05.22: Go down the horror lane of memory
Our mind loves to go down the pleasure lane of memory – especially when those pleasures are materialistic. It glues itself to our past experiences of material pleasures – and further magnifies them by repeated replays, thereby inciting us to indulge in them again.
Thus, the pleasure lane is the most traveled lanes in the city of our memory. The mind also frequently travels down the misery lane, but only when the blame for that misery can be laid on someone else. Whenever we meet or even think of that person, the mind rushes down that lane and hyperactively re-enacts its blame game.
But when the misery was caused by our own misdeeds, the mind becomes curiously lethargic, even paralytic, to go down that horror lane. Additionally, when our reckless attempts for material enjoyment had resulted in frustration or humiliation, our mind practically never frequents that memory lane. In fact, the mind neither dwells on nor lets us dwell on any memory that demonstrates the miserable consequences of material indulgences.
When we strive to move forward on the devotion lane of life that leads to Krishna, material pleasures act as the most prominent roadblocks. The Bhagavad-gita (5.22) aids us as a roadblock-remover by declaring that material pleasures are the wombs of misery. Initially, this verse may seem to us as a mere theory – and a counter-factual theory at that. However, if we force ourselves to go regularly down the horror lane of memory, then we will realize that the Gita is succinctly stating a reality that we ourselves have repeatedly experienced.
Thus, paradoxically, by going back regularly on the horror lane of memory, we will get the impetus to go forward undistractedly on the devotion lane of life.