Practical benefits and techniques of Journaling – Part 7

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“Krishna consciousness movement is meant to save human society from spiritual death.” – Srila Prabhupada

6. Experience journal

Since the last time you wrote a journal, what was the most touching experience you went through?

I once saw a badly mashed vehicle, and an ambulance taking the accident victims away. I soon got busy and forgot about the ghastly accident. A few days later when I sat down to write my ‘Experience Journal’, I realized this accident had an impact on me. My journal took me down memory lane – how I lost three dear friends over a period of fifteen years, to road accidents. And what those friends meant to me and their death taught me many lessons. And then my journal led me to examine my views on relationships and friendships. By the time I finished my thirty minute journal, I realized the accident helped me recalibrate significant things of my life.

The key here is: first write down the event that seems important to you in terms of an experience you had. Then dive deeper into the event – as to why you think the incident was important. As you dig more, you’d enter your inner world of your aspirations and value systems.

Daily experiences can teach us a lot of lessons if we only learn to pause and reflect. When we allow those events to ask and answer questions about our lives and ambitions, we learn and grow. We see a reality beyond what has happened on a particular day.

Journaling improves self-awareness but is self-awareness same as self-realization?

Self-awareness is the preliminary stage of Self-realization.

First there is a stage of disconnect – we are unaware of ourselves- of what we really want in our lives. We are on a chariot with no control over the horses. The mind pulls us everywhere and we are a mute witness to its running riot in our lives. Journaling helps us hold the reins of the chariot of our lives; we have more clarity and control. This is the stage of self-awareness.

Self-realization is when you let go the reins of your life again – but this time, it’s not the mind, but a higher universal force that takes charge of your life. You are a willing instrument in the hands of the divine – you are led to a reality and action beyond your own tiny insecurities and desires. You now chose to live for a cause higher than your own self. When you place your fragile existence in the hands of a higher intelligence, you’ve truly risen beyond your mind and even yourself – you’ve embraced the cosmic force. And this intelligence is known in different traditions by different names – Krishna, paramatma, brahman, Om, etc. When we surrender our lives to this person/force, and live our lives in harmony with this truth, that’s called self-realization.

“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection.” – Anai Nin

To be continued….

Source: https://yogaformodernage.com/practical-benefits-and-techniques-of-journaling-part-7/