03.32: Krishna is attained not by playing with the intellect but by striving with the will

by February 8, 2012

The Bhagavad-gita (3.32) indicates that even the knowledgeable fail to attain Krishna if their desires are misdirected towards imitating him instead of assisting him.

Many people, especially intellectuals, use knowledge, even scriptural knowledge as a play-toy for their intellect. Playing with the intellect involves memorizing, analyzing, synthesizing and verbalizing information. Often, such intellectual play is motivated by the vain (pun intended) desire of exhibiting one’s learning and thereby impressing others and converting them to one’s point of view. Even if such an intellectual performance is dazzling for others, it can be self-defeating if it inflames the very desire that it is meant to extinguish: the desire to be an independent center of attraction as a competitor to Krishna.

The purpose of acquiring scriptural knowledge is to increase our attraction for Krishna, not our competition with Krishna. What increases our attraction for Krishna is not just acquiring the knowledge, but applying it to transform our desires from selfishness to selflessness, from I-centeredness to God-centeredness, from decoration of our ego to glorification of our Lord. Bringing about this transformation of desires requires enormous exertion of the will to beat down the selfish desires and to prop up the selfless desires.

Those who are game for this exertion of the will can attain a fruit that cannot be obtained by the most brilliant intellectual game-play: the fruit of love for Krishna that brings everlasting happiness


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  • Santanu Saikia
    February 15, 2012 at 8:30 am

    You are always here with us to guide us , to show us the stepping-stone on the thorny pathways . Thank you .

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