kumbhipakam gurum api hare narakam napanetum
ramya-rama-mrdu-tanu-lata nandane napi rantum
bhave bhave hrdaya-bhavane bhavayeyam bhavantam
court, and that the Temple and other buildings of the society would be declared illegal, demolished, the Society's members forcibly evicted.
In August the Krishna Society received the resolution of the Hakim of the Karasai
District stating that the Kazakh government’s 2001 act of acceptance of the Society’s buildings into official usage had been annulled. The Hakim’s resolution was not on government letterhead, had no official document number, had no signatures, and had no official stamps.
The directors of the Krishna Society had first seen this document in a meeting with the assistant Karasai Hakim in July 2008. During the meeting the Krishna Society directors were not accompanied by their advocate. Thus, despite being forced by the Hakim, they refused to sign the document.
The assistant Hakim angrily responded to their denial by saying, "Be prepared for new
On July 30, 2008 the Council for Connections with Religious Organizations of the Kazakh Government held a meeting in Astana to discuss the situation with the Society for Krishna Consciousness.
At that time, an attempt was again made by the chairman of the National Religious Committee, A. Dozhan to force to the Krishna Society to sign an agreement to relocate to unusable land in the Iliy district of Almaty Province.
The directors of the Society have rejected this land, which is an active garbage dump.
The land is unsuitable for constructing a place of worship, has no essential communications, devoid of drinking or irrigation water.
As an alternative to the Kazakh government proposal, the Krishna Society has appealed that the government allow them to use the land where their temple and other buildings are situated. This land was legally purchased, privatized, and developed at huge expense by the Society’s members and cultivated for 9 years.
According to Article 17 of the Law on Freedom of Faith and Religious Organizations in Republic of Kazakhstan, religious organizations have a pre-emptive right to receive the religious buildings with the adjacent territory.
The assistant Hakim of Almaty province, S. Mukanov, responded that there would be no other concessions. He stated, "We have already filed a claim for demolishing the remaining buildings.”
The Karasai government has initiated trials against the Society for Krishna Consciousness since 2005. This has resulted in the demolition of 26 homes of Hindu practitioners in 2006 and 2007.
The court cases have also resulted in the confiscation of 116 acres of the Society's land. This prime property was transferred to the Karasai district land reserve without compensation to the Society.
The proposed compulsory Temple demolition and forced eviction will be the final stage of the Kazakh government’s campaign to destroy the largest established center of the Krishna Society in Central Asia.
As stated before, after attaining the highest stage of self-realization, one becomes situated in devotional service to the Lord. The perfection of devotional service is to attain love of God. Love of God involves the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the devotee, and the process of devotional service. Self-realization, the brahma-bhuta stage, is the beginning of spiritual life; it is not the perfectional stage. If a person understands that he is not his body and that he has nothing to do with this material world, he becomes free from material entanglement. But that realization is not the perfectional stage. The perfectional stage begins with activity in the self-realized position, and that activity is based on the understanding that a living entity is eternally the subordinate servitor of the Supreme Lord. Otherwise, there is no meaning to self-realization. If one is puffed up with the idea that he is the Supreme Brahman, or that he has become one with Narayana, or that he has merged into the brahmajyoti effulgence, then he has not grasped the perfection of life. As the Srimad-Bhagavatam (10.2.32) states,
ye 'nye 'ravindaksa vimukta-maninas
tvayy asta-bhavad avisuddha-buddhayah
aruhya krcchrena param padam tatah
patanty adho 'nadrta-yusmad-anghrayah
Persons who are falsely puffed up, thinking they have become liberated simply by understanding their constitutional position as Brahman, or spirit soul, are factually still contaminated. Their intelligence is impure because they have no understanding of the Personality of Godhead, and ultimately they fall down from their puffed-up position.
According to the Bhagavatam (1.2.11) there are three levels of transcendentalists: the self-realized knowers of the impersonal Brahman feature of the Absolute Truth; the knowers of the Paramatma, the localized aspect of the Supreme, which is understood by the process of mystic yoga; and the bhaktas, who are in knowledge of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and engage in His devotional service. Those who understand simply that the living being is not matter but spirit soul and who desire to merge into the Supreme Spirit Soul are in the lowest transcendental position. Above them are the mystic yogis, who by meditation see within their hearts the four-handed Visnu form of the Paramatma, or Supersoul. But persons who actually associate with the Supreme Lord, Krsna, are the highest among all transcendentalists. In the Sixth Chapter of the Bhagavad-gita (6.47) the Lord confirms this:
yoginam api sarvesam mad-gatenantar-atmana
sraddhavan bhajate yo mam sa me yukta-tamo matah
"And of all yogis, the one with great faith who always abides in Me, thinks of Me within himself, and renders transcendental loving service to Me--he is the most intimately united with Me in yoga and is the highest of all. That is My opinion." This is the highest perfectional stage, known as prema, or love of God.
In the Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu (1.4.15-16), Srila Rupa Gosvami, a great authority in the devotional line, describes the different stages in coming to the point of love of Godhead:
adau sraddha tatah sadhu-sango 'tha bhajana-kriya
tato 'nartha-nivrttih syat tato nistha rucis tatah
athasaktis tato bhavas tatah premabhyudancati
sadhakanam ayam premnah pradurbhave bhavet kramah
The first requirement is that one should have sufficient faith that the only process for attaining love of Godhead is bhakti, devotional service to the Lord. Throughout the Bhagavad-gita Lord Krsna teaches that one should give up all other processes of self-realization and fully surrender unto Him. That is faith. One who has full faith in Krsna (sraddha) and surrenders unto Him is eligible for being raised to the level of prema, which Lord Caitanya taught as the highest perfectional stage of human life.
Some persons are addicted to materially motivated religion, while others are addicted to economic development, sense gratification, or the idea of salvation from material existence. But prema, love of God, is above all these. This highest stage of love is above mundane religiosity, above economic development, above sense gratification, and above even liberation, or salvation. Thus love of God begins with the firm faith that one who engages in full devotional service has attained perfection in all these processes.
The next stage in the process of elevation to love of God is sadhu-sanga, association with persons already in the highest stage of love of God. One who avoids such association and simply engages in mental speculation or so-called meditation cannot be raised to the perfectional platform. But one who associates with pure devotees or an elevated devotional society goes to the next stage--bhajana-kriya, or acceptance of the regulative principles of worshiping the Supreme Lord. One who associates with a pure devotee of the Lord naturally accepts that person