The 5 Chitta Bhumis- 5 States of Mind (Part 2)

Updated: Feb 22, 2021

In Part 1 of the chitta bhumis article series we went through an introduction to the mind (chitta) and the Kshipta mind- the "monkey" mind, jumping from desire to desire, from thought to thought. Now we will see what happens with mudha and vikshipta mind patterns.

2. Mudha – The Donkey mind

The Mudha or Dull state of mind is dominated by the ‘tamas’ guna in which the mind is sluggish, sleepy and lacking vitality. Due to the sluggish nature of mind, a lack the energy observed in this state to deal with subtle and deep issues of life. The guna's pattern of mudha mind is Tamas/Rajas/Sattva (T/R/S).

Most of us usually oscillate between Kshipta and Mudha states during the waking hours. We are impelled towards an object of sense through rajas nature of our behavior. However, if the desired result is denied to us or greater effort is required, the dull mind due to lack of concentration find excuses and entraps us into a feeling of dissatisfaction. In this case, tamas guna can drive us into a state of sadness or depression.

In nutshell, Mudha state of mind is when you are not able to hear your inner voice and communicate to your true self.

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Symptoms of Mudha State

  1. Lack of energy and vitality, lazy, sleepy

  2. Poor concentration, confused

  3. Distorted connection with the inner self, submissive

  4. Depression /Sadness

  5. Heavy, attached, infatuated

  6. Forgetful, fearful, unclear in thoughts

How To Handle Donkey Mind

This mostly happens in cases where you have to adapt to a totally new life situation and you lose a sense of identity in the newfound space.

To handle mind in this state, drop all your thoughts, and reconnect to your inner world through Yoga and meditation so that you are able to find your ultimate true self which will stay with you in all situations of life. Yoga helps you to stay connected with spiritual self so that you can move through changing life situations with newfound ease. The recommended path is again ashtanga yoga as this type of mind needs work on the gross and subtle body layers.

3. Vikshipta – The Butterfly mind

There are moments in life where sattva guna starts to dominate and the mind can focus and concentrate. We feel balanced, happy and clear in all spheres and life appears to be a beautiful flow. Then, as some difficult and painful situations crop up, our mind gets distracted and we fall back into old patterns. The mind is pulled away from Sattva back to rajas or tamas.

This is the Vikshipta state, the fluctuating mind, where the mind is alternating between moments of clarity and distraction. In this state, you are not fully in control of your thoughts. However, you are able to be aware of the subtleties of life. The vikshipta mind guna's pattern is Rajas/Sattva/Tamas (R/S/T).

For example, in our Yoga practice when are fully absorbed into meditation, we experience moments of absolute calmness and focus. However, when there is the slightest distraction, we lose our focus. We get distracted and blame the external factors for creating a disturbance. We blame the environment and not our perception. In this situation, consistent practice of Yoga helps you to understand that we can never change the external environment and enables you to handle life with equanimity in all situations.

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Symptoms of Vikshipta State

  1. Has tasted clarity and concentration but fluctuates

  2. Calm mind, however, gets easily distracted

  3. Better concentration

  4. Mind is sometimes stable and other times confused

  5. When sattvik: steady, calm, patient, happy, enthusiastic, reflective, intelligent, peaceful, balanced.

How To Handle Butterfly Mind

Here the path that needs to be taken is kriya yoga. The kleshas can be also overcome by practicing kriya yoga. Later the fire of discriminative knowledge roasts the kleshas to Dagdhabeeja state (burned-seed). Kryia yoga includes three virtues which are capable of reducing the kleshas: tapa (fortitude), swadhyaya (self-study) and Ishvarapranidhana (surrendering to God). It is the yoga of practice.

Tapa controls our physical actions. Reflecting on your thoughts, reading spiritual books and reminding yourself what is more worthwhile in life is swadhyaya. A total devotion to God is Ishvarapranidhana- surrendering all fruits of actions to Him. Read more about kryia yoga in our next articles.

By focusing more on meditation, you will be able to hold on to the periods of calmness and make them a way of your life. Regular meditation practice will also instill a better sense of clarity so that you do not get easily distracted by difficulties and handle life with equanimity.

In the next article- Part 3 we will explore the Ekagra and Nirodha chitta bhumis.

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