Updated: Oct 11, 2021
There is sometimes a misconception with meditation/presence that the purpose is to have no thoughts, stop thoughts from flowing, or to eliminate thoughts. This is not exactly what being free of thoughts means.
Thoughts do subside and minimize in meditation/presence, but being free of thoughts, or freedom from thoughts, has a different meaning.
Being free of thoughts means that you are no longer ruled by the thoughts. You see them for what they are and are no longer mindlessly directed by them. Thoughts will still be there, and they will appear in your awareness, and… you simply see them. What you will see are unconscious thoughts that have been impacting you without being aware of them. Notice these! Don't get involved with them, simply notice.
Freedom from thought is freedom from acting according to them, or even believing them! It’s simply an ongoing dialogue. You see you just follow them anymore. Their grip on the mind has been identified and now loosened.
Now, here’s the thing. When you no longer live according to all of your thoughts, life begins to change. However, the thoughts can kick up a bit of a fit sometimes and appear repeatedly like a little child having a tantrum.
Don’t give into them. Don’t fight them, just notice them. They may fall into a tantrum of sorts if no one is following what they want to happen but once they realize their reign is over, the energy of control begins to die out.
You are not required to accept or act on every thought. Thoughts are conditioned by society, the past, and memory.
Allow them to pass by; this is what is done in meditation. Notice all the wacky thoughts that pass by. See them for what they are, and you are free of them. This IS “free of thoughts.”