The mind will dissolve our resolve unless we evolve
Suppose we had a valuable object that was soluble in water. If kept in a humid environment, it will dissolve. To preserve any object, we need to know the appropriate environment for keeping it.
The same principle applies to our resolutions, especially our resolutions to stop doing self-destructive things. We often make such resolutions on hearing an inspiring talk, undergoing a jolting experience or some similar stimulation. Unfortunately, such resolves weaken and even die over time. Why? Because our resolves are present in the inner environment of our mind. And the mind is like a universal solvent capable of dissolving the strongest of resolutions.
We are innately pleasure-seeking beings. And we all are at various levels in our multi-life journey of spiritual evolution. According to our specific level, our mind conceives pleasure in particular terms. An alcoholic conceives pleasure in terms of alcohol; a soccer fan in terms of soccer; an egomaniac in terms of ego.
Circumstantially, we sometimes realize the futility of our habitual indulgence and resolve to give it up. However, our mind, being driven by its long-standing conceptions of pleasure, still keeps gravitating towards that indulgence. We need to change that conception by evolving spiritually. How? By learning to focus consistently on a higher reality.
Pertinently, the Bhagavad-gita (02.41) urges us to become one-pointed, lest our distractedness dissipate our determination. And Gita wisdom reveals the best object for one-pointed focus: Krishna, the all-pure, all-powerful, all-attractive supreme. He is the complete whole; and we are souls, his eternal parts. By focusing on him, we access a sublime pleasure that renders all other pleasures pale and stale in comparison. We can train ourselves to focus on Krishna by practicing bhakti-yoga.
By diligent bhakti-yoga practice, we elevate our conceptions of happiness, thereby making our resolutions more achievable, sustainable and even relishable.
Think it over:
- Why do our resolutions weaken over time?
- How is our level of spiritual evolution related to our search for happiness?
- How does bhakti-yoga practice boost our capacity to stick to our resolutions?
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