Question: But how to give up this false idea that the mind is real?
Annamalai Swami: The same way that you give up any wrong idea. You simply stop believing in it. If this does not happen spontaneously when you hear the truth from a teacher, keep telling yourself, ‘I am not the mind; I am not the mind. There is no mind; there is no mind. Consciousness alone exists.’ If you have a firm conviction that this is the truth, one day this firm conviction will mature to the point where it becomes your direct experience.
Consciousness alone exists. If you generate a firm conviction that this is the truth, eventually this firm conviction will become your own direct experience.
Consciousness alone exists. That is to say, whatever exists is consciousness alone. Keep this in mind and don’t allow yourself to regard anything else as being real. If you fail and give even a little reality to the mind, it will become your own false reality. Once this initial wrong identification – ‘I am the mind, the mind is real’ – has happened, problems and suffering will follow.
Don’t be afraid of the mind. It’s a false tiger, not a real one. Something that is not real cannot harm you. Fear and anxiety may come to you if you believe that there is a real tiger in your vicinity. Someone may be making tiger noises as a joke to make you afraid, but when he reveals himself, all your fears go because you suddenly understand that there never was a tiger outside your imagination.