Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|Self-talk, daydreaming and consciousness|
|09/17/01 at 01:26:44|
|Assalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh|
[center]Self-talk, daydreaming and consciousness
By Dr Muhammad Kamal Al-Shareef[/center]
Perhaps one of the main features that distinguish man is his ability to think of what lies beyond his immediate position in both time and place. He is able to remember the past and contemplate the future. He is also able to imagine how his life would be in places and circumstances other than those in which he finds himself.
This means that he can foresee things and eventualities, making plans to take care of these. Similarly, he is able to reflect on past events and evaluate his actions, feeling happy with what is good and taking issue with himself on account of any error.
This ability to move beyond one's present situation is highly useful for man, enabling him to be creative and innovative, and to plan for different eventualities.
This being clear, it is important to remember that being absorbed with what is beyond the present moment and the existing situation means that the person concerned is present here physically, but somewhere else mentally. If such a situation becomes predominant, the mind of the person concerned becomes preoccupied with 'self-talk'. He expects something and begins to think of what action to take when it happens, then he expects something different and thinks of what to do or say in case it happens. Alternatives abound and self-talk continues and preoccupation with these means that one is at least partially distracted from his present situation. Whenever he is on his own, that is, if he is not talking to someone else, his mind wanders away. Even though he may be in a crowd, his mind is somewhere else. Even when people talk to him, he does not listen properly. He may be preparing in his mind what to say when they stop and it is his turn to talk.
This is a situation where the person hears but does not listen, looks around but hardly sees anything. As time passes, he begins to lose his sense of beauty. Whatever was attractive at first sight is no longer of any attraction, because his mind is diverted from considering the present situation and the immediate surroundings. Nothing overcomes such absent-mindedness unless it is new and exciting.
When a person frequently indulges in such self-talk, he is deprived of any enjoyment of the beauty or the pleasure of what he sees around him. His sense of reality becomes blurred and he becomes oblivious to his surroundings and to people around him. His actions become largely mechanical. Thinking about what he does or says takes place away from the center of consciousness. Such a person moves around and does things while his mind is preoccupied with something different. He is like a daydreamer. He leaves a small portion of his consciousness for the world around him. He is largely unaware of what he says or does. The best picture we may draw of such a person is that of someone who walks in the street absorbed with his thoughts. He sees the people around him, and does not bump into anyone, but can hardly describe anyone, because his mind is not alert.
That a man is able to do much in a semi-mechanical way means that he can save much of his mental energy for more important matters. But should such mechanical performance predominate his speech, action and vision most of the time, it takes him away from reality. It becomes a constant case of daydreaming.
A person in such a situation loses his sense of awareness, which is needed for any enjoyment. To regain it may become difficult. This results in a loss of serenity and reassurance. He will need to re-train himself to be aware, free of daydreaming, so that he may live in the present, experiencing all that it contains and interacting with it in every sense. Thus he lives his life without remaining away from the present time and place.
Nothing can help a human being to free himself or herself from such daydreaming so as to live the present and become aware of all around like faith and worship. It is through faith and worship that a human being is able to overcome sad memories and worrying prospects.
[i]"Islam in Perspective" - Arab News - 09 April 2001[/i]
Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh
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