Why is it that I am constantly bothered by thoughts?
You are constantly bothered by thoughts because you are trying to meditate inside your mind. The very nature of the mind is to welcome thoughts-good thoughts, bad thoughts, divine thoughts, undivine thoughts. If you want to control the mind with your human will, then it will be like asking a monkey or a fly not to bother you. The very nature of a monkey is to bite and pinch; the very nature of a fly is to bother people.
The mind needs a superior power to keep it quiet. This superior power is the power of the soul. You have to bring to the fore the light of the soul from inside your heart. You are the possessor of two rooms: the heart-room and the mind-room. Right now the mind-room is obscure, unlit and impure; it is unwilling to open to the light. But the heart-room is always open to the light, for that is where the soul abides. Instead of concentrating on the mind, if you can concentrate and meditate on the reality that is inside the heart, then this reality will come forward.
If you stay in the mind-room all the time with the hope of illumining it from within, you will waste your time. If I want to light a candle, I must use a flame that is already burning, already illumined. The heart-room, fortunately, is already illumined. Once you are well-established in the heart, when you are surcharged with the soul's light, at that time you can enter into the mind-room to illumine the mind. But first you have to bring to the fore the soul's light, which is available most powerfully in the heart. The light of the soul will not torture or punish the mind. On the contrary, it will act like a most affectionate mother who feels that the imperfections other child are her own imperfections. The heart will offer its light to the mind in order to transform the nature of the mind.