Emotions and memories are strong forces, such that your mind is unable to cope with them. Now, being sentimental, being emotional is generally regarded as a positive attribute by society at large. But know that being emotional means handing over your remote control to others.

Your mind is like a monkey who is controlled by his keeper and acts as per the command of the keeper. The street monkey has just one keeper but you have made the entire world your keeper and you dance to all their tunes! You keep on getting swept away by the waves of emotions. Being emotional means being vulnerable, such that anyone can shatter you just by pushing your conditioned trigger buttons. So when someone triggers the button of praise, you feel good; when someone triggers the button of criticism, you feel bad and this continues ad infinitum. Imagine the state of a tyre that is repeatedly inflated and deflated, what will its condition be?! Thus someone says something derogatory and you weep, someone sings your eulogy and you rejoice, someone disparages you and you get angry, so on and so forth.

Mind is a slithering snake that never stays still in any one place. It is continually engaged in conflicting thoughts and emotions. Every emotion comes along with its antagonistic counterpart. Thus sometimes when you are laughing a lot, your own mind throws up an apprehensive alarm: Is this an omen for upcoming sorrow? Even in the midst of enjoying some pleasurable moment, the fear of losing that pleasure never leaves your mind. That is why angst-ridden lovers so often seek reassurances from each other – promise me that you will continue to love me forever! What is this if not a mere play of emotions? And emotions are subject to change. Sometimes you like someone, at other times you don’t.

In this context, it is important to note that one should never have an emotional tie with the Guru. Now you claim to like the Guru and hence you come to the ashram, you attend the meditation camps. But the day the Guru does not entertain you anymore, the day the Guru does not behave in accordance with your expectation, will you still respond in the same way? No, the emotion will instantly change to dislike.

The relation with the Guru ought to be like the relation you have with your own pure Self. This entails seeing the Guru as the pure Self, as your own real Self. You can be disassociated from your body and also from your mind, but you can never ever be separated from your pure Self.

Thus get it very clear what emotions actually entail. From your childhood you have been told that one should pray to God with sentiments, serve a master with sentiments. But where do emotions, sentiments arise? In the mind and mind is like water – at times hot, at times cold, at times liquid, at times frozen solid. If the only tie you have with the master is an emotional one, then know that it can be broken anytime. One expectation not fulfilled and in that very instant, all the so-called love will evaporate into thin air. The next moment you will start looking for another master! Thus the tie has to be deeper, one that is beyond the mind.

Extracted from the book 'Mind Undressed' by Anandmurti Gurumaa