19870813 Srimad-Bhagavatam 2.2.17 @ Bangkok, Thailand
19870813_Srimad_Bhagavatam_2.2.17_Bangkok The following is a class given by HH Jayapataka Swami Maharaj on August 13,1987 in Bangkok, Thailand. The class begins with the reading from the Śrīmad Bhāgavatam, Second Canto, Chapter two, Text 17 .
na yatra kālo 'nimiṣāṁ paraḥ prabhuḥ kuto nu devā jagatāṁ ya īśire na yatra sattvaṁ na rajas tamaś ca na vai vikāro na mahān pradhānam TRANSLATION In that transcendental state of labdhopaśānti, there is no supremacy of devastating time, which controls even the celestial demigods who are empowered to rule over mundane creatures, and what to speak of the demigods themselves? Nor is there the mode of material goodness, nor passion, nor ignorance, nor even the false ego, nor the material Causal Ocean, nor the material nature.
PURPORT by Śrīla Prabhupāda: Devastating time, which controls even the celestial demigods by its manifestations of past, present and future, does not act on the transcendental plane. The influence of time is exhibited by the symptoms of birth, death, old age and disease, and these four principles of material conditions are present everywhere in any part of the material cosmos up to the planet Brahmaloka, where the duration of life of the inhabitants appears to us to be fabulous. Insurmountable time even brings about the death of Brahmā, so what to speak of other demigods like Indra, Candra, Sūrya, Vāyu and Varuṇa? The astronomical influence directed by the different demigods over mundane creatures is also conspicuous by its absence. In material existence, the living entities are afraid of Satanic influence, but for a devotee on the transcendental plane there is no such fear at all. The living entities change their material bodies in different shapes and forms under the influence of the different modes of material nature, but in the transcendental state the devotee is guṇa-tīta, or above the material modes of goodness, passion and ignorance. Thus the false ego of "I am the lord of all I survey" does not arise there. In the material world the false ego of the living being trying to lord it over the material nature is something like the moth's falling in a blazing fire. The moth is captivated by the glaring beauty of the fire, and when he comes to enjoy it, the blazing fire consumes him. In the transcendental state the living being is pure in his consciousness, and as such he has no false ego to lord it over the material nature. Rather, his pure consciousness directs him to surrender unto the Supreme Lord, as stated in the Bhagavad-gītā (7.19): vāsudevaḥ sarvam iti sa mahātmā sudurlabhaḥ. All this indicates that in the transcendental state there is neither material creation nor the Causal Ocean for material nature. The above-mentioned state of affairs is factual on the transcendental plane, but is factually revealed in a transcendentalist's knowledge of the advanced state of pure consciousness. Such transcendentalists are of two types, namely the impersonalists and the devotees. For the impersonalist the ultimate goal or destination is the brahmajyoti of the spiritual sky, but for the devotees the ultimate goal is the Vaikuṇṭha planets. The devotees experience the above-mentioned state of affairs by attainment of spiritual forms for activity in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. But the impersonalist, because of his neglecting the association of the Lord, does not develop a spiritual body for spiritual activity, but remains a spiritual spark only, merged in the effulgent spiritual rays of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. The Lord is the full-fledged form of eternity, bliss and knowledge, but the formless brahmajyoti is simply eternity and knowledge. The Vaikuṇṭha planets are also forms of eternity, bliss and knowledge, and therefore the devotees of the Lord, who are admitted into the abode of the Lord, also get bodies of eternity, bliss and knowledge. As such there is no difference between one and another. The Lord's abode, name, fame, entourage, etc., are of the same transcendental quality, and how this transcendental quality differs from the material world is explained herewith in this verse. In the Bhagavad-gītā, three principal subjects have been explained by Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, namely karma-yoga, jñāna-yoga and bhakti-yoga, but one can reach the Vaikuṇṭha planets by the practice of bhakti-yoga only. The other two are incompetent in helping one reach the Vaikuṇṭhalokas, although they can, however, conveniently take one to the effulgent brahmajyoti, as described above explained by Lord Śrī Kṛṣṇa, namely karma-yoga, jṣāna-yoga and bhakti-yoga, but one can reach the Vaikuṇṭha planets by the practice of bhakti-yoga only. The other two are incompetent in helping one reach the Vaikuṇṭhalokas, although they can, however, conveniently take one to the effulgent brahmajyoti, as described above.
