Purification means changing the mind’s default programming
While practicing spiritual life and striving for purity, we may become disheartened: “Today’s culture fills me with so many impure desires. And my mind too goes off on so many impure fantasies. Will I ever become pure?”
Yes, definitely. In fact, purity is our eternal natural state. We are at our core pure – we are souls, who are eternal parts of the all-pure Supreme, Krishna. To reclaim our innate purity, we just need to change our mind’s default programming.
Suppose we have a computer with some undesirable default programming. We don’t need to blame or discard the computer. Nor do we need to berate ourselves or dismiss our chances of using it. We just need to get down to work for changing its programming. Similarly, even if we find ourselves getting caught in impure thoughts, we don’t need to blame the world, casting ourselves into the role of a helpless victim. Nor do we need to blame ourselves, burdening ourselves with unhelpful guilt. We just need to get down to work for changing the mind’s default programming. Indeed, the whole process of yoga is meant for bringing about this change in the mind. The Bhagavad-gita (06.15) assures that the mind becomes calmed by sustained yoga practice, thereby facilitating the seeker’s progress towards liberation.
Bhakti-yoga purifies the mind most expeditiously because it offers the most satisfying object for contemplation: the all-attractive, all-pure supreme spiritual reality, Krishna. Though our mind may wander during our devotional practices, still even intermittent focus on Krishna gives it glimpses of higher reality and deeper fulfillment thereof. By repeatedly experiencing this sublime reality, the mind gradually becomes inclined to focus on Krishna instead of worldly objects. When it accepts Krishna as its default source of happiness, purity becomes ours – and so does, in due course, serenity and ecstasy.
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