Discreet Indiscretions?


When we succumb to some wrongdoings, if they are minor, we may downplay them by considering them mere indiscretions. And we may do those indiscretions discreetly so that others don’t come to know about them. Still, the danger in those indiscretions is not so much in what we  have done and how, but what is done by it to our mind. Due to the mental impressions created by that indulgence, our mind may stay stuck at that level of indulgence or may degrade to more brazen forms of indulgence. 

Every small indiscretion is like a snowball starting to roll down from the top of a mountain. Initially, a snowball is simply a snow pebble. And sometimes that snowball might just run across some obstacle and stop or get disintegrated. Sometimes it might be too small to move on for very long. But sometimes it might grow and start racing down the mountain as it keeps growing and growing. Till it eventually becomes a deadly force of nature, which can knock down a person or even break down the walls of a house. Once a snowball gains mass and momentum, stopping it may well be impossible for us. The snowballs that started off from the top of the mountain in the past didn’t reach down and cause any devastation, but that doesn’t mean future snowballs also won’t cause any devastation. The same applies to our indiscretions. 

Therefore, we need to recognize that even if our past indiscretions didn’t have any serious consequences, that doesn’t mean that future indiscretions won’t be similarly inconsequential. The Bhagavad-gita (02.62) cautions that a casual contemplation on a tempting object can unleash a craving so powerful that it devastates our intelligence and then degrades us. 

By knowing how dangerous such indulgence can be, we can avoid justifying indiscretions as discreet and inconsequential. 

One-sentence summary:

Indiscretions done discreetly are still indiscretions; they can still cause devastation. 

Think it over:

  • Why are discreet indiscretions not inconsequential? Explain with an example. 
  • What does the Gita caution about indiscretion?
  • Do you take any indiscretion casually? How can you rectify it? 


02.62: While contemplating the objects of the senses, a person develops attachment for them, and from such attachment lust develops, and from lust anger arises.

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1 Comment

  1. Hare Krishna Prji, dandavat pranam. Thank you for the very wonderful reminder through this article. I am very much grateful and I pray for your blessings that I can imbibe the essence in my life.

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