Lecture by GM: In this verse, it is explaining about a yogī who has realized the transcendental platform. It says here labdhopaśānti. In that transcendental state, they get the supreme peace. There, time has no supremacy, the three modes don’t exist, nor false ego, nor nirvāṇa – the material nirvāṇa. It’s totally on the transcendental platform. It’s a very technical verse. But this actually explains the difference between the realization of ordinary nirvāṇa and the higher state of Kṛṣṇa consciousness. In the nirvāṇa one is still within the material energy, something like in the Causal Ocean. And eventually, one could fall down from that position and come back again. But here, someone who has a transcendental realization, they are above the rule of time. The description here, how the devotee in the transcendental nature is above time, above material nature, above the three modes... This is very important. It shows how the devotee is transcendental. It is important to know the difference between material ...destruction of one’s material situation and actual positive spiritual realization. There is a spiritual world. There is a Supreme Person. This is a good verse to refer to if somebody needs to know what is the difference between nirvāṇa and spiritual realization. Many people don’t have a concept of anything beyond neutralization of our material situation. Bhāgavatam very clearly states that in the material world everyone is under the control of time. We are certainly under the control of time, even great demigods like Brahmā are under the control of time. In the spiritual world, time does not pass. There it is eternally present. In the material world... the Holy Dham in the material world is something like a resort area for Kṛṣṇa to come and visit to deliver the fallen souls of the universe.
The brahmajyoti is also impersonal, that has a direct connection with Kṛṣṇa. The other form of connecting with Kṛṣṇa is through devotional service. We don’t actually know what is the present in this material world, because we see what is nearest to the past...nearest to the present. Whenever we see something, with our material eyes, we’re seeing the reflection of light. Actually, that thing is already in the past. When we are actually in the spiritual realization, there’s separation of time and space. Here in the material world, there’s past, present – so-called present – and then there’s the future. Everyone has got a built in finishing date, but in the spiritual world, since everyone is eternal, there’s no limitations. To be able to achieve this shelter of Kṛṣṇa and this realization is considered to be the greatest benediction. One can easily achieve that by regular practice of Kṛṣṇa consciousness and by chanting the Hare Kṛṣṇa Maha mantra. Hare Kṛṣṇa Hare Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Kṛṣṇa Hare Hare, Hare Rāma Hare Rāma Rāma Rāma Hare Hare. Any questions? Question: Indistinct GM: It’s temporary. A cloud is not an illusion. It’s neither a permanent thing. A cloud may take a shape in the sky of an elephant or a tiger, and you see it and you say, “Oh, that’s nice.” But after some time, again the shape will change. So a cloud is temporary; it’s transient, it’s impermanent, but it’s not exactly illusion. It does have its existence. Similarly, the material world exists. It mentions here sattvaṁ rajas tamaś...mahān pradhānam. The three modes. And it mentions the Causal Ocean and the material nature. It also mentions the false ego. So when the false ego is cut off, that is and one identifies, then it’s going to the...material unmanifested energy or the pradhān. It’s a very peaceful state. There’s no ... the three modes of material nature are not agitating the pradhān. In the universes they are. Those who enter the nirvāṇa, they enter into this unmanifested nature. But when the universe is over, again they’re brought back into the body of Viṣnu. And when He creates again, again they come out. They never actually get out of the material world. They get out of the material universes, but they don’t get out of the material world. They go to the unmanifested energy of the material world, because they identify themselves with the body. And they lose their false ego, but they don’t gain their real ego. They don’t gain their ego of being a devotee or being a spirit. Then they think, “Now I don’t exist.” But eventually ... because they do exist. That doesn’t destroy the soul. So eventually, either they fall from there and come back into the material universes, or they get some spiritual education and they go up to the spiritual sky.
Question: Indistinct GM: This example was given like this. Sometimes you have a movie projector? You have a light and a film. The light goes into a lens – glass lens? – It goes, and the picture is normally upside-down, and it goes through the lens and there’s a little dot of light, then the picture turns over, and when it comes on the screen, it’s right side up. The spiritual world is the basis, but compared to the material world it’s the opposite. Actually we’re upside-down, and they’re right side up! But from our vision, that means that they’re upside-down. So from the spiritual it comes to a point, and it goes around. So that “point” is the ... just on either side of the point, the light becomes like a little white light. This side it’s manifested, the other side it’s manifested, but at the focal point, then it’s just light. So on one side is the spiritual light, on the other side is the material light. Then from there comes the material universe, other side is the spiritual world. So, one side is the material nirvāṇa, the other side is the Brahman nirvāṇa.
Question: Indistinct GM: I don’t think so. They don’t believe there’s a soul. They believe that the soul becomes dismantled. They don’t believe in an eternal soul. They’re nihilistic, the ones that want this self-destruction. They take apart their false ego, and remain in that material, unmanifested energy.
