Focus not on avoiding entanglement – focus on seeking engagement

When a person is traveling on a boat, they need to be aware of the dangers, but they needn’t become paranoid – otherwise, they will not be able to move anywhere, leave alone reach their destination.

We are all eternal souls who are presently caught in material existence. Gita wisdom compares material existence to an ocean. Our human body is like a boat for crossing over this ocean to the shore of eternal existence. How does the human body help us attain the eternal? By giving us the intelligence and the conscience to redirect our love from the temporary to the eternal, from the world and its objects to the source of the world: Krishna.

Yet as long as we exist at the material level of reality, we need to use our senses and act in the world for both our material survival and our spiritual growth. If we become paranoid about getting entangled in this world, we will not be able to function at all, neither materially nor spiritually. The Bhagavad-gita (02.59) cautions that the allure of worldly objects remains even when one refrains from indulgence. And that allure can drag down even a discerning person (02.60). Therefore, the Gita (02.61) urges us to fix our consciousness on Krishna. For thus fixing our consciousness, Gita wisdom offers an inclusive understanding of God: he doesn’t just exist beyond this world, but also permeates everything in this world. He is the attractive principle underlying everything attractive. And he is approachable with the simple devotion of the heart internally, and with our work externally.

When we focus on keeping ourselves engaged in his service instead of obsessing over avoiding entanglement, our consciousness becomes anchored in him, thereby enabling us to navigate the world’s stormy waters and ultimately attain his eternal abode.