Set your sight and don’t let phantoms deflect your flight
When a plane streaks through the sky, its speed is often impressive. It achieves that trajectory by setting its sight on the destination right at the start of the flight and repeatedly reorienting itself towards that destination.
Similarly, in our life-journey too, we need to set our sight when we start off on anything challenging. During our flight towards our goal, our mind distracts and disheartens us by painting various phantasmagoric scenarios: “What if this goes wrong? What if that goes wrong?”
Undoubtedly, it’s wise to prepare for probable problems. But it’s also wise to remember that things can go wrong anytime – not just when we attempt something special. We may be lying in apparent safety on our bed and the roof may cave us in or the earth may quake, open up and swallow us. Mediocrity is no guarantor of security.
In worrying about what may go wrong, we go wrong, for we fuel the mind’s dystopia. Pertinently, the Bhagavad-gita (18.35) cautions that a habitually morose mentality characterizes a perverse determination in the mode of ignorance.
The mind’s phantoms may haunt us with scary images of how things will go wrong if we become too serious about our bhakti practices. Actually, millions have practiced bhakti for millennia, and millions are practicing it even now. Everyone faces problems and so will we, even if we don’t practice bhakti. But bhakti empowers us to streak through this problem-filled material existence towards destination Krishna. And the Gita (10.10) assures that, during the bhakti flight, Krishna guides us to choose wisely. As and when problems come, we can always prayerfully reconsider our course and pragmatically reorient ourselves.
Therefore, without agonizing over the mind’s phantoms, we can strive to serve Krishna to the best of our capacity, thus flying steadily and swiftly towards him.
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