CTRL+ALT+DELETE: A 3-Step Solution to Every Problem

June 9, 2010 § 7 Comments

The other day, I was teaching my Wednesday evening yoga class and a complex discussion came about, which led me to create a normal, day-to-day analogy to make things simple. Remember, being a walking yogi means: be simple, be practical and ultimately, be free, both figuratively and symbolically. How do you make the best sense out of things that are complex? Well, sometimes you use an analogy that makes use of everyday terms, things, and places, which help you to explain your point. And that is just what I did: I used mundane terms to explain the profound infinity, which could then be easily grasped by the logical brain. Consider that your brain is a computer; we normally use our “computer” in everyday life, but we may not always connect the dots to understand the depths of wisdom that become available through simple explanation.

But, let’s get even simpler. When you are running a couple of programs on your computer and it freezes up due to a lack of memory or other malfunction, what is it that you do at that time to unfreeze? What is the quickest way to release that freeze? Many times, for the PC users, the command to use is “CTRL+ALT+DLT”. (I do not use MAC and so you may have to make up your own analogy.) This command is the quickest and simplest way to get out of that jam. Now you might wonder a bit, “Hum, what does this have to do with infinity?” Wait now, do not rush. I am about to explain.

In the same way that we have computer problems, we have problems and issues in our daily life. Some we face head-on, resolve them quickly, and move on; other issues may take years to resolve—if we are lucky—or else many times we die without solving them. Can you think of anything difficult that is plaguing you? Have you tried to solve the issue at hand? What happened, in reality? Did you end up solving it, did you create more trouble, or did it never get resolved? Ponder on it a bit, analyze it, and see if you can conclude. You might wonder: “He is avoiding an explanation!” Be patient, my dear, be patient. I am about to resolve the situation that you just relived due to your memory-fest. This term, “memory-fest” begs a question: “Is it really a memory-fest or an infatuation or addiction to our memory?” Think about it; it could be my next blog. What do you think? Leave comments on my blog site, please.

To continue, if you have an issue and it is hard to resolve, there are three things I would like you to remember and ask yourself:

1. How much control do I have in this situation?
2. Can I alter the situation? What can I do to alter this situation?
3. If nothing can be done, can I “delete” or completely let go off it, wipe it out of my memory permanently?

Now, remember, we are trying to simplify, so try not to complicate this further. One way to understand simplifying problems is through an example that affects millions of people worldwide. Let us say you have just been diagnosed with diabetes—you have a problem in your hand. Your first reaction could be “why me?” or “what do I do now?”, and there may be many other reactions you could have. Instead of panicking, which may seem like the right thing to do at that time, get back to the three-step solution that was just mentioned above and start working on it right away. Remember, whatever you focus on magnifies. It will become bigger than it is until that is all you can see. So why not focus on solving the situation rather than worrying sick about it?

1. What kind of control do I have? You may think, “Well, I have a good doctor who caught this ailment early on. She is an expert and I can rely on her expertise. I have a spouse or a life partner who understands the situation and is willing to help in any way possible. I have many friends who are sympathetic to my situation and are standing by to help.” Wow! What a great start! Do you have enough control? Are you alone in this?

Second scenario would be: “Oh my God! What am I going to do? I have to take insulin shots every day. It is going to cost me so much. What will happen to my hands and skin by poking those needles? How can I possibly let go off ice cream? I love ice cream.”

Think hard: How much control do you have?

2. What can I do to alter this situation? That is your next priority, next goal, and next target. “Well, I will take my insulin religiously to bring the symptoms under ‘control’.” (A brief word about control: in this situation, you are in control, and the insulin is an extension of that control—you are not completely dependent on it. If you depend on something, you have already lost some control. Mind you, I am not preaching you to become “control freak” but you have to get some handle on it.) You may brainstorm other ways you can alter the situation. “I love to eat, but now I am going to be strict with my diet. I will research, read and discuss more about possible cures; I will talk to a few of my relatives who are managing their own diabetes and alter my situation to go in the positive direction.”

Second Scenario could be,”Well, I know I am not supposed to eat ice cream…I will cut back a little, and then take my insulin shots to avoid raised sugar levels in my blood. I don’t think there is anything else I can do. I am not an expert on diabetes and I will let my doctors handle it. What else can I do?”

Do you see the difference between these two scenarios?

Think hard: If you bring enough control, alteration is a logical sequence that follows.

3. Can I “delete” this issue; can I cure this malady? That is a great way forward. You may determine, “If I implement a regular exercise regimen, undergo strict dietary control and use stress management techniques like yoga, breathing, relaxation and meditation, I believe I can cure it. If I learn more about herbs and how they can bring me back to ‘norm’ then I will be in a great shape to fight this malady off. Henceforth, I will take an oath that I am not sick, but my body is; it is my instrument and I need to sharpen my tool so that I can function optimally on a daily basis.”

Second scenario might look like this: “I have no control over it. I just know a little about it. My doctors are telling me that there are no possible cures for this kind of malady and I am to live with some kind of diet regimen and insulin shots for the rest of my life, or I will die of many complications, including heart problems.”

Think hard: Once you have taken a conscious decision to cure the issue at hand, that awareness itself is a self-propelling, self-guiding force to eliminate the myriad of issues plaguing this humanity.

Now, this is just a random example that I chose to demonstrate my point. Things could be quite different when it comes to your life. But you get the point. It all depends on how you think about your situation and how you utilize the simple facts of life to eliminate an issue or malady in a proper, systematic way—without becoming sick to the core!

