When things seem hopeless ….

When everything seems to be falling apart around us, we may become so disheartened as to feel like quitting. That’s what happened with Arjuna at the start of the Bhagavad-gita when he cast aside his bow in dejection (01.46).

Equipping him to face that situation, the Gita offered him a higher vision of how reality works ultimately under divine supervision (09.10). That means no matter how big the obstacles blocking our way, there’s always a divine purpose beckoning us. That purpose may involve us finding a way through the obstacle. Or it may be to realize that the obstacle itself is the way; it impels us to learn and grow in ways that nothing else could. 

How can we discern that purpose? Through a devotional service attitude. If we faithfully turn toward Krishna seeking guidance about how to face the situation, he will provide us insight from within to make the choices that will help us evolve (10.10). Such a service attitude is embodied in the question, “How can I serve Krishna now?” We are always parts of Krishna and he always has a part for us to play, no matter how grim the situation. 

When we appreciate  that divine purpose underlies every situation, that confident eagerness to serve helps us see beyond our impurities and insecurities that comprise a veil on reality. With the veil removed, we discern a way forward with increasing clarity. 

Therefore, rather than lamenting about how bad a situation is or even why God isn’t freeing us from that situation, we can focus on how we can serve where we are. And we will duly find a way ahead, as did Arjuna by the end of the Gita (18.73).

One-sentence summary:

Even when things seem hopeless, a divine purpose is always in front of us, waiting to be unveiled by our service attitude. 

Think it over:

  • How can we know that a purpose underlies every situation?
  • How can we remove the veil covering reality?
  • Are you facing any difficulty? How can you cultivate service attitude in that situation?


10.10: To those who are constantly devoted to serving Me with love, I give the understanding by which they can come to Me.

Author: Chaitanya Charan

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