Swami Veda Bharati took his Mahasamadhi July 14, 2015. He holds the prestigious title of Mahamandaleshwara in the Swami order of monks. Swami Veda was also the Chancellor of HIHT University, Dehradun, which was established by Master Swami Rama. He authored approximately 18 books on Indian spirituality including a 1500 page comprehensive commentary on two of the four chapters of Patanjali’s Yoga-sutras. Before taking the vows of Swamihood in 1992, Swami Veda Bharati was known as Dr. Usharbudh Arya.
Now, the struggle to purify one's thoughts during meditation can be a hard one. People struggle with these waves upon waves of emotions and commotions arising in the mind and become very discouraged during their meditations, or about their meditations.
I'll give you one bit of advice about it and that is this: You will not eliminate these waves of the mind during meditation by fighting them. If you ask me how I stop them, I will say that there is no way you can stop them. That seems very discouraging, but it is not. Really, it's not. You see, think of the ocean. You stand on the beach and you watch the ocean – mighty waves, storms, waves, ship-tossing, waves rising and falling. Ask a child to draw a picture of the ocean and he will draw waves. That is everybody's idea of an ocean: waves and thundering sounds. But Jacques Cousteau wrote about the same ocean, and he named his book The Silent World.
One of my hobbies is scuba diving, and if a diver wants to go diving and experience this “silent world,” what does he do? Does he stand there in the boat and say, "Look at these thundering huge waves; how do I stop them?” There is no way he can stop them, so he puts on his gear and takes a jump into the sea, and twenty feet below the surface there are no waves. It is a silent world. All you hear is the sound of your breathing. You are in the silent world. And you go down to the depth of two-hundred feet in some nice tropical waters and you look up. And there is this boat, and people tossing and turning and hanging onto the sides of the boat, scared and afraid to fall into where you are enjoying yourself. See?
Many years ago – 1965, I believe – I was teaching in England in the city of Birmingham. The city council organized a conference on the problem of leisure for modern man from a religious point of view. And they called people from all different religious viewpoints, Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Moslem and so forth. And I went and opened my presentation with these sentences – nothing very profound, but you might like it:
"You look a little tired these days, Sir. Are you not going for a vacation this year?"
"Yes, I certainly am."
"When? What will you do? For how long? Where? When?”
“Right now. What will I do? Go deep sea diving."
"For how long?”
You can go deep sea diving within anywhere you are. You cannot stop the surface waves. But only a small part of your mind is actually involved with those waves. There is a vast depth to your meditation where it is linked to infinity. Don't fight the thoughts that are arising. Keep coming back to doing what you have to do. All that the diver needs is his breathing gear. Focus on your breathing. Observe the breath. Continue to feel it. Maintain one single word or your personal mantram. Keep coming back to it. Keep coming back to it. Keep coming back to it. And you will learn to dive past that area of the ocean of your mind which is filled with these stormy waves.