It takes great intelligence to recognize that intelligence is not great enough

It takes great intelligence to recognize that intelligence is not great enough

Some people feel that the path of bhakti is too simplistic: “If we just do what Krishna tells, then how are we doing justice to our intelligence? It is Krishna who has given us intelligence. Wouldn’t he want us to use it properly?”

Yes, Krishna wants us to use our intelligence not just properly but perfectly. And the perfection of intelligence includes its capacity to recognize its limitation: that it is not great enough to be omniscient.

By our intelligence, we can appreciate the majesty and harmony of the natural world undisrupted by human intrusion. Thereby we can sense the existence of an intelligence far better than our own – the supreme intelligence of Krishna.

That supreme intelligence complements our human intelligence by providing a source of perennial wisdom: scripture. By using scripture to contemplate the nature of existence, we understand that just as Krishna has a position and a plan for everything, he has a position and a plan for us too. When we intelligently harmonize ourselves with that position and plan, we learn to love Krishna and relish life to its fullest. Doing anything else keeps us in disharmony and comprises underuse of our intelligence.

Unfortunately, such underuse of intelligence seems to be its best use when the ego hijacks it. The ego misleads us into believing that the more we live independent of Krishna, the more intelligent we are. By ascribing independence and omnipotence to the intelligence, the ego fancies itself as the supreme.

It requires great intelligence to see through the sinister shenanigans of the ego and realize the glory of harmonizing with the supreme intelligence. The Bhagavad-gita (07.19) declares that the wise who surrender to Krishna are extremely rare.

By following their illustrious footsteps, we do the highest justice to our intelligence.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 07 Text 19

Explanation of article:

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The assumption of responsibility in our inner life begins with challenging our assumption about our inner life
Bhakti transforms our solitary struggle with the mind into a cooperative conquest

Author: Chaitanya Charan Das

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