Everyone has certain responsibilities that they must attend to in life. But often, we overlook the most important responsibility, and that is our own inner peace. If we do not let our minds rest, and find at least a few moments of inner tranquility in our day, it can affect us in numerous ways. Stress and anxiety affect our mood, it affects our health, it affects the quality of our lives, it affects the quality of our relationships. How many people have made themselves physically ill because of worry and stress? How many relationships have suffered or broken up over someone being a workaholic or just not being mentally present even when they were physically there? If we really think about it, we will see that quieting the mind so that we can be fully present in each moment is of vital importance.
Sitting with the body motionless is not necessarily resting the mind. Our thoughts can be going over a million things and be in great turmoil, with the body not moving a single muscle. Immersing ourselves in television or video games is also not an ineffective form of attaining inner peace. These things are like putting a topical anesthetic on the surface of our conscious mind, while the turmoil still churns behind our shallow distractions. How many times have you turned on a movie, and found that when the story line was at a lull, your mind was drifting back to your troubles or the lists of activities that needed to be done tomorrow. We must learn to quiet the mind and empty it of all worry and stress. The only effective way to do this is through some form of meditation. Whether it's sitting quietly and concentrating on the breath, observing our thoughts and letting them go or being out in nature and just letting the beauty of our surroundings enfold us in its stillness. The quieting of the mind works differently for everyone, but it is a vital part of our daily lives. In taking at least five minutes in our day to detach from the noise and static of the world around us, we allow ourselves to be at ease within ourselves. It helps us to be in tune with our own higher power in the universe and within ourselves. when we are at ease, we are more focused and present in our lives. We live life more fully and love more completely. Just as stress and distraction has a negative, trickle down effect on our lives...inner peace has a positive one.
When most people are getting ready to make the transition from this life to the next, they do not lay upon their beds and wonder if they did all the jobs in their lives that needed to be done. They're not worried about what activity was left undone. They don't congratulate themselves for always being up on things and not being lax with their duties. One hundred percent of the time the questions are: Did they love enough? Did they make enough time for their own spiritual practices and connect with the divine in their lives? They often regret it if they did not take enough time in their lives for the little things, to live, laugh, and love. And they will often speak about how peaceful or unpeaceful their lives have been until that final/fateful moment. This should give us some indication of what our greatest responsibility is for ourselves and the souls around us - Love and peace; and we cannot love another until we give ourselves peace and unclutter the mind of all its busyness.