What's going on in our heads is mighty restless and changes all the time, hard to control, hard to guard the peace. Let the sage straighten their mind like an arrow.
स्पन्दनं चपलं चित्तं दुरक्ष्यं दुर्निवार्यम् ।
ऋजुं करोति मेधावी इषुकार इव तेजनम् ॥ १॥
A fish on dry land shivers and flounders and it is just the same with the mind: it is constantly struggling to free itself. But from what? The thought that Death is coming.
वारिजं इव स्थले क्षिप्तं उदकस्यौकत उद्भूतः ।
परिस्पन्दत इदं चित्तं मारधेयं प्रहातुम् ॥ २॥
The mind is easily distracted by everything that stands out and that is mighty difficult to control. But if you succeed, then you are already well on your way to a source of joy within yourself.
दुर्निग्रहस्य लघुनो यत्र-काम-निपातिनः ।
चित्तस्य दमनं साधु चित्तं दान्तं सुखावहम् ॥ ३॥
But the mind sometimes works in invisible and subtle ways. Without you realizing it, the mind is distracted again with whatever attracts their attention. Let the sage guard their mind well, for only then it becomes a source of lasting joy.
सुदुर्दृशं सुनिपुणं यत्र-कामनिपाति ।
चित्तं रक्षेन्मेधावी चित्तं गुप्तं सुखावहम् ॥ ४
Hidden in the recesses of our consciousness, the mind sometimes decides to just fly away and does not ask permission for this. Let your aware self become one with your mind and free yourself from the thoughts that Death is coming.
दूरङ्गमं एकचरं अशरीरं गुहाशयम् ।
ये चित्तं संयंस्यन्ति मोक्ष्यन्ते मारबन्धनात् ॥ ५॥
The truth hides from people with shaky minds, and there are limits to what you can learn with constantly distracted thoughts due to a lack of confidence and faltering inner peace.
अनवस्थितचित्तस्य सद्धर्मं अविजानतः ।
परिप्लवप्रसादस्य प्रज्ञा न परिपूर्यते ॥ ६॥
The man who calmly controls the thoughts, who has made their mind free of lusts and temptation, who no longer thinks in terms of good or bad, this man is awake and conscious, this man knows no more fear.
अनवस्रुत चित्तस्य अनन्वाहतचेतसः ।
पुण्यपापप्रहीणस्य नाऽस्ति जाग्रतो भयम् ॥ ७॥
Imagine that your body is as glass jar so fragile in this life. Wouldn’t that be a reason to turn your mind into a fortress to protect it from all the temptations that would take you off your path? Who wins? You or your thoughts? Then guard your newly acquired treasure and be ever ready and on the lookout for MARA.
कुंभोपमं कायमिमं विदित्वा नगरोपमं चित्तमिदं स्थापयित्त्वा ।
युध्येत मारं प्रज्ञायुधेन जितं च रक्षेदनिवेशनः स्यात् ॥ ८॥
Because sooner than you would have realized comes the sad end of our body. Lifeless, it will lie there like a discarded piece of wood on the side of the road.
अचिरं वतायं कायः पृथिवीं अधिशेष्यते ।
क्षुद्रोऽपेतविज्ञानो निरर्थं इव कलिङ्गरम् ॥ ९॥
Enemies can harm each other, and people who live with hatred can hurt others tremendously; but there is nothing that makes a person suffer more than their own mind when it takes a wrong turn.
द्विट् द्विषं यत् कुर्यात् वैरी वा पुनर्वैरिणम् ।
मिथ्याप्रणिहितं चित्तं पापीयांसं एनं ततः कुर्यात् ॥ १०॥
A father, a mother or another family member can do a person a lot of good; but one owes more to the mastery of their own mind when it can stay the course.
न तत् मातापितरौ कुर्यातां अन्ये चापि च ज्ञातिकाः ।
सम्यक्प्रणिहितं चित्तं श्रेयांसं एनं ततः कुर्यात् ॥ ११॥