What I was thinking as things passed in and out of the mist today is that the mist is very much like the thing that’s in between our thoughts. What I mean is, I could stand and stare out into the mist and not see very much. Then a bird would fly through the mist. I’d watch it for a while, and then it would disappear again--back into the mist. I’m not sure where it came from or where it went, and I’ll most likely never see it again. Sometimes the outline of a bird could be seen coming toward me, but it never quite made it through the mist. Then it veered its course and disappeared again, never quite making an entrance or an exit, just existing as a temporary shadow of what I thought it might be.
The things that came into my vision--birds (birds at this time of year, but sometimes boats and seals and buoys, etc., at other times)--are what I compare to my thoughts. My thoughts flit in and out of my attention. Some are very strong and obvious and clear. Others fly on the periphery and are very shadowy and difficult to see. Like the birds, I often do not know what direction my thoughts will come from, how long they’ll stay, and when they’ll leave.
Unless I make a conscious effort to control them, that is. Unless I decide which thoughts will enter, how long they’ll stay, and when they’ll have to go in order to accomplish a particular goal. It’s possible, but it takes effort and concentration, and it isn’t something that can be done constantly. Only then do my thoughts differ from the birds. Ordinarily, however, they are exactly the same.
But what are the thoughts and the birds flying in and out of? What are they hiding in? What is disguising them? For the birds, that’s easy. It’s the mist, the fog, the vapor of the water below. For our thoughts, it’s similar. It’s a mist-like substance within our brains. We could call it the “mind.” The mind is a mist. It is separate from the brain. The brain is the physical entity, like the water in the ocean. The mind exists in the same place as the brain, but it is not a physical entity like the brain. It is more like the mist. But just because you can’t hold it, doesn’t mean it isn’t real. The mind, like the mist (which is usually invisible), is very real. And like the mist, it is the same substance as the brain, but on a different level, having been transmuted.
Remember what I said about water. The Great Alchemist is at work here. The mist and the mind are supporting reality, deciding what we will and will not see. Because if we do not see it, if we do not acknowledge it, it is not there. At least not for us. The eyes are the easiest sense to trick and not much good in a fog. Rely, instead, on your other senses. He with ears, let him hear.