When a danger is less visible, it leaves us more vulnerable

If we are afflicted by some disease with visible symptoms such as TB, we would seek diagnosis and treatment. But suppose we are afflicted by some disease without any visible symptoms such as cancer. Externally, we might seem normal, but internally cancer might be wrecking our body. 

Less visible dangers leave us more vulnerable – this principle applies also to spiritual dangers. Major dangers on the spiritual path are attachments that divert us from Krishna and degrade us to sensuality, immorality, even perversity. 

Some attachments have visible effects. Suppose someone becomes an alcoholic. To drink alcohol, they need to physically go to particular places such as bars. After they become drunk, their behavior changes perceptibly – their mouth smells, they speak incoherently, they move unsteadily. 

But some attachments have hardly any visible effects. Suppose someone consumes inappropriate sensual images with their eyes. As these images are readily available by a few clicks on regularly used devices, they don’t need to physically go out of their way to indulge. Also, even if they are addicted to such visual consumption, their behavior may not change noticeably. But internally, it will damage their capacity for healthy relationships, distort their values and doom them spiritually.  

To detect diseases with no visible symptoms, we need regular medical checkups. Similarly, to detect indulgences whose dangers are less visible, we need to undergo regular spiritual checkups. Spiritual checkup means that we study scripture regularly and examine our consciousness critically. With the eye of spiritual knowledge (Bhagavad-gita 15.10), we can see how we are materially attached and where we are spiritually headed, thereby doing course correction as necessary. 

When we learn to periodically test our consciousness with the light of scripture, we can protect and promote our spiritual health. 


Think it over:

  • How are we medically more vulnerable to less visible diseases?
  • How are we spiritually more vulnerable to less visible attachments?
  • How can we detect and correct less visible attachments?



15.10 The foolish cannot understand how a living entity can quit his body, nor can they understand what sort of body he enjoys under the spell of the modes of nature. But one whose eyes are trained in knowledge can see all this.

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