The heart-and-mind interplay in New Year resolutions


Why are New Year resolutions mostly unfulfilled? Because people sorely lack determination or the firmness of purpose even as they wallow in life’s negativities—e.g., hatred, envy, jealousy, greed, pride. Yet fulfilled New Year resolutions guarantee a vibrant life through the year and the years to come.

We welcome the new year with sumptuous food, drinking sprees and boisterous noise by exploding firecrackers, banging kettles, or playing drums and sound systems loud, among other ways—or even by firing guns, unmindful of the danger of killing innocent victims.

Though for a brief moment we pray, thanking the Good Lord for the blessings received. We even reconcile with enemies—an act of Christian virtue that is hard to sustain through the following days and months.

Galatians 5:22 states: “… the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, faith.” Hence, the best way really to fulfill our promises is to love one another; we must let the fruit of the Spirit prevail upon us—that is, by religiously practicing positive thinking. Convert challenges into opportunities and you will laugh at yourself even if you lay prostrate on the ground. But you must rise up,  never to fall down again because you have learned your lessons.

Remember that Jesus Christ died for our sins, thereby redeeming us. Why don’t we follow in His footsteps? It is not a matter of leading but a matter of following His guidance. It’s very, very easy. Probably, or most of the time, we have to use our heart not the mind.

Whether the heart or the mind should control us may be debatable. But personally I’d rather choose the heart to control us.

First of all, in this predominantly Catholic Christian country, there is no sacred mind, only a Sacred Heart. Second, there is this proposition: The heart is always right but the mind is not. Third, when the heart stops beating, what can the mind do? Nothing. However, when the mind stops thinking, the heart continues to beat.

Fourth, When you have a heart problem, you usually go to the Philippine Heart Center; with a mind problem, you end up at the National Mental Hospital. Which would you prefer?

Fifth, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, in his famous book “The Little Prince,” proposes: “It is through the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the  eye.”

My final point: I think, reconciling the heart and the mind is a must—for harmony. For it is the heart that has the capacity to know God, but it is the the mind that has the capacity to believe in Him.


B10 L18 Soldiers’ Hills III,

Caloocan City

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