Why we choose to remain in this material world, life after life-SP

March 10, 2012 in Articles, Damaghosa Dasa by Nityananda Rama dasa

Hare Krsna to All
All glories to Srila Prabhupada
Below is one of my favorite lectures delivered by Srila Prabhupada.
Why is that ?
Because he explains so clearly, so nicely, in such a way that  practically
anyone can understand-WHY we remain in this material world-even as  devotees.
Spend a little “quality time” here with the Lord’s empowered representative  and
see what I mean..
Hare Krsna
Damaghosa das
720420SB.TOKYO                    Lectures                
Karandhara:  Translation:  (SB 2.9.1) Sri Sukadeva  Gosvami said: O King, unless one is influenced by the energy of the  Supreme Personality of Godhead, there is no meaning to the relationship of  the pure soul in pure consciousness with the material body. It is  just like the dreamer seeing his own body working.” Prabhupada:  So, purport? Karandhara: “Purport. The question of Maharaja Pariksit is  perfectly answered as to how a living entity began his material life,  although he is apart from the material body and the mind.” Prabhupada: It is a very important question. Pariksit Maharaja inquired… Many  people inquired that “How the living entity was with Krsna, he became  fallen in this material world?” Is not done? This question is raised? So  this question is answered here, that “How the living entity who was with  Krsna became fallen down in contact with this material qualities?” So this is  the answer. Read the translation. Karandhara: “Sri Sukadeva Gosvami said:  O king, unless one is influenced by the energy of the Supreme Personality of  Godhead…” Prabhupada: It is simply the influence of the material  energy, nothing. Actually he has not fallen. Another example given is  given. Just like the moon is covered with scattered cloud, the passing  cloud.
You have seen. Everyone has experience. The cloud passes, and it appears  that the moon is moving. Have you seen this? Devotees: Yes. Prabhupada:  Actually the moon is not moving. It is a maya, illusion. It appears that the  moon is moving. But similarly, the living entity, because he is spiritual  spark of the Supreme, it has not fallen. It has not fallen. But he is  thinking, “I am fallen. I am material.” That is the reason. He is thinking,  “I am this body.” Actually the body has no connection with me. That is experienced, that the body has no connection with the  soul. The body is changing, dying. But I am the same. The same  example, the moon: The cloud is passing over in different way. The moon is  far away from the cloud, and it has nothing to do with the cloud, but it  appears the moon is moving. (break) Try to understand. Have questions and  answer. It is very important thing. Atma-mayam rte rajan. Except  atma-maya, the illusory energy… It is the maneuver or handling of the  illusory energy of Krsna. This illusory energy develops when we  forget Krsna. That’s all. It is… In other words, this illusory  identification of me with the body is simply due to my forgetfulness. We  wanted to forget, we wanted to give up Krsna and wanted to enjoy this  material world. Therefore Krsna is
giving us…    Just like when you play  some part in a drama, if you feel that “I am king,” then you can talk very  nicely. And if you feel that “I am Karandhara,” then you cannot play nicely  king. Is it not? Feeling must be there. If you are playing the part of a  king, then you must have the same courage and belief that “I am king.” You have to forget that you are Karandhara. Then your part  will be very nicely played. It will be appreciated. But if you think  simultaneously that “I am Karandhara. I am taking, playing the part of the  king,” then you cannot play. So because we wanted to play the part of  Krsna, enjoyer, Krsna is giving us chance that “You feel like Me.”–“I am  king. I am Krsna. I am God.” (laughter) All these rascals, those who are  feeling like that, “I am master. I am king. I am Krsna. I am God,” they are  all simply in that feeling only. That’s all. And this feeling is  created by Krsna: “All right. You want to play the part of a king. I  shall train you in such a way.” Just like director means, dramatic director  means, he creates a feeling. His direction is nothing but how to  feel.    Sometimes we played in our younger age Caitanya-lila. I  introduced. And one big director, Amrtalal Chosa, he was just like  grandfather. He was one of the, just like in England Shakespeare and others,  big, big
dramatic, well-known persons. This Amrtalal Chosa and Girish  Chandra Chosa, they introduced in India theatric… So we called him to  give us direction. He was giving us direction, and repeatedly he  was telling that “You feel like that,” especially to me. “You feel  like that.” So actually, when we played according to his direction,  the audience were all crying. And we could not understand how they  cried. We could not understand. On the stage when we played, it was  so perfect that all audience were crying. Actually we saw they  were smearing over their eyes with… But the whole thing is  artificial, but the effect to the audience became so nice. So similarly,  we are… Actually we have nothing to do with this material world, But we  have been trained by the illusory energy in such a way that we  are thinking, “I am Indian. I am American. I am this. I am that. I  am brahmana. I am sudra. I have to do this. I have got so much duty,”  all these illusions, simply thinking. We have nothing to do with all  this nonsense, but still, we are taking it very serious. “I have to do  like that. I have to do like that. I am this. I am that.” That’s all.  That is explained. Atma-mayam rte rajan: “Except the influence of  that atma-maya, the illusory energy of Krsna…” Atma-maya.  Read. Atma-mayam rte rajan parasyanu. Read it?
