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I kuan tao thamma - The Four Polluted Elements Of The Mind
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The Four Polluted Elements Of The Mind

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Jan 18, 2006 at 05:17 AM
          Forasmuch as man is caught in a spider’s web of desires, his mentality will be heavily taxed, giving him no joyful peace of mind because “a single spark can start a prairie fire.” Thus the mind is the main source of man’s every intentional thought; and these thoughts, in one way or another have an influence over his behaviour.  Any wavering thought of the mind is not the work of the Great Tao rather of external circumstances and man’s own creation.  
          Are there only four toxic elements behind the veil of man’s ignorant mind?  No!  Corruption of the mind cannot be contained by numbers.  The four poisonous elements of mind namely that of: insatiable greed; fuming hatred; self-infatuation, and enthralled desires are thus numbered because they are the preeminent stimulators of man’s countless variable and fluctuating changes in mental status and behaviours. 
  1. When a person is insatiably greedy he will be blinded by the lust for gain.  Greed is like a valley that can never be filled, and man cannot stop himself from wanting more and more.  This urges him to be inclined towards having a one-sided attitude; thus refuting an infinite spiritual unrighteousness.   
  2. When fuming with hatred, man has lost proper control of himself and acts upon an upsurge of emotion.  Anger and haste hinder good counsel; thus obstructing the manifestation of a perfect spiritual perspective.
  3. When self-infatuation with fame, wealth, love, gain etc….does not meet his satisfaction, he becomes submerged in annoyance and perplexity which soon boils into bubbles of suspicion and distrust so that the focus of his mind becomes restless and whimsical.  This impedes him attaining a state of mental attentiveness and concentration; thus depriving him of a tranquil spiritual reposedness.
  4. When enthralled by desires every decision that is made is swayed by selfish considerations so much so that he becomes fickle in his views.  If man cannot conquer his desires, his desires will override him and trap him into a state of anxiety; thus he will be unable to preserve a peaceful spiritual state of unperturbedness. 
          As long as man’s mind is governed by these four poisonous elements, he unrelentingly contradicts the whole purpose of his conscience.  This is nauseatingly akin to “a piece of innocently enchanting landscape” being senselessly disfigured and stenched by the dumping of decaying heaps of rubbish, which in no time contaminates the surrounding countryside.  If remedial action is not taken, the effect spills over into other areas.  In the final run man must bear the consequences of his own deliberate actions.  Be wise; do not create trouble, for troubles will trouble you.   
          Sickness of the body must be cared for by proper treatment and medication; questionable  or dishonest thoughts of the mind must be transformed by perfect Dharma and the Great Tao. 
Confucian Analects Book: XVI
“Contemplating good, and pursuing it, as if they could not reach it; Contemplating evil, and
 shrinking from it, as they would from thrusting the hand into boiling water:- I have seen such men, as I have heard such words.”

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