Are we devaluing our life?
If someone devalued our life, treating it as if it were worthless, we would oppose, and oppose fiercely. Yet we often unwittingly undervalue the resource necessary to do anything valuable with our life. That resource is our consciousness.
Why is our consciousness so valuable? Because every area of our life requires an alert and adept consciousness. For example, when our consciousness is distracted, we may misplace our money or we may waste our time.
How do we undervalue our consciousness? By failing to notice it and thereby failing to notice what is entering into it. We indiscriminately let our consciousness become filled with stray thoughts, negative emotions, self-destructive cravings. And then we wonder why we are distracted, discouraged, dysfunctional.
Suppose we had a home workspace. Therein, we would arrange things carefully so that we could work efficiently. And we would protect things there from being disrupted. Our consciousness is like our inner workspace. Unfortunately, we don’t do much to protect our consciousness from disruptive stimuli. And the resulting disruption damages not just our work life, but our entire life: our family life, our social life, our spiritual life. Indeed, unfocused consciousness means wasted life.
The Bhagavad-gita’s setting (01.46) demonstrates how when Arjuna’s consciousness became filled with confusion, indecision and lamentation, it paralyzed him, nearly sabotaging the biggest moment of his life. Fortunately, the Gita’s message helped him to value his consciousness and fill it with the most valuable content — timeless wisdom and enduring purpose. And that enriched consciousness empowered him to act effectively, heroically, victoriously (18.78).
By studying the Gita, we all can learn to value our consciousness better. When we thus appreciate and enrich our consciousness, we all can use our life for doing the things of maximum value.
If we undervalue our consciousness, we devalue our life; valuing our life begins with valuing our consciousness.
Think it over:
- How do we devalue our life?
- Why is our consciousness so important? Explain with a metaphor.
- How can you better value your consciousness by regulating what comes into it?
01.46: Sanjaya said: Arjuna, having thus spoken on the battlefield, cast aside his bow and arrows and sat down on the chariot, his mind overwhelmed with grief.
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