One soul inspired is better than a thousand souls impressed - ISKCON Kolkata

When we apply the Bhagavad-gita and become positively transformed, we feel inspired to share its wisdom with others. But while sharing thus, we frequently find that people are not much interested; they are more impressed by materially talented speakers even if they lack spiritual substance.

If people’s lackluster response disheartens us, we can remember the Gita statement that spiritual interest is rare (07.03). So, their spiritual apathy vindicates the Gita.

A word of caution: that not many will be interested doesn’t mean that we needn’t try to stimulate interest; we should try, to the best of our capacity. Significantly, to activate people’s spiritual interest, we need to focus more on inspiring them than on impressing them. When a talk impresses, people feel, “How brilliant this speaker is!” But when a talk inspires, people feel hope and confidence: “I can apply this message and become a better person.”

What impresses people is seeing some special material talent. But what inspires them is encountering authentic spirituality – spiritual consciousness infused with conviction, commitment and concern. Material talents dazzle the mind, whereas spiritual consciousness touches the heart. If we have some talents, we can impress others. But even if we don’t have any special talent, we can still touch their hearts. How? By practicing bhakti-yoga diligently. Thereby, we connect with Krishna, who is present in our hearts as well as in others’ hearts. Seeing our genuine concern for others, he becomes pleased and moves them from within, thus making us channels of inspiration.

Of course, if we can both impress and inspire, that’s especially powerful: we can attract others’ minds and hearts both. But ultimately, if we aspire to be agents of enduring change, we need to focus more on inspiring than on impressing – one soul inspired is better than a thousand souls impressed.


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