Focus not on life’s specific problems – focus on life’s universal purpose

During life, we all face various specific problems – our health may go down, our relationships may run through rough patches, our workload may become excessive. These problems need specific solutions, but we can’t let ourselves get consumed in seeking such specific solutions. Sometimes, solutions may elude us. Or some problems may have no solutions – they just need to be endured. Most exasperatingly, problems keep coming, just as waves keep coming in an ocean.

That’s why we need to look beyond life’s specific problems to life’s universal purpose. Ultimately, the purpose of everything in the world – indeed, the purpose of the world itself – is spiritual evolution. We are spiritual beings who are eternal parts of the supreme spiritual being, Krishna. We can fulfill our innermost longings for enduring life and love when we help our consciousness evolve from love for worldly things to love for our eternal Lord.

The Bhagavad-gita (18.61) states that Krishna accompanies us through material existence as our indwelling guide. Knowing his presence and prescience, we can turn our consciousness towards him and focus on our essential eternal function of serving him. When we surrender to him, he guides us towards our highest well-being (18.62).

Problems feel most problematic when they make us feel helpless and hopeless. When we focus on life’s universal purpose of spiritual evolution, then we see hope and help: hope because the door for spiritualizing our consciousness by remembering Krishna is always open, and help because Krishna is always available in his many manifestations to aid us in remembering him.

When we see life’s problems as impetuses for remembering Krishna, we can practice bhakti-yoga intensely and experience spiritual strength through absorption in him. Thereby, we can re-emerge, reassured and rejuvenated to face life’s problems more calmly, more wisely and more effectively.


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