Conviction is the fuel for our resolutions to fly from take-off to landing

We often make resolutions to conquer our lower passions such as selfishness, ego, greed, lust or anger. Most such resolutions for self-improvement often have a high mortality rate in the flight from conception to implementation. Why?

Often, the cause lies not in the flight, but in the takeoff. We frequently try to externalize our resolutions without internalizing them adequately. This means that we start attempting to do a thing externally without doing enough to convince ourselves internally why we should do it.

Usually, we start our internal journey for self-improvement because of an external stimulus: for example, hearing an electrifying talk, reading a stirring scriptural passage or having a moving interaction with a saint. Such an external stimulus may be enough to initiate our self-improvement journey. But to sustain the journey, we need the fuel of internal conviction. Unfortunately, while starting off, we neglect boosting our conviction adequately; we are too eager to take off.  This unwarranted haste causes our resolution to run out of fuel in mid-air and crash to a premature death.

To prevent this, we need to adopt the inside-out approach to self-improvement recommended by Gita wisdom. The Bhagavad-gita (03.43) indicates that intellectual conviction developed by conscious deliberation is critical for self-conquest. When an external stimulus inspires us to make a resolution, before takeoff we can seriously contemplate and systematically note the rationale for the resolution: we are not material bodies but souls; material passions block us from relishing spiritual happiness; no one else can overcome those passions for us; if we have to conquer them sometime, then why delay?

Thereafter, whenever our conviction-fuel meter starts showing a low, we can replenish it by meditating on those contemplations. By such replenishment, our flight will safely reach the destination of self-mastery.

Bhagavad Gita Chapter 03 Text 43

“Thus knowing oneself to be transcendental to the material senses, mind and intelligence, O mighty-armed Arjuna, one should steady the mind by deliberate spiritual intelligence [Krishna consciousness] and thus – by spiritual strength – conquer this insatiable enemy known as lust.”

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The new life outside begins with the new life inside
Subordinate the empirical and the rational to the scriptural

Author: Chaitanya Charan Das

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2 Comments

  1. Hare Krsna Prji,
    Please accept my humble obeisance,

    Prji just seeking a clarification on this. When you say that we have to be convinced, prji dont you think it is a long process which might take a long time to happen and our flight might not even start to take-off if we are waiting for the day our convictions will get internalized. On the contrary the external stimuli viz. talks, anecdotes, etc. do offer a hasty flight but at least we begin. So prji what should be a right balance of externalization and internalization

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