News / Updates — 05 February 2013

A US Harvard University study surveyed more than 2,200 volunteers about their thoughts and moods.

I was not at all surprised to read on BBC that “People spend half their waking hours daydreaming” (they live all around me), but was amazed that somebody recognized this phenomenon! A US Harvard University study conducted via iPhone reached more than 2,200 volunteers who downloaded an app which surveyed them about their thoughts and moods at random times day and night. After being contacted, the willing participants could select from a menu what they were doing, whether they were actually thinking about it and how happy or sad they felt. I found it quite wild that some participants were even prepared to answer while they were making love!

After gathering 250,000 survey results, the Harvard team concluded that this group of people spent 46.9% of their time awake with their minds wandering. Dr Matthew Killingsworth, one of the researchers, said: “Mind-wandering appears ubiquitous across all activities. This study shows that our mental lives are pervaded, to a remarkable degree, by the non-present.”

Osho says,

“Human mind as such is a daydreaming faculty. Unless you go beyond the mind, you will continue to daydream. Because the mind cannot exist in the present. It can either exist in the past or in the future. There is no way for the mind to exist in the present. To be in the present is to be without mind.

“…Daydreaming will continue unless you start tasting meditation. Unless you are nourished on meditation, you will go on starving and hankering for some food in the future. And you know the future is not going to bring it, because today was future just one day before. Yesterday it was future, and you were daydreaming about it. Now it is there. What is happening? Are you happy? Yesterday was also one day in the future. The past was all part of future one day, and it has slipped — and the future will also slip. You are befooling yourself in daydreaming.”

Osho, The Discipline of Transcendence, Vol. 2, Chapter 2, Question 1

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Read the entire part of Osho’s discourse…