“Wait a minute,” you might just say, “What does all this have to do with infinity? What in the world are you talking about?” Funny, isn’t it? Well, go back to the computer analogy. If you press the CTRL + ALT+ DLT keys simultaneously, what happens then? Windows Task Manager opens and you can eliminate, or “End Task”, the application which is causing the freeze; all of this effectively frees up the Operating System, or say OS. In the science of spirituality, OS could be simply “Operating Self”, which is your being or individual soul or self. If you use self-propelling, self-guiding conscious force to eliminate myriad distraction we go through each lifetime, do you think you might reach APS, or should I say, “ALL Pervading Self“? Do you think you can become one with infinity, the Almighty or APS?

Think hard: Have you read the YOGA SUTRAS lately?


§ 7 Responses to CTRL+ALT+DELETE: A 3-Step Solution to Every Problem

  • Allison says:

    I thought this blog was a wonderful topic — a practical, systematic method to approaching “problems”. It seems as if part of Blog 1 was taken and expanded on here, to give real practical tools for how to resolve issues head-on. And it seemed great that not only were you saying problems should be reduced to simplicity, but you provided a simple analogy for thinking about it (computer/CTRL+ALT+DLT) and also a simple example for how to apply the 3-step solution to a real-world problem.

    The breaking the problem-solving into 3 easy steps and adding “Think hard” for each step made the blog very user-friendly and clear to me.

    What a fun and practical introductory transition into the Infinite and the Yoga Sutras! I have been reading Swami Rama’s “The Royal Path” as part of training, and it is such a practical instruction that brings me joy to read. This blog is like that. It is enjoyable to witness a seemingly complex problem get solved with simple actions. And without saying so, it underlines the huge importance of discipline.

  • Allison, you hit the nail on the head when you mentioned the simplicity and the practicality of using this blog, resolving the issues or problems at hand while taking a responsible action or should I say being responsible for every single action you take! This blog site is just not an intellectual exercise but being responsible and taking action step by step, either taking support from the blogs themselves or devising your own system based on the knowledge you have achieved over the years. Using this blog as a reference point or a as a frame work might just make things simple for the user. Remember, yoga is skillful action as well.

  • RL says:

    We face many different events that have the ability to plague us. How we choose to handle them is up to us.

    We can just let the event engulf and consume us, or we can try to find a way to take back that control.

    In The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, Book 2-1, Accepting pain as help for purification. Sri Swami Satchidananda explained that by accepting all pains that come to us, we can make our mind steady and strong.

    Sri Swami Satchidananda gave a beautiful analogy. He explained with the image of a horses drawn chariot. Our body is the chariot, our intelligence is the charioteer, our mind is the reins, our senses are the horses, and The Self is the passenger. We must have control of our senses.

    How we react to things is really how our senses react to things and the label we put on them. If we feel “pain or pleasure” it is because that is what we called it.

    But we must also be careful not to become obsessed with control, because obsession is out of control.

    Therefore we must reread your previous blogs, To Experience or Not To, Using the Not Now Mantra, and We Are Catalogue of Habit Patterns, in order to gain control, alternate, and delete those unwanted events that keep plaguing us.

  • As I had mentioned above, “Mind you, I am not preaching you to become ‘control freak’, but you have to get some handle on it.”, you have to get some handle on anything that comes across you, which is labeled as a “problem” or a “situation” or what have you. Those who have an obsession and want to control things, they are trying to control anything and everything, every situation or at least what interests them. Here we learn to control the situation at hand, mitigate the loss, take preventative action or eliminate altogether the situation causing the distress, so we can witness our Higher Self or at least be more functional. Does it require skill? You better believe it! However, skills develop when you take an action. You cannot keep on worrying about things, situations and problems without taking a proper action. Remember, Yogah Karmasu Kaushalam, yoga is skillful action as I had mentioned in a previous comment.
    However, your Suggestion Ruby, in reading other blogs on this blog site and develop some skill set is excellent. I hope all those who read it, apply it.

  • RL says:

    Performing skillful actions with non-attachment to the fruits or results of these actions are very hard to do. So, how do we know if what we are doing is non-attachment, renunciation, or escapism?

  • That is a great question, Ruby. Let us say, if you have kids, and they are pretty young, not able to take care for themselves then mostly you have to take care of them until they grow up and become independent of you. How many times you would have caught your mind thinking, “Right now you are little and cannot take care of yourself. I am feeding you, bathing you, clothing you and also doing a whole lot more than I can even memorize. However, when you grow up, I am going to count each action, and then I will ask you to pay me back for each action I have taken for you.”
    Do you think any genuine mother on this earth would do that? If the answer is no then I might ask why not? The act of bringing children on this planet itself, how seemingly, selfish maybe, in my eyes it is one of the rare acts that is performed with the non-attachment as a back drop while mother is going through an agonizing experience. Only mother can do that in my eyes and that reason alone is sufficient enough to respect, honor and cherish her in life and in death, so we can learn and grow to perform similar acts based on our awareness and inclinations. I think for this blog site this is a pretty short but succinct answer. What do you think?

  • RL says:

    Sometime it is so hard to see if the path we choose to take is the right one.

    How do we know if we are doing something because we believe is better for that other person, or to make us feel better? The line is so faint, sometime it is hard to distinguish.

    On a lighter note, as parents we do not ask for money from our children as they become independent. But we do expect them to help out in many areas. So, does that consider payments too?

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