we create ‘hell’ and when our life is full of joy and happiness, we make ‘heaven’ in our life. It all depends on how well or badly we manage our minds. The mind can be our best master or the worst servant that we can ever imagine, depending on the control we exercise over it. Outer reality is nothing but the reflection of our Inner State Of Mind i.e Our own inner World.
If we are happy and contented then the outer world is full of joy and happiness. On the contrary, if the mind is depressed, sad or distressed then the world around us becomes unfriendly and hostile. It’s just a matter of how we perceive the world in our minds.
“We are what we think. We all arise from our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.” Thus, spoke Lord Buddha around 2,500 years ago. In a very real sense, we are active participants in the creation of reality around us. If our mind is filled with negativity, anger, and fearful thoughts and feelings, we attract similar conditions from the outside reality. Likewise, if we are joyful and full of positivity, the world will look pleasant and cheerful.
Outer World & Inner State Of Mind
The outer world is nothing but a reflection, a mirror image of our inner state of mind. The universal law, “As within, so without,” puts it more succinctly. That is why our spiritual teachers say that the key to eliminating something from our external world is to eliminate it from our internal world of thought and feeling.
Reality Exists In Mind
It is well said that “the reality is not found outside our mind”. Everything we perceive in the world has its roots in our inner world of mind, thoughts, feelings, and beliefs. Tranquillity and serenity of mind will make the world wonderful, with friendliness all around. Similarly, if our mind is in turmoil, then we are certain to see a tumultuous outer world. Buddhist Zen masters say that the reality in the mind is displayed in our outer world. We try to fight the external reality without realizing that we first need to address our own thoughts, inner feelings, and the conflicts arising within the mind. Fighting the external world is like breaking the mirror; it serves no purpose and only reflects more negativity. The reason is simple and straightforward: The outer world is a true copy of our inner world.
We all perceive this world in our own way, depending on our state of mind. Hence, our mind sees only partial reality, determined by what we are most interested in, or what we want to experience. The world around us has no dearth of good people and pleasant things full of beauty, joy, and happiness, but they are perceptible only if we are good at heart, and share love, affection, and compassion with others. Otherwise, the amount of negativity that appears to be in the outside world does not allow our minds to be at peace. Therefore, when we look at hostility and negativity around us and allow that to influence our thinking and behavior, we are unintentionally expanding the scope of negativity.
There is a constant loop of energy connecting us and the world around us. It is extremely important that we become aware of what we are sharing with the world. Whatever we are giving to the outside reality is coming back to us in one form or another. If we share negativity with the outer world, we must expect more energy of a similar nature to be coming back to us. In other words, all that negativity that we think is coming at us from the outside environment is actually the same energy that we have earlier shared with the world. The reverse is equally true. That is why people who engage in philanthropic activities are found to be happier and more contented than those who do not; they are getting far more in return from the outer world.
Ancient spiritual texts teach us that if we want to see changes in our life and the surrounding world, then we must start from the inside. Once again, this means that if we change and reform ourselves internally, these changes will naturally be reflected back to us. Though it is difficult to think how such a shift would be possible, many of us have succeeded in demonstrating this principle.
Life can be far more peaceful and enjoyable by adopting this simple mantra:
“If we want happiness in our life and the surrounding world, we must inculcate happy and pleasant feelings inside“
If we love others, we will see that love in our reality mirror, which is our perceived external world. Rather than changing the forces operating in the outside world, we must follow this simple mantra.
It’s abundantly clear that what we are experiencing inside is reflected in the outer reality. If we are creating heavenly feelings inside ourselves by way of positivity and happiness, we are living in heaven. The reverse is equally true. If we are trapped in a loop of hellish thoughts and feelings, we are living in hell. Both heaven and hell are human constructs. We create reality through our thoughts and intentions. The choice is ours: heaven or hell. Our ancient scriptures convincingly explained that we will go to heaven if we do good deeds and make good karma. Otherwise, our front-row seat is reserved in hell. This belief of the “Law of Karma” continues to be widely accepted to this day.
Self-Created World Inside The Mind
The world out there is a human construct. We perceive and construct images and models of reality inside our minds. Our beliefs about the world around us, the thoughts, feelings, and emotions, and the state of our mind all contribute to creating the reality inside the mind. There is no objective or ‘true’ reality outside us. For each one of us, we perceive the world in our own unique way. There is no ‘true reality. This is the reason; we all think and perceive the world in different ways. Hence, so many conflicts and contradictions in our society. We all live in our own self-created ‘world’. It rarely comes to our mind that others may have an altogether different version of reality in their mind.
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