Do you spend much of your life in your mind, plagued with thoughts that go nowhere but toward negativity? Do you spend nights wide awake because you cannot get out of your own mind? This is what Don Miguel Ruiz, the author of “The Four Agreements” calls #mitote.
The “mitote” (me-toe-tay) as described in The Four Agreements, refers to the cacophony of voices in your head. They are all talking, but none of them seem to listen.
The mitote is driven by all those false beliefs, self importance, fears, layers of denial and justifications. As you become aware the mitote can appear to be an endless stream of useless chatter talking over itself. Try to turn it off in the beginning and you get a lesson in humility. As you learn to observe it with neutrality, which is a critical step in dissolving the mitote, you find that it often tricks you by pulling your attention into the conversation.
It is a matrix of illusions.
When I ask a client if he or she meditates, often the person responds, “I try, but I can’t seem to stop the endless flow of chatter in my mind. The harder I try to stop the thoughts, the worse they get.”
No one said you had to stop the chatter to counteract mitote. Imagine having an antenna extending from your head. The mind receives signals from the Mitote when the antenna is about 2 inches from your head. But, when you want to experience Divine Mind, you must extend the antenna higher and higher, ignoring the noise and static from the lower frequency and focusing solely on the higher frequency.
We must learn the language of Spirit and focus on it only to receive the power of Silence and Peace. This is the intrigue of meditation. When someone finds this space above the throng of confusion, you feel as if you are:
There are many things in life that are beyond our control. However, it is possible to take responsibility for our own states of mind – and to change them for the better. According to Buddhism this is the most important thing we can do, and Buddhism teaches that it is the only real antidote to our own personal sorrows, and to the anxieties, fears, hatreds, and general confusions that beset the human condition.
Meditation is a means of transforming the mind. Buddhist meditation practices are techniques that encourage and develop concentration, clarity, emotional positivity, and a calm seeing of the true nature of things. By engaging with a particular meditation practice you learn the patterns and habits of your mind, and the practice offers a means to cultivate new, more positive ways of being. With regular work and patience these nourishing, focused states of mind can deepen into profoundly peaceful and energized states of mind. Such experiences can have a transformative effect and can lead to a new understanding of life.
My personal practice does, in fact, get me to the peace beyond understanding. However, mitote can also affect our daytime, cognitive mind, as well.
For example, you may be engaged in love making. Suddenly, you find yourself thinking about someone else or something else, completely disengaged from the now and from your partner. If you are prone to drifting off into your own head and imaginings, the mitote has a hold on your life.
The key to disengaging from these annoying thoughts or intriguing fantasies is not about stopping them; but instead, ignoring them. When you hear a consistent, annoying sound in the background of your life, eventually that sound disappears in your mind. If you want to listen to it you can, but generally, your mind tunes out the interference, especially if you focus and concentrate.
Many mothers understand this concept with children who can whine and cry all day. Moms begin the process of care giving by listening to every whimper. But, eventually, the mother realizes to have her own life and thoughts, she must disengage from the whining enough to focus in on making dinner, taking a shower, and paying the bills. She doesn’t completely ignore the child, but she learns to lift her antenna to a higher place to get adult channels into her brain. If she didn’t, she would probably go bonkers.
Even still, if you master this process of tuning out the mitote, you still must get to the meditation practice to learn to master the mind. Mastering the mind is the single most important aspect of our human existence. If you can do this, you are well on your way to mastering everything in life.
When you master your thoughts, you are also on your way to mastering the body and its health and well-being, a key factor in spiritual maturation.
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You don’t get to this voice if reason or recognize it unless you spend time with yourself in silence, asking yourself important self-talk questions. This is like dating. You must get to know the voice of the Spirit by spending time in meditation and silence. This is the only I know to clearly download the power of wisdom and recognize the voice—IN TIMES OF TRAUMA—that is always directing YOU into safety!
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