Use cleverness to counter corruptness, not cover corruptness

We all have a certain amount of cleverness and a certain amount of corruptness. Our cleverness enables us to go beyond the appearance of things to their substance. Our corruptness arises from the presence within our consciousness of corrupting impurities such as lust, greed and envy.  

How our cleverness and corruptness interact determines our destiny. If we use our cleverness to counter out corruptness, we can create a bright future for ourselves. How? By astutely seeing through the false promises of our impurities and resolutely refusing to pander to them. 

Unfortunately, these corrupting impurities can be so insidious as to subvert and even pervert our intelligence. The Bhagavad-gita (03.40) points to this scary possibility when it states that lust resides not just in our senses and mind, but also in our intelligence.  

When lust takes over our intelligence, we start using our cleverness to cover our corruptness. That means whenever we succumb to lust, we carefully cover our tracks so that we don’t get caught by others. We use our cleverness to put on a façade of purity while pandering to the impurity within us. When our cleverness thus becomes a servant of our corruptness, we doom ourselves to degradation, even self-destruction. 

Thankfully, we can nourish our intelligence by studying the Gita and use the resulting cleverness constructively. How? To remind ourselves that impure temptations are insidious; to alertly detect and reject sneaky temptations; to proactively protect ourselves from things that make us unnecessarily or excessively vulnerable to such temptations; and, most importantly, to situate ourselves on the spiritual platform (03.43) by diligently serving the supreme spiritual reality, Krishna, thus transcending temptation. 

With our cleverness constructively channeled, we can firmly counter and gradually conquer our inner corruptness, thereby attaining spiritual integrity and eternal liberty.  


Think it over:

  • How can cleverness counter corruptness?
  • How can corruptness misuse cleverness?
  • How can we use our cleverness constructively?



03.43 Thus knowing oneself to be transcendental to the material senses, mind and intelligence, O mighty-armed Arjuna, one should steady the mind by deliberate spiritual intelligence [Krishna consciousness] and thus – by spiritual strength – conquer this insatiable enemy known as lust.

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