A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Have

Three Rocks

NAVAJO LAKE SP, NM—On Tuesday, I left Heron Lake and drove westward to Navajo Lake. When I arrived, a strange kind of burned chemical smell seemed to be coming from the engine compartment. I looked, but didn’t see anything unusual under there.

I slept fitfully that night.

More below the break (huh?).

A mind is a terrible thing to have. At night, when a problem presents itself, when there is nothing to distract it, nothing for it to focus on, the mind naturally focuses on the worse case scenario: “The transmission is going to need to be replaced. It’s going to die on me during the 30 mile trek into town. I’ll be stranded and need a tow. The repairs are going to cost more than the truck is worth….”

In the morning, with the light of day, it was easy to escape the mind, I’d just focus on the Present: The trees, a chipmunk scurrying among the boulders, vultures soaring overhead, a mother duck and her chicks bobbing along the shore….

I didn’t do anything with the truck that day. Didn’t go anywhere. I just wanted to use the opportunity to observe the difference with what was real—Nature in all Her glory—and what was in my head—possible transmission problems.

This morning, I jumped in the truck and drove the 35 miles to the town of Aztec. No break down, no smells, no problems. For luck, I dumped a bottle of Lucas Transmission Fix down the filler tube (thanks Doug), drove on into Farmington, picked up some supplies and drove back to camp.

Round trip: 100 miles. No unusual smells.

Is there a problem still? Who knows. Maybe it was another squirrel’s nest burning up, but the fitful night was a waste of time and energy.

A mind is a terrible thing to have. Seriously. Don’t take anything it has to say too seriously.

Posted in Reflections
12 comments on “A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Have
  1. Laurie Thiboutot says:

    All too familiar to me Wayne! My mind works against me every minute of every day! (

  2. Doug in Powell says:

    A mind is a terrible thing to have.

    Don’t take anything it has to say too seriously.

    my new motto :o)

  3. The Artist still known as Andy says:

    With reference to a previous post of yours concerning transition after death, what very interests me is how to stay staying aware and focused when there is no body, nor any time structure to anchor by. I gather that the Tibetan buddhists work on such techniques, but personally know nothing about it. Any pointers gratefully received.

  4. Wayne (Wirs) says:

    @Laurie: Practice, Practice, Practice. :)

    @Doug: Good motto!

    @Andy: While I’m not a big advocate of meditation, this is one area where it can help – to learn to SEE your thoughts and not BE your thoughts. Practice, Practice, Practice. :)

  5. Randy Vining says:

    A WORRIED mind is a terrible thing to have.

  6. Jack mcmanigal says:

    Wayne, change the transmission fluid and filter and you should be fine! Peace.

  7. Keith Edwards says:

    I love you Wayne an enlightened human no doubt but still a grub like the rest of us. WE are all one. Thanks, hey and I am liking the diet, grits and gravy every single morning, turkey burger for lunch and some kind of chinese noodles or cereal for dinner. Ice tea all around. Pretty much sticking to it too.

  8. Wayne (Wirs) says:

    @Randy: See, you’re taking the mind too seriously. :)

    @Jack: Thanks. It could probably use it.

    @Keith: Eat what you want and lose weight. Who’d have thought? The Carefree Diet (shameless plug).

  9. arthur says:

    re your possible transmission trouble,first pull the dip stick and see what the fluid looks like on the stick. If it’s red in colour and has a bit of a sweet smell your transmission is probably fine. If it’s just dark and dirty looking a change of oil is probably what you need. On the other hand if the oil is dirty looking and it has a pungent odour to it , it is probably burnt and further analysis would be a good idea. It could save you a lot of money to fix it before it quits altogether, if that’s what it needs. You know the saying, trust in God but tie your camel. Namaste

  10. arthur says:

    Forgot to mention, if you pull a trailer a transmission temp gauge is a good idea.

  11. Wayne (Wirs) says:

    Thanks Arthur. Useful info.

  12. Arthur murray says:

    I read some where that the purpose of the mind going round and round with things is to drive us (me) to exhaustion .Well I can say for myself it’s working. I guess what is suppose to happen then is that we ( I) will be ready to awaken. I hope it happens soon!

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