Crave not for what lies outside the fence – cultivate what lies inside it
Suppose we have a garden with the potential for beautiful flowers and delicious fruits. Still, we need to grow them. If instead we keep craving for things outside the garden and neglect the garden, we won’t be able to guard or even grow anything there.
A similar situation confronts us in our spiritual life, wherein we seek to cultivate inner joy. Scriptural rules of moral and spiritual regulation are like the fence. Often outside this fence, lots of pleasures seems to be there – sensual pleasures that militate against our morality and our spirituality. Frequently, we get allured by those pleasures. But if we get allured by them, then we get materially entangled and degraded.
The Bhagavad-gita (05.22) says that wise people know that sensual pleasures lead to misery, and therefore they stay away from it. And what do they do? The previous verse (05.21) states that they become detached from external pleasures and focus inwards – they resolve to seek happiness within and practice yoga to fix their consciousness in spiritual reality, ultimately on Krishna. Consequently, they reap the harvest of unlimited happiness.
This happiness is available for all of us if we stop craving for external pleasures, and develop the potential for love of Krishna present in our hearts.
If we practice the process of bhakti-yoga diligently, that practice serves as the watering of the seed of devotion. And when we follow the regulative principles, that is like building a protective fence around what we are cultivating. Unfortunately, amidst such practice, we let ourselves be caught by worldly cravings and neglect our inner cultivation.
If we let Gita wisdom remind us of what awaits us within, we can determinedly turn away from external cravings and gradually relish the supremely sweet fruit of love for Krishna.
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