What Would it Take

Illuminations Newsletter 21


On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate the quality of your spiritual practice last week?

If you answered less than 10 I have another question.

What would it take to make it a 10? 

Now write down everything you could do to make it a 10. Don’t think about what is practical, what you are able to do, etc., just write down what your spiritual practice would look like if it were a 10.

Now you know what you need to do.

Read over your list. How does it make you feel? Enlivened, challenged, scared, lazy, depressed, discouraged?

If you have negative emotions that’s ok. You don’t have to ignore them. Often they can help you realize how bad you feel by not taking your spiritual practices seriously. In any case, if you allow your emotions to deter you, it means you need to increase your determination. You can act in spite of your fear, in spite of your doubt. “Arise oh chastiser of the enemies?

“Victory belongs to the most persevering.” Napoleon

And it is said that the road to success is a toll road.

I can already hear your mind making excuses, saying, “but…………….”

 have an answer for your mind.

“A winner is someone who talks himself out of excuses.”

Here’s another one to help you through the difficulties

“Every noble work is at first impossible.”

So you roll up your sleeves and start to do more of the things you’ve known all along you should be doing and avoid doing some things you know have been hurting your spiritual life.

If down the road your enthusiasm wanes, remember this:

“Success is like a garden, It always needs weeding.”

And here’s another truism to push you when you are down.

“Winners do what losers don’t want to do.”

I can hear your mind saying (wow, it’s so loud I can hear it all the way in Alachua), “What if I don’t succeed?”

“If you are doing your best, you will not have to worry about failure.”

There is no failure in Krsna consciousness. The effort itself is the success.

“There is only one real failure in life that is possible, and that is not be true to the best we know.”

I know it is hard to change. You look at your list and you see it requires change to improve yourself – and that might make you uncomfortable. But you pay a price for staying the same, for remaining comfortable.

If reading this newsletter makes you uneasy, it’s probably because you know you need to change.

You have read this far and maybe you haven’t started this exercise yet. Maybe you are not planning to do it. If so, please answer the following question.

If you don’t do this exercise, what excuse will you tell yourself?

Now look at that excuse, (or list of excuses) very carefully. Study them, contemplate them. They are like gold and diamonds for you because here might be the very secret, the very core of what might be holding your practice back.

After each excuse, write the following, “to be more Krsna conscious,” For example, if your excuse is, “I don’t have time,” it should read, “I don’t have time to be more Krsna consciousness.” If your excuse is that I am afraid I will fail, your excuse will read, “I am afraid I will fail to be more Krsna conscious.” I think this will help you see your excuses in a different light – or should I say, in the light.

“The minute you start making excuses you have lost.”

Can you really afford to lose?

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