Physical sensations cheat us of spiritual emotions
Suppose we are going to a place where a feast is on the menu, but someone takes us elsewhere, promising an even better feast. But what we get there is not a feast, but just some crumbs of unhealthy food.
Something similar happens to us when we strive to grow spiritually and raise our consciousness towards Krishna, but find it taken towards the sense objects that promise pleasure – immediate and immense pleasure at that. However, because our body’s capacity to enjoy is inescapably limited, the sensations that come from contacting the senses with sense objects are at best disappointingly brief.
Sometimes, we pursue physical sensations vicariously by visually consuming explicit images – a consumption that seems harmlessly titillating. But even if we neglect the harm done to the people who are thus dehumanized and objectified by being reduced to their contours, we can’t neglect the harm we do to our own consciousness. It gets degraded to lower, more depraved levels, wherein deeds that would have been earlier unthinkable become over time entertainable, enjoyable and even irresistible. Additionally, our determination to cultivate spiritual consciousness gets increasingly eroded, as the Bhagavad-gita (02.44) cautions. When our consciousness is thus materially abducted, it is not present at the spiritual level; so, it can’t relish the ineffable, immeasurable, inexhaustible fulfillment available through devotional absorption in Krishna.
Studying Gita wisdom helps us understand our spiritual identity as souls, beloved parts of Krishna, meant for a life of eternal fulfilling love with him. And bhakti-yoga gives us enchanting glimpses of these enriching higher emotions. Illumined by such spiritual insights and experiences, the reality registers within us that we are being duped of happiness in the name of happiness. Thus, our fighting spirit gets triggered, and we determinedly hold on to Krishna, firmly resisting physical sensations and increasingly relishing spiritual emotions.
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