Someone asked me the following: “Sometimes I see visions of departed souls. I don’t understand this. Can you explain it?”

Yes, the mind can do anything. It creates images and can foresee things. The mental capacity for that is there. Recently, I read some articles about scientists who are finding out that even before something happens, the mind can recognize it, though it doesn’t come into your awareness. And that is true not only of peoples’ minds, but of other things also. They can show that trees talk to each other, and when they feel the hurt they defend themselves. That shows the trees have a mind.

But you don’t have to worry about what the mind sees. Let it see whatever it sees—it’s all mental play, so just watch the show. The mind puts all kinds of images on the screen. When you go to the cinema, you see many kinds of shows: good, bad, violent. And, you watch everything for fun. In the same way, you can watch your own mind putting on a show and you can have fun as you watch. That’s another important thing. Watch your own mind. Become a witness of the mind. In normal life, I hear people saying, “Oh I don’t know why, but my mind is upset today. It was alright yesterday. But today it’s terribly upset.” What does that mean? It was alright before and now it is not. How do you know this? It’s because you are watching that. You know that. The common thing between yesterday and today is the knowing. You knew it was okay yesterday. You know it is terrible today. That means that you know, which means you are watching your mind.

But, here’s the problem: you don’t remain always watching. Very often you become the mind. You say, I’m so upset today. Or, you say “My finger got burned. It hurts and I feel terrible. Your finger is hurt, but you feel terrible. Why you? It’s your finger that got burned, not you. Behind all of that—the upset in the mind, the finger burn—there is you: the Knower. So know the knower, see the seer, hear the hearer. There is somebody behind all these things: the all-knowing person. You are that all-knowing person, but you don’t know that. That’s the problem. So try to know the Knower.

By Sri Swami Satchidananda