The Train Song

When Jacqueline answered a question about the mind in an earlier newsletter, she promised to send us something she wrote about “The Train Song”. She has adapted this teaching to suit older pupils at our schools. Here is the song itself followed by Jacqueline’s comments.

THE TRAIN SONG – Witten and sung by Kirtana

Just because the tracks are laid
Or just because your ticket’s paid for
And some crazed conductor keeps on calling out your name
You don’t need to board the train
Trace the thoughts that come and go
You are not your thoughts, you know
So why get all caught up in where they lead
You are who these thoughts are passing through – don’t you see?
Be free …………

Even when you’re feeling frightened
Sad or hurt or unenlightened
You can find the peace that underlies what passes by
Don’t mistake the weather for the sky of your being
Why mistake the weather for the sky
Feelings rise and fall away – even those you wish would stay
So why equate your sense of self with mood
You are who emotion passes through
Be free …………

What a blessing to have taken birth in this human form
With a chance to see who we are
Who we are was really never born and can never die
Is always free

If destiny decides to strike some version of the script you like
And make a melodrama of your endless cabaret
You know you can still enjoy the play – yes you can
If you’re still and you know how to play
Just treat it like a mystery and view it from the balcony
Laugh and cry and stomp your feet – but don’t believe a thing
You are who these scenes are passing through – don’t you see?
You are who this play is passing through
Be free…………

The first time I heard The Train Song I thought “what a perfect text!” Since then I have played it for many groups of people and given out copies of the text. I said I felt my whole teaching is summed up in this song -and that everything you need to know is there. In fact I’d say Truth is summed up beautifully in just 1 line:

 “Don’t mistake the weather for the sky of your being.”

What more is there to say? Everything that comes and goes and changes is like the weather – always changing. The sky is always there behind the weather that passes over it. Just as your true being, your true Self, is always present behind all the thoughts and feelings that keep on coming and going.

Let’s take a look at parts of the text:

Just because the tracks are laid

Take a look at the activity of the mind and you will see that some of the tracks the mind follows have been there for a long time and are pretty solid! If someone is always thinking of the same thing we say he or she has a one track mind.

You don’t need to board the train

When you become aware of the situation, you no longer need to keep on going down these tracks in your mind but often there will be a strong pull to do so. It will feel natural to keep creating the same dramas in your mind. Don’t fight with the mind or make a problem of it – that just makes it stronger. The trick is to let these old dramas die out. You know what happens to a plant if you don’t water it – sooner or later it will die. A plant with strong roots will take longer time to die but sooner or later it will happen. The same with thoughts – don’t water them. By this I mean don’t nourish them by thinking them and following them.

 You are not your thoughts, you know
 So why get all caught up in where they lead
 You are who these thoughts are passing through – don’t you see?

Knowing you are not these thoughts can give a lot of relief. You are actually not anything that comes and goes or passes through you. Just let the mind be – don’t make it too important. Use it when you need it. It’s a tool in your tool box. Just because you have a hammer in your tool box doesn’t mean you have to go around hammering the walls all day! You hammer in a nail when it’s needed.

 Even when you’re feeling frightened
 Sad or hurt or unenlightened

Feeling sad, unenlightened, stupid or intelligent are just feelings that come and go. Just remember: Anything that comes and goes is not who you are! You are an eternal spiritual being having an experience of being human.

You can find the peace that underlies what passes by

Who you really are – this state of inner peace that rests deep inside of you, beyond all these comings and goings – remains untouched by anything that moves across the sky of your being.

 Don’t mistake the weather for the sky of your being

People ask what is spirituality and which spiritual teachings should they follow. All true spiritual teachings lead to this understanding. I would say this is the goal of spirituality. In Vedanta people learn to understand the difference between the true Self and the small personality self which is ruled very much by the mind. The Master Jesus told people to be still so they could know they are God – they are divine. This stillness is there waiting for you if you don’t take the chatter of the mind too seriously.

 Why mistake the weather for the sky

 Why indeed!

 Feelings rise and fall away – even those you wish would stay
 So why equate your sense of self with mood
 You are who emotion passes through

Remember that if there are feelings you are attached to because you enjoy them and think they are positive, you can get just as stuck in them as you would in so-called negative feelings. Some people try to get rid of things they don’t like and hang on to what they do like – they make the “positive” things significant. Making things too significant is one of the easiest ways to get stuck and to stay identified with the personality. Mind is mind – personality is personality, and the knowledge of who you really are arises from the still center deep within beyond identification with mind and personality.

 If destiny decides to strike some version of the script you like
 And make a melodrama of your endless cabaret
 You know you can still enjoy the play – yes you can
 If you’re still and you know how to play

 What wonderful lines!

 Just treat it like a mystery and view it from the balcony

This means watch what is happening – especially when life presents you with a big drama! Practise viewing your dramas from a distance and then you won’t get lost in them. Then you can easily let go of things that have been bothering you. Watch next time you are in a bad mood – its just a black cloud passing over the sky of your being. It will pass so try not to make a big fuss about it. Nothing can hurt or destroy this sky.

Laugh and cry and stomp your feet – but don’t believe a thing

Yes, it’s also OK to protest and be in the drama sometimes – this is the human part of you and no-one says you have to enjoy every single part of the drama. But if you are also able to see things from a distance you will understand:

 You are who these scenes are passing through – don’t you see?
 You are who this play is passing through
Be free…………