Karandhara: Parasyanubhavatmanah. Prabhupada: Parasyanubhavatmanah. Na  ghateta artha-sambandha. There cannot be any relation at all. Na ghateta.  Cannot be. Artha sambandhah. Svapna-drastur ivanjasa. The very exact example  is given, svapna-drastuh. Just like a man seeing dream: “Oh, there is  tiger, tiger, tiger, tiger! Save me!” He is crying. Another man is, “Where  is tiger? Why you are crying? Where is tiger?” But he, in the dream, he is  actually feeling: “The tiger has attacked me.” Therefore this example is  given, na ghatetartha-sambandhah. There cannot be any meaning of this  relationship except like a man dreaming and he is creating a situation. He  is dreaming there is a tiger and he is creating a situation, fearful  situation. Actually there is no cause of fear. There is no tiger. That  situation is created by dream. Actually there is no tiger. Similarly we have  created this material world and activity. People  are running, “Oh…, sonh, sonh, sonh, sonh, sonh, sonh, sonh,” identifying  that “Oh, I am the manager. I am the factory owner. I am this, I am that. We  have got his politics. We have to defeat such competitors.” All these things  are created exactly like that, svapna-drastur ivanjasa, just like a man is  creating his particular situation simply by dream. That’s all.
   So the answer is, when somebody asks you that “When  one has become in contact with this material nature?”He has not become in contact. He is thinking by  the influence of the external energy. Just like the same example: A  man is dreaming; there is no contact with tiger. Actually he has no  contact with that. Similarly, actually we are not fallen. We cannot  be fallen. But we have created a situation that we are, become… Try to  understand understand. It is very important point. We have simply created a  situation. We have not created a situation, Krsna has given us a  situation. Because we wanted to imitate Krsna, so Krsna has given  an opportunity: “All right. Imitate. You want to be imitation king in the  stage. So feel like this. Play like this. Do like this. People will applaud.  ‘Oh, a very nice king, very nice.’ ” That is the… So everyone in this  material world, they are playing some part. They wanted, “I want to be prime  minister.” “All right.” “I want to become very big business magnate.” “I want  to be leader.” “I want to be a philosopher.” “I want to be a  scientist.” So all this nonsense, they are trying to play–Krsna is giving  him the opportunity: “All right.” But it is a nonsense, all nonsense.  Simple dreaming. Just like you are dreaming. Next moment when the dream  is gone, everything is finished. No more tiger, no more jungle, no
more… Everything is finished. Similarly, so long this body  is continuing, I am thinking, “I am a responsible leader, I am this, I  am that.” But as soon as this body is finished, oh, these are (indistinct)  gone.
….Therefore the first sinful will of the living entity is  to become the Lord, and the consequent will of the Lord is that the living  entity forgets his actual life and thus dreams of the land of utopia where he  may become one like the Lord. The child cries to have the moon  from the mother and the mother gives the child a mirror to satisfy the crying  and disturbing child with the shadow of the moon. Similarly the crying child  of the Lord is given over to the shadow of the material world to lord it over  as a karmi and to give this up in frustration to become one with the Lord.  Both these stages are dreaming illusions only. There is no necessity of  tracing out the history when the living entity desired this, but the fact is  that as soon as he desired such, he was put under the control of atma-maya  by the direction of the Lord. ….
