When one becomes a disciple, the path to be followed is unknown to him. He has many mixed thoughts and feelings which he himself may not understand at the time, but they all belong to the life journey that he has chosen. The disciple's mind is a tricky friend. The thoughts that come can be misleading, thus the importance of detachment and control of the mind. The disciple needs to be able to 'let the mind roll' but at the same time not become involved, just to be aware of and a witness to his thoughts, knowing that they are only the play of the mind.
When the mind becomes negative as it often does, it is important for the disciple to be able to tune into his higher self, and know that the mind is only being mischievous. The thoughts of each and every disciple have their ups and downs. There are the times when every thing is 'smooth sailing' and he can understand and logically see what he is doing and the purpose for it. But what about the times when he is depressed and thinks that spiritual life is leading nowhere, that he is not progressing or getting any benefit out of what he is doing and would be better off doing something else. At such times the disciple needs to remind himself of his goal in life, otherwise he may follow temptation and once again find himself back on the path of worldly illusion.
As the disciple develops detachment and starts controlling the mind, rather than allowing it to control him, he becomes freer and happier. He has begun to let the higher being come into play. Once the disciple can detach himself from his thoughts, he is able to listen to his heart more easily. The heart is always ready to be felt, but too often we are not prepared to listen to it. If the disciple listens carefully, he is able to receive guidance from his heart. But how easily he gets caught up in the fast flowing emotions, failing to hear the 'heartbeat' of true feeling.
While traveling through life, the disciple experiences joys and sorrows, contentment and discontentment. Although he comes disheartened at times, feeling that life is against him, he realizes that without experiencing the heart's 'downers' he wouldn't be able to fully appreciate the underlying 'heart of gold' which is full of love and peace, promising permanent contentment.