18.46 – Complement spirit with spirituality for complete success
“I will never give up; I will keep fighting till I succeed.” Those with such spirit who succeed against insurmountable odds often become heroes.
Fierce tenacity is laudable and even essential for achieving anything glorious.
To raise our drive to achieve to a higher level, indeed, to the highest level, Gita wisdom urges us to complement spirit with spirituality. That is, it calls upon us to channelize our fighting spirit into the ultimate cause – the cause of relishing and sharing everlasting spiritual bliss.
We are souls meant for eternal happiness. However, today’s materialistic culture seduces and reduces our definition of success to material success. So, even if we overcome herculean odds and succeed, we gain at best temporary happiness, for everything material is temporary.
If we want achievement to bring lasting fulfillment, we need to expand our definition of success to include the spiritual level. This doesn’t require us to renounce everything material; it simply requires that we subordinate and integrate the material with the spiritual. The Bhagavad-gita (18.46) urges us to reinvent our work as a form of worship of Krishna, the ultimate spiritual reality who is the source and sustainer of everything material.
Philosophical education and devotional meditation help us focus our head and heart on Krishna. This focus makes our mind calm and clear, thereby helping us bring out the best within us and do justice to our God-given abilities. Even if we don’t succeed, our strong Krishna-connection brings us solace and satisfaction. But because Krishna’s omnipotent grace empowers us, we triumph far more than what would have been possible by our most determined solitary struggles. And because we are engaged in actualizing Krishna’s omni-benevolent will, our achievements bring about the highest good for ourselves as well as everyone else. That is life’s complete and supreme success.
18.46 – By worship of the Lord, who is the source of all beings and who is all-pervading, a man can attain perfection through performing his own work.