“The mind has its own reasons” may come as a surprise. But this is very true. While we may consciously reason and want to react in a certain way, when a situation presents itself we react instantaneously based on our internal conditioning. In other words we behave according to the reasoning of our mind.
We may read profound philosophy, be able to articulate noble ideas and thoughts. But in our daily lives when someone attacks our ego we react with anger. All our spirituality and philosophy simply goes up in smoke. We may cool down as an afterthought.
What this indicates to us is that intellectual understanding of spirituality is one thing but adherence to it in real life is completely different. It is not enough that we understand spirituality. We have to internalize it through constant practice.
We have to be able to remove the deep programming that is within us. We have to peel layer by layer this conditioning of ours. It is not easy to react with kindness when somebody is mean to us. Generations of conditioning will make us spew venom in retaliation to meanness. Is there a way to remove this conditioning?
In my opinion, spirituality like any other discipline requires years of practice and a constant unswerving devotion to God. We must through practice internalize good values in our lives.
It is only then will be able to be unruffled by “criticism or praise” as the Gita requires us. It is only then will be able to “love our enemy” as suggested by Christ.
But to achieve such a state in life is no easy task and requires discipline, and an in-depth understanding of our own mind. We must dispel all the cobwebs of evil in our mind.
Only then can we lead a truly virtuous life.