As long as we don’t mine under the mind, the mind will undermine us

Suppose someone is digging for buried gold. If they find iron coated to look like gold, they may celebrate prematurely and end up misled. 

A similar misunderstanding can undermine our quest for self-understanding. Genuine self-understanding is a treasure; it helps us know our real needs and, concomitantly, the way to real happiness. 

However, self-understanding can be elusive because our inner world is complex and multi-level. Within us, there is the mind, whose voice is often prominent, omnipresent and insistent. Beyond or under the mind is the soul, which is who we are essentially. Because in our inner world, the mind is much louder, we often misidentify with it. When we act to fulfill the mind’s promptings, what we get at best is fleeting gratification. Why? Because the things the mind craves for are temporary. In fact, even the mind’s cravings for them are temporary, for the mind is fickle. If we settle for such fleeting gratification instead of seeking enduring satisfaction available through authentic self-realization, we undermine ourselves. That’s why we need to mine under the mind means, to seek self-understanding beyond the mind’s promptings.

How can we mine under the mind? Through education and purification. Education in Gita wisdom equips us to separate gold-coated iron from gold, that is, to separate the mind’s feelings and cravings from the soul’s longings. Purification by connecting with all-pure Krishna cleanses the impure impressions in our mind, thereby weakening its misleading voice. 

When we thus mine under the mind, we realize ourselves to be souls, who are parts of the all-attractive Whole, Krishna. To gain this realization is to find gold in our inner world, thereby transcending the world’s dualities: heat-cold, pleasure-pain, honor-dishonor (Bhagavad-gita 06.07). 

By mining under the mind, we all can be enriched — eternally and ecstatically.

Think it over:

  • Why do we misidentify with the mind?
  • How does misidentifying with the mind undermine us?
  • How can we mine under the mind?

***

06.07 For one who has conquered the mind, the Supersoul is already reached, for he has attained tranquillity. To such a man happiness and distress, heat and cold, honor and dishonor are all the same.

 

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