Question: Indistinct GM: If they knew there was a soul, they’d go the other side. That’s why we want to educate that there is a soul. They say there is a soul – ātma – but they say the soul is also material. When the soul dismantles, then you’re finished. They’re nihilistic. Of course I don’t know all of their groups, but what I normally read here in Thailand is nihilism – self-destruction – is the goal. But that is considered as spiritual suicide. They want to commit permanent suicide, to end all suffering. This is a very negative idea. One will not want to do that unless he is totally frustrated. The way to get total frustration is to go for total enjoyment. Total enjoyment brings total frustration, because there’s no satisfaction in the material world. And the material world, if we try to enjoy unlimitedly, we get entangled in such a way we suffer every day. It’s the nature of the mode of passion. Passion looks enjoyable in the beginning and it brings suffering in the end. Goodness, there’s a little suffering in the beginning, but happiness in the end. So more frustration comes from passion. Actually the solution is that people should know that there’s a spiritual soul, there’s a spiritual world. That there’s a spiritual happiness, you don’t have to commit spiritual suicide, and stop to exist. Actually no-one stops to exist, but their false ego can be destroyed, can be dismantled in the pradhān.
Question: Indistinct GM: They fall from there. Then they start all over. But then they come as a Lord Brahmā. Some very... because when they come from there they’ll be very pure. There will be no sin. They worked off their sin, they went into that pradhān. But they didn’t go to the brahmajyoti. Or they may remain in some levels. I don’t know. There’s not so much discussion about it in the Bhāgavatam, about the level before the brahmajyoti. The level is mentioned, but there hasn’t been a lot of discussion on this. Maybe in other Purānas it’s described more. Or maybe Buddha is described more.
Question: Indistinct GM: Brahmajyoti. He goes there, it’s also like a type of suicide, although he has a soul. But he feels that his soul is merging with the spiritual energy. Or he thinks he’s become that energy. There’s a very subtle difference between the brahmajyoti and the non- brahmajyoti, the nirvāṇajyoti, the nirvāṇa energy. Both describe it as light, seeing the light.
Question: Indistinct GM: Eventually. Either up or down. It’s unnatural to remain in that state always. By nature we’re active, Because by nature we’re active, we can remain inactive for a certain time. Eventually, we’ll again want to act. We’ll fall down, or we’ll know how to do spiritual action, we’ll go up to the spiritual platform. Someone may say that ... impersonalists they say that Kṛṣṇa is in action, therefore it’s material; He has a form, therefore it’s material. Form, action means material. Here it explains, that in the material world the form and action is all under the time factor. Therefore, everything has a past, present and a future. So everything has a beginning and an end. But the time factor doesn’t exist in the spiritual world. There everything is perpetually existing, eternally. To create the material world, Kṛṣṇa has created an energy known as Time. Time does not exist as we know it in the spiritual world. Things go on there. It’s not this is the beginning. Everything always existed. But to create a material world from that eternal time, He takes out an area. And He says, “Now you’re beginning and it goes for some time, then it will end. It goes back. But from the eternal time, the world comes out temporarily and again comes back in. In this world, the time factor is all-pervasive. Everyone is under the control of time. Time is actually what limits us. Other things also limit us; the three modes, the false ego, but over everything is time. In the spiritual world there is no time. There is eternal time, but not this temporary time. Because, in the material world, people see through the body. They have material senses. But in the spiritual world there’s no material body. The soul has it’s own form. That form is in a type of flux, where there is no separation of time and space, although they are individual forms. It’s not totally conceivable to us, how this is possible. We can conceptualize it, we cannot actually realize it with this mind, because this mind is material. We can only conceptualize what it would be like, we can’t understand. That how such a thing can exist, we can’t understand. That, where there is no separation between time and space. There’s immediate connection between everything. The soul is directly perceiving, but it has a form in order to act. But there there’s no suffering, there’s no birth; there’s no death. But in the material world, that soul-form, becomes dormant and put back into a “spark” form, seed. And in the body, there’s a small seed. So when that ... like a little star ... a little light ... But in the body ... the body is going through these changes. It’s feeling that it’s going to be destroyed. So one feels the pain of birth, the pain of old age, disease and death, and then again re-birth. But this pain cannot exist in the spiritual world.
So we want to get rid of the body, but as Prabhupāda says here in the purport: “ ...the impersonalist, because of his neglecting the association of the Lord, does not develop a spiritual body for spiritual activity, ...” In other words, the soul doesn’t develop into a form. The soul stays as a formless spark. “...but remains a spiritual spark only, merged in the effulgent spiritual rays of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.)” That’s for the jnañi yogis. Hare Kṛṣṇa!
Transcribed by Caitanya Carana dasa