Mental blocks block far more than road blocks

While driving, if we find a road block, we can’t just deny or wish it away – we need to practically deal with it, either remove it or find another way. Just as road blocks obstruct our physical movement, mental blocks obstruct our mental movement.

A major difference between the two blocks is that the mind is unceasingly restless. When blocked, it doesn’t stop thinking entirely – it just stops thinking constructively. It runs repeatedly along disempowering tracks of negative emotions such as indignation, frustration or depression. And with each iteration on this track, it imagines increasingly scary scenarios that leave us panicky, paranoid, paralyzed. Consequently, when mentally blocked, we can hardly do anything. This contrasts with road blocks, we can do something constructive, say, make pending phone calls. Thus, mental blocks block worse than road blocks.

At the Bhagavad-gita’s start, Arjuna finds himself mentally blocked. Confronted with a fratricidal war, he becomes overwhelmed with negative emotions. He sees inauspiciousness in all directions and finds his mind reeling in agony (01.30).

The Gita doesn’t deny Arjuna’s block or wish it away by telling him to stop thinking negatively and just cheer up. Instead, it offers an empowering spiritual light that revealed options invisible earlier. Gita wisdom explains that we are at our core spiritual beings, souls who are eternal parts of the whole, Krishna. He cherishes us so much that he accompanies us constantly in our heart. If we connect with him by cultivating his devotional remembrance, we get calmness and clarity. The conviction dawns within us that we are always meant to lovingly serve him, no matter what happens. With such spiritual confidence, our focus shifts from difficulties to possibilities.

When we concentrate on doing what we can in a mood of devotional service, our mental pathway becomes gradually and increasingly unblocked.

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