When the mind makes the irrational seem rational, catch it in its irrationality
When we do something irrational, we may wonder, “Why did I do such a thing?”
Because the mind may have stupefied us by using some specious, often almost subconscious, argumentation.
For example, the mind may prompt us to do something wrong by arguing, “Everyone is doing it.” If our child used that argument saying, “I want to ride superfast on my bike because all my friends do it,” we would forbid, replying, “That doesn’t make it safe.” Similarly, just because everyone does something doesn’t make it right. Yet when our own mind makes the argument, we sometimes tamely acquiesce. Thus, the mind often uses flimsy arguments to make the irrational seem rational.
We can objectively retrace the trajectory of our fall by recollecting our thoughts when we were clear-headed and when we started becoming fuzzyheaded.
Whenever we fall for the mind, we can objectively retrace the trajectory of our fall by recollecting our thoughts when we were clear-headed and when we started becoming fuzzyheaded. By noting what caused the shift in our thoughts, we can identify what argument the mind used to rationalize the irrational. Then we can prepare scriptural and logical counter-arguments to expose the fallacies in its argument – and keep those counter-arguments readily available always. Thus we apply the Bhagavad-gita’s instruction (06.25) to restrain the mind with the intelligence.
Next time when the mind starts rationalizing the irrational, we can catch it in its irrationality with our prepared counter-arguments. This will not only protect us from relapse, but will also increase our ability to catch the mind.
Of course, for ultimately controlling the mind, we need to adopt the supreme scriptural guideline: absorb yourself in Krishna through devotional service. And our training in catching the mind’s irrationality will help us expose it when it tries to irrationally dishearten us in our devotion. By thus practicing bhakti consistently, we will gradually convert the mind and attain Krishna’s eternal shelter.
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