Purification means to change our emotional center
Whenever a ball is hit anywhere, it moves. But when it is hit in the center, it moves the furthest.
Similarly, when worldly upheavals hit us, threatening various objects that we hold dear, we feel agitated. But when upheavals threaten our strongest attachments, we feel the most agitated. That object in relationship with which we experience our strongest emotions is our emotional center. Suppose cricket fans feel devastated when a particular player gets out. That player is their emotional center.
If we want to avoid unnecessary emotional turbulence and minimize unavoidable emotional turbulence, we need to relocate our emotional center from unstable objects to stable objects. The supremely stable object is Krishna. He is like a mountain that no blow can move. When he becomes our emotional center, we relish security and satisfaction – such sublime security that no problem can shatter us, and such sublime satisfaction that nothing else seems more desirable (Bhagavad-gita 06.22).
The process of bhakti-yoga is meant to make Krishna our emotional center. Bhakti practice purifies us of our various non-devotional attachments and intensifies our devotional attachment to the whole whose parts we are eternally (15.07). Devotional purification makes our emotional center coincide with the one who the center of all of existence: Krishna.
However, our emotional center doesn’t change significantly if we practice bhakti mechanically. Only when we invest our emotions in Krishna during our bhakti practices does our heart connect with him, thereby giving us glimpses of spiritual security and satisfaction. Those glimpses inspire us to progressively let go of our worldly attachments and to let our Lord penetrate and pervade our heart.
Eventually, when we let Krishna reign supreme in our heart, he becomes our emotional center. Thus living absorbed in him, we ultimately attain his eternal abode wherein we relish the supreme emotional fulfillment.
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