…Trivikrama: Srila Prabhupada? You were just saying that we are  not fallen. Actually this is an illusion thinking that we are fallen.  Yet I read… Prabhupada: The same example. In dream I am not  attacked by the tiger, but I am thinking, “Oh, tiger is there.” It is simply  dreaming condition. Trivikrama: But so many Vaisnavas are  praying… Prabhupada: So as soon as you understand that  “This is not… I am not in contact with tiger. It is all a dream,” then you  are delivered. Similarly, as soon as you understand, “All this  material condition of life we are simply dreaming; I am actually servant of  Krsna,” then you are liberated. That is Krsna conscious. If you keep  in Krsna consciousness, that “I am eternal servant of Krsna,” then you  are liberated. Sa gunan samatityaitan brahma-bhuyaa kalpate, Krsna  says. Immediately brahma-bhutah. Brahma-bhutah prasannatma na socati  na kanksati. He has no more lamentation, no more hankering. Samah  sarvesu bhutesu. He can see everyone on equal vision. Because he knows,  “Here is also another living entity.” He is not a Chinaman. He is a part  and parcel of God. He is not a Christian. He is not a Hindu. He is  simply thinking like that. So give him Krsna consciousness. That is  real
benefit, to bring him to the original position. Yes?….
…Trivikrama: This feeling that we have, that we are fallen, that we  are very fallen… Prabhupada: That is also illusion. That is also  illusion. You are fallen means you have got some certain desires  except service of Krsna. Therefore the conclusion is that if you keep  yourself tightly in Krsna’s service, there is no question of falling down or  there is no question of maya. You see? Devotee: Even at that  state, still the body is affected by the modes of nature. We are experiencing  desires. Prabhupada: You are not experiencing. Your body is experiencing.  You are feeling cold due to this body. You are not feeling cold. You  are not feeling cold. Devotee: But I think I am feeling  cold. Prabhupada: You are thinking. That is illusion. That is  illusion. Devotee: So rise above that. Prabhupada: Yes. But not  artificially, but this is the fact. You have to gradually rise to that  platform…..
Some conclusions-
We all have some practical experience of either ourselves or other  devotees when we just dont seem
to want to chant Hare Krsna at all or serve Krsna either, or even associate  with other devotees.In other words, either TV, radio,music, movies, restaurant  food, traveling, career work, family life, the list is endless- takes our  attention away from Krsna seva.
The verse taken above explains why we have this “feeling”. We have allowed  ourselves to become
influenced by the illusory energy of the Supreme Lord. Why is that? Because  we really , at least at that
point in time, dont want to think of ourselves as the Lords servants even  though fairly constant lip service is paid toward that end.
Sometimes I think that some devotees, myself included, just have so  many material desires
that we allow ourselves to wander off the path of bhakti (temporarily of  course) and indulge our mind and senses in this material world by  pursuing  what could be, a million different things. As Prabhupada often  explains, any activity we may do, that has NO relation to service to the  Lord is maya, illusory, and karma bandhana or yielding to us either now or in a  future life, some reaction.(BG 3.9) So knowing this, why do we do this?
He explains it as a dreaming condition. When we dream at night, we totally  forget the other “reality” during daytime.And while this dream goes on, we  fantasize so many things in this dream like state that is very real.
During the daytime, we completely forget last nights dream and take this  daytime activity to be the actual
“reality”. But the reality of it all is that both states are dreams and we  only take daytime to be real only because it last longer than last nights dream.  While each goes on they are both very real to us. But as he explains   above, both are nothing more than dreams and not of any substance at all. In  this condition, we are simply dreaming our valuable human lives away.
As the song goes–…row row row your boat , gently down the stream,  merrily merrily merrily, life is but a dream”. And how true that song was  written. Our only chance, according to the spiritual authorities and  sastra, of escaping this constant dreamlike world is to constantly chant  the Holy Names of Krsna and Rama where the illusory energy of the Lord has no  chance of capturing us at all. Otherwise we will continue to live out dream like  lives, thinking we are going somewhere important. The below SB verse nicely sums  it all up.
SB 4.22.31   When one deviates from his original  consciousness, he loses the capacity to remember his previous  position or recognize his present one. When remembrance is lost,  all knowledge acquired is based on a false foundation. When this  occurs, learned scholars consider that the soul is lost.