The mind gets us alone – and then gets us
During the Mahabharata war, Arjuna’s sixteen-year-old son, Abhimanyu, battles and bests the greatest Kaurava warriors. Unfortunately, on the thirteenth day of the war, the Kauravas scheme to have him trapped alone inside an unbreakable phalanx. Though he fights heroically, six of the foremost Kaurava warriors attack him simultaneously. And he falls.
We too are surrounded by six enemies – the Bhagavad-gita (15.07) cautions that the six senses, led by the mind, make life miserable for us. By tempting and torturing us with fantasies of pleasure, the mind drags us down to delusion and degradation. A primary way we open ourselves to the mind’s torment is through isolation.
When we are with others, especially other spiritually minded people aware of the mind’s wily ways, they can caution and protect us. Significantly, good association offers us more than caution – it offers satisfaction. When we feel connected with other devotees, the resulting fulfillment gives us the inspiration to lead a principle-centered life and resist the mind’s lures for unprincipled indulgences.
What if we can’t connect with the devotees around us? While respecting that association, we can seek like-minded inspiring spiritual association wherever we can find it.
What makes us vulnerable to the mind is not physical seclusion, but emotional isolation – when we feel lonely, uncared, unconnected.
Some services such as writing may require solitude, but if we are connected with Krishna, the ultimate object of our service, we will be safe.
If we connect wholeheartedly with Krishna through association and service whenever we have the opportunity to do so, Krishna will protect us when we have to be alone. We may be alone, but we won’t be lonely – because we will be with Krishna.
By vigilantly keeping ourselves in good association and constructive service, we can live connected with Krishna and protected from the mind.
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