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© 2004 - Hansadutta das

Dirty Hearts and Dusty Brains

by Hansadutta das

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A Fire Can Never Be Extinguished By Adding Fuel

In the material world, everyone is trying to become prominent. There is always a great competition or struggle for supremacy. As long as there is the desire to lord it over the material nature in order to exploit material nature for sense gratification, then miseries of material existence will continue birth after birth, because life is continuous. This body is destroyed in time, and we get our next body according to our mental situation at the time of leaving this body.

Vedic wisdom teaches the conditioned souls how to get out of this perpetual cycle of birth and death, how to get out of the temporary existence and come to our original, permanent, spiritual existence, which is unchanging, eternal and beginningless. The soul’s nature is eternal. Therefore, we find that however much we struggle or plan, we cannot be happy with any kind of temporary material arrangement.

The clue to real satisfaction is to become free from material desires. Material desires can never be satisfied, just as a fire can never be satisfied or extinguished by adding more fuel. Our desires are binding us to perpetual mieries in the shape of birth, old age, disease and death. There are also other problems, but these are primary—everyone is subjected to these four sufferings.

No Medicine Can Stop Old Age

At the present moment, the whole world is in ignorance about the science of the self, the science of the soul. The world is in ignorance, trying to counteract the miseries of life by material advancement of science, medicine, economics, politics and so on. We see that thousands of years ago there was birth, old age, disease and death, and in the modern age of medicine and technology and so many wonderful scientific achievements, birth, old age, disease and death are still present. We have to take knowledge from a different source. material knowledge may be good for material advancement, but we cannot solve material problems of birth, death, old age and disease with material knowledge. No medicine can stop old age. No medicine can solve material problems of birth, death, old age and diease with material knowledge. No medicine can top old age. no medicine can bring a dead man back to life.

We Are All Swimming, Struggling To Exist

Rather than try to adjust materially, Vedic wisdom says no! The living entity is not material. The living entity is by nature spiritual and therefore eternal. As such, the living entity can be happy only in the eternal sky, or the spiritual atmosphere. Therefore the real advancement of human civilisation is to get out of the material world, not to enter deep into it in the name of science. We should just know that material life cannot be permanent. it will always be temporary. A man swimming in the ocean may be a good swimmer, but he will drown for sure. Even if he can swim for a week, he will drown. But if somone pulls him out of the ocean, then his problem is solved. We are in the ocean of birth and death, and we are all swimming, sturggling to exist. Vedic culture advises that before death overtakes us, we should learn and practice the science of the soul, the science of self-realisation, Krishna consciousness. That is the real science, the topmost science, the science of God. What is God? What is my relationship with Him? How to go back home, back to Godhead? There are two sciences. One science is for manipulating matter, which is useful for taking care of this body. But after all, the body is temporary. Thus there must be knowledge of how to leave the temporary material body to go back to Godhead and not come back into this material existence with another body and another set of miseries like birth, old age, disease and death. This science is yoga, bhakti yoga, the yoga of devotion. By devotion to Krishna, all these things will be understood.

Then We are Free, then We are Desireless

We cannot stop desire, but we can purify it by dovetailing it in the service of Krishna. Everyone has so many desires. Someone desires to be a political leader, someone desires to be the president, someone desires to be a businessman, someone desires to be a housewife. All such desires are in themselves material, but when we act for the satisfaction of Krishna, then the desires are purified in devotional service. If someone wants to be a businessman, all right, do business. But spend the money for Krishna. If someone is an architect, all right, design a beautiful building for Krishna. If someone is a scholar, all right, write scholarly books on Krishna. In this way, practically everything can be dovetailed for the service of Krishna. When our energy, intelligence, wealth and everything are offered in Krishna consciousness or for the satisfaction of Krishna, then we are free, then we are deireless. The desire to please Krishna is desirelessness, and everything else is material and will bind us to this conditional existence.

