07.16: Breaks that are much more than brakes
The racehorse-pace of our contemporary lives makes many people feel the need for applying brakes, lest they break down. Such break-seekers often explore popular forms of spirituality such as yoga, meditation or devotional music from a purely utilitarian perspective. They dive into spirituality to get a refreshing break, just as they would dive into a swimming pool.
The Bhagavad-gita (7.16) anticipates their mentality. It states that the hope of relief from distress is one of the primary impetuses for people to explore the spiritual dimension of life. Today people probe the spiritual dimension to seek relief from stress, which is probably the most widespread form of distress dogging everyone – even successful people.
Such stress-relief seekers often see experience as the heart of spirituality and view philosophy as a needless baggage that weighs them down during the dive. However, if they study the philosophy of the Gita open-mindedly, they will find that it is not an unnecessary load, but a necessary compass. It will illuminate them regarding what the dive is about, why it offers relief and how they can dive deeper and relish greater relief.
If they dive deep enough, then they will discover a whole new world hidden underwater, concealed from the vision of those whose eyes are glued to worldly gains, strains and pains. That world is where all of us actually belong as spirit souls who are meant for a life of everlasting love with Krishna. When they get a taste of that life, then they realize that real spirituality is much more than a brake for slowing down material life. It is a permanent break from all worldly miseries and the end of their break from the Lord of the heart.