Verse 3.42: The working senses are superior to dull matter; mind is higher than the senses; intelligence is still higher than the mind; and he [the soul] is even higher than the intelligence.
We live in a world of contradictions. Although we are supposedly more connected than ever due to cell phones, internet, social media and so many other tools, many are noticing that their relationships are getting increasingly impersonal. Despite advances in technology that are supposed to be making our lives easier, we find more people out of work these days due to those very systems and instruments. Maybe the most frighting of all - in spite of so much knowledge available out there, it seems that many people are more confused than ever...about everything!
Living with confusion and uncertainty without proper guidance or a path inevitably leads to looking for shelter in all the wrong places. It's at these times that mass consumerism and lust can easily sway our troubled hearts.
It's so easy to take shelter in the senses as they serve to distract us from what many of us feel inside:
Our heart is crying out for more.
There lies the problem for many. What is that "more" that the heart is crying out for? If we don't know, we continue to try to find "it" in so many different ways. For some, it may mean finding new and novel ways to give pleasure to the senses. Frustrated or bored with that, it could mean turning to philosophy or speculation and trying to engage and stimulate the intellect. If that fails, then others may turn to philanthropy or even solitude.
To no avail, many who face this emptiness try to hide it under the cover of being busy, yet never really feel satisfied. But we learn to play the game and put on a happy face, right?
Well...for those who are tired of this useless game, a solution is given today. However, it requires a shift in consciousness to say:
"I'm done with living with that gnawing feeling of emptiness and frustration that I've pushed into the recesses of my heart. I'm also done with deluding myself that temporary happiness is enough and am ready to recognize that I deserve eternal happiness and will do what it takes to get it!"
That shift in consciousness will allow us to make another crucial change. Our energy tends to be focused on the senses and how to satisfy them. When we transfer our attention to the intelligence and feed that, a whole new world opens up. By feeding the intelligence with spiritual knowledge, like that given in the Gita, we start to fill in a much needed gap.
Remember that proper guide or path that may be missing? Here it is. The intelligence is supposed to act as the guide by taking shelter of an empowered teacher and being absorbed in the wisdom of bhakti yoga (i.e. the process to connect through love). This way, if the mind tries to take us down our usual path of trying to get a quick fix, the intelligence can actually step in and provide the proper guidance and support that needed to get out of that vicious cycle; furthermore, it will help us on our quest to achieve eternal happiness.
Ultimately, the only thing that will make us happy is genuine and meaningful soul-soul connections. The soul craves relationship, love and service. When it is covered by lust it mistakenly thinks it can get that by ignoring the one person who can give all of that - the Divine.
The path is clear. All it requires is a change of consciousness. The question remains - do you want eternal happiness and are you ready to do what it takes to get it?