Putting Water on Each Leaf

Everyone wants to enjoy life to the maximum degree by his work, but as long as he works for his personal satisfaction, he will only suffer. The same work done for Krishna actually satisfies Him. We are part and parcel of Krishna, just as our hand is part and parcel of our body. Our hand serves the body by bringing food to the stomach. The hand also enjoys the food through the agency of the stomach. Through the agency of the whole, the part is also served, because it is intimately connected. For example, we cannot serve the tree by putting water on each leaf. We put the water on the root of the tree, and then the water is distributed equally to all parts. Human society is supposed to be organised on this God-centered principle: ishavasyam idam sarvam. God is the centre, and we are all emanations of the Supreme. As such, just as this electricity is the emanation of the powerhouse (it comes from the powerhouse and returns to the powerhouse), there must be a complete circuit with us. Our energy is coming from Krishna, and our energy is meant to go back to Krishna. That principle is bhakti-yoga.

Give Up Trying to Master this Material World

Anyone can practice bhakti-yoga. He can begin just by chanting the names of Krishna: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. Then the relationship begins. For example, with a neighbour we begin by calling him by his name, then the relationship starts—“Mr. Brown.” We introduce ourselves, and there is reciprocation. Devotional service means to establish our lost relationship with Krishna. The most basic practice to help us is chanting: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare/ Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. This sound vibration of the holy names of Krishna are identical with Krishna, and therefore when we vibrate “Krishna,” we are in touch with Him. Such connections purify the heart when we chant Hare Krishna, and when the heart becomes clean, then we can understand our real position, our real identy as everlasting servants of Krishna.

Everyone Thinks, “I am the Master”

Now we are trying to be masters of this material world. We are trying to imitate Krishna. We must give up trying to master this material world and surrender to the real master. The real master is Krishna, and we are the servants. In this material consciousness, everyone thinks, “I am the master,” and that is the cause of our suffering. We are trying to do something which is not possible. We cannot be the master, but we can be the servant, just as the hand is the servant. When there’s an itch, then the hand scratches. It is very natural. Similarly, we have such a natural relationship with Krishna, but artificially we are trying to oppose Krishna, resist Krishna. When we stop resisting and surrender and cooperate with Krishna, then we are liberated. It is a matter of cooperation.

The Mirror of the Mind

Question: We are supposed to be tolerant.

Hansadutta dasa: Tolerant, but not foolish. When Madhvacharya was attacked by thieves and murderers on the road, he killed them. He was a powerful man. We have to preach Krishna consciousness, so we shouldn’t allow someone to stop us. Of course, if you like, you can tolerate it, but you cannot tolerate it when you see another devotee being harrassed. A father may tolerate an insult, but he cannot tolerate seeing his children insulted. Every devotee thinks of his godbrothers in that way. He cannot tolerate seeing them harrassed.

Question: How do we understand what our destiny is?

Hansadutta dasa: Shastra says, “As a man’s desire is, so is his destiny, for as his desire is, so is his will, and as his will is, so is his deed, and as his deed is, so is his reward, whether good or bad.” And “a man acts according to his desire, and after death he goes to the next world bearing in his mind the subtle impression of his deeds, and after reaping there the harvest of his deeds, he returns again to this world of action. Thus he who has desires continues to be subjected to rebirth.”

This is the binding principle of material existence, and we have to get out of it. We have to become purified, free from material desires. For example, a horse also has desires, but a man trains the horse to become submissive to his desire. Similarly, we have desires, but God also has desires, and our business is to submit to His desires, just as the horse mut submit to the desires of the owner. As long as the horse rebels, then he has a difficult time, but when the horse submits, when he is broken in to recognise the authority of the owner, then he’s treated nicely.

Hansadutta das
Rittvik Representative of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

Dirty Hearts and Dusty Brains/ WORLD SANKIRTAN PARTY
©2004-Hansadutta das
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