18.76-77: Meditation is not a dulling duty, but a thrilling opportunity

by April 9, 2012

As spiritual seekers, we often begin meditation, especially mantra meditation, with enthusiasm and anticipation. However, with the passage of time, our mind starts coming in the way of our meditation with increasing frequency and ferocity. The mind due to the past deep-rooted memories of material indulgences is by default externally, materially directed. So even during meditation the mind often keeps our consciousness in the external, material realm, thereby making us miss out on the inner remembrance of Krishna. As this remembrance is central to the experiential joy of meditation, without it, meditation becomes an empty ritual. It starts appearing like a dulling duty that takes our time away from the interesting and important business of life. 

In marked contrast to this perceived bleakness of meditation, the Bhagavad-gita (18.76-77) gives us a glimpse of its richness by declaring that the remembrance of Krishna and his message brings thrills at every moment (hrishyami ca muhur muhuh). These verses, coming as they do towards the end of the Gita, indicate that comprehending the Gita’s message gives us a sound philosophical understanding of the glory and the beauty of Krishna. This understanding serves as our intellectual firepower to blow away the roadblocks created by the mind in the way of our meditation on Krishna. Of course, the understanding alone cannot give us the experience of Krishna, but it can give us the determination to fight off anhything that distracts us from that experience.

Once we start connecting with Krishna through loving remembrance, then we will find the taste of that remembrance so fulfilling and empowering that meditation will be seen for what it actually is: a thrilling opportunity to experience the ultimate joy.  

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