The mind treats us badly, yet we trust it madly
Suppose an investment agent treated us badly, being impolite and imprecise, even obnoxious and mendacious, we wouldn’t trust them repeatedly, at least not readily.
But unfortunately, when it comes to our inner agent – our mind – we trust its propositions irrationally. When the mind proposes that we do something, we invest our time, our energy, even our life at large, in that, even though those propositions often turn out to be unproductive, even counterproductive. It promises us pleasure through sensual indulgence, but delivers truckloads of trouble instead. And when we are in trouble, it promises us relief through further indulgence, which only increases our trouble.
Why do we trust the mind so much? Because the mind is inside us, we presume its ideas to be our ideas.
Gita wisdom helps us understand that inside our physical bodies, we as souls are present, but also present is our mind, which is separate from us. The Bhagavad-gita urges us to introspectively identify the mind when it states (06.05) that we need to elevate ourselves with the mind and not degrade ourselves.
And when we cultivate an important purpose to pursue in our life, that sense of direction helps us detect deviation. Whenever we start feeling ourselves being pushed in some other direction, we can understand that the inner force pushing us off-course is our mind and can work to correct it.
The most empowering direction for our life is the devotional direction – the direction towards Krishna, because he is the supremely stable reality. He is unaffected by the mind’s deviations and is capable of making us too unaffected by those deviations. And we as souls are his eternal parts, meant to function in loving harmony with him,
When we stay devotionally fixed and evaluate the mind’s propositions, we can act responsibly and effectively.