Dissolving Boredom

Dissolving Boredom

Boredom can feel valid and justified, but it is simply the mind craving external stimulation. Sit with it, be with the feeling, allow it to be, and it cannot remain for long.

Boredom is a state of dissatisfaction or restlessness. No doubt it is not pleasant. The mind is so used to being fed from the outside with anything noisy, that when the noise is not there, it becomes disturbed. In the same way that a drug addict feels troubled when the drugs are removed, the mind can not stand external stimuli (on which it feels dependent) being taken away. The mind always wants stimulation. Without stimulation your thoughts would subside, so the mind-made identity would subside – and this is what the mind fears most. So, it will make you feel bored so that you give it stimulation and do not question its reality.

So how do dissolve boredom? You just stop running from it. Be with it. It will not last. Fully feel how boredom feels. You can even make it an investigation. Just be with the feelings without interpreting them, and without trying to get rid of them. When approached in this way, instantly their disturbing power is weakened. They are just sensations. Whatever you allow and accept fully cannot disturb you. You may notice at first that the feelings get worse, or your mind tries to distract itself with something to do, perhaps something totally insane or random. The mind may complain, resist, imagine things that are not here – let it all happen. Give up the fight. Just remain, relax for a moment, be an empty space for these feelings.

The boredom is then not such a big deal. It is just a feeling, which does not last. Beneath the feelings of boredom there is an impersonal, untouched space, a stillness without which no feeling could exist. Pay attention to this stillness, how it is at peace, how it needs nothing. In what way are you separate from this stillness? The only apparent separation is when you take yourself to be the thought of “I”. What if you do not assume yourself to be any thought? Who are you then?

To get rid of boredom you can give the mind what it wants in some external stimuli – but then you are always its slave. Or you face boredom square on, without fearing it or suffering it. This removes boredom at the root, so it dissolves and does not return so easily.

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