“All humankind face contradictions between their true beliefs and their everyday actions ?”

Good and evil can we account for the incredible gap between the noble and the immoral? The answer lies in the ability to bridge the gap between one’s mind and heart. One may intellectually, even passionately, believe in a certain value or ideal. Yet, if this belief isn’t fully integrated into one’s heart, the seat of emotions, one’s actions may fall short of one’s ideals.
A recent news item told of an ethics lecturer, who, promptly after finishing his discourse, headed to a brothel using a stolen credit card.

The 19th century philosopher Rabbi Yisrael Salanter pithily stated that “the distance between the mind and the heart is greater than the distance between the ends of the earth.” Simply put…knowledge is one thing, putting it into action is quite another. The speeding driver knows that she is at greater risk for a serious accident, but that awareness only penetrates the heart after the accident takes place.

There are less dangerous ways to change the pattern of one’s behavior, to bridge that chasm between mind and heart, intellect and emotion. One way is through introspection. Spending a mere 15 minutes of one’s day in quietude, reviewing one’s overarching values and charting a course for tomorrow.

Bridging the Gap between Mind and Heart
By Jonathan D. Schick

About this entry