Pride (P + Ride) takes us on a Perilous Ride
The Bhagavad-gita (16.04) states that pride is a characteristic of the ungodly.
Pride originates in the misconception that we permanently own the things that we only temporarily possess: talents and abilities, positions and possessions. Pride infatuates us with our temporary possessions and sends us off on a dangerous ego trip, being propelled by the imagination that we are superior to others and independent of Krishna.
The ride that pride takes us on is perilous from the beginning to the end. From the moment we become proud, we sentence ourselves to loneliness and insecurity. We feel lonely because our very desire for superiority alienates us from those around us as well as from Krishna. We feel insecure because of the fear that our sources of pride can and will be taken away from us at some time or the other. Hoping to get rid of the insecurity, we bury our fears by increasing our external bluff and bravado. Tragically, this only increases our loneliness, which in turn makes us more insecure, thereby activating a vicious cycle.
The ride of pride is even more perilous in the end. Why? Because when pride unceremoniously dumps us off, that is, when we lose our sources of pride, we wake up to the horrifying reality that we have hugely alienated ourselves from all those who loved us – including especially Krishna.
That’s why it’s best to never climb aboard the ride of pride – or to get off as soon as we realize what we have got into. Gita wisdom makes this easier by offering us a far better ride: the ride back to Krishna in the plane of devotional service. Once we experience the intimacy and the security of Krishna’s presence in our heart, pride can no longer allure us.
“Pride, arrogance, conceit, anger, harshness and ignorance – these qualities belong to those of demoniac nature, O son of Prtha.”