The world comes to exist because we are aware of it. We cannot live in a reality of which we are unaware. The world depends on our minds in order to exist, just as our minds depend on the world as the subject of our awareness. Put differently, our mind’s awareness can be said to bring the world into being. What our mind focuses on becomes our world. Seen this way, the mind does not seem so insignificant in relation to the world out there, does it?
We neither can nor want to know every single thing that happens in the world. If we did, we would go crazy from the overload of information. If we look at the world through the lens of our mind, the way my friend did, we will readily notice what we are looking for, because our mind will focus on it. Given that the world we see through our mind’s eye is limited, if we can train our mind and choose wisely where to focus, then we will be able to experience the world corresponding to the state of our mind.
There is a famous Buddhist saying that everyone appears as buddhas in the eyes of the Buddha and everyone appears as pigs in the eyes of a pig. It suggests that the world is experienced according to the state of one’s mind. When your mind is joyful and compassionate, the world is, too. When your mind is filled with negative thoughts, the world appears negative, too. When you feel overwhelmed and busy, remember that you are not powerless. When your mind rests, the world also rests.
Excerpt From: Haemin Sunim. “The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down: How to Be Calm and Mindful in a Fast-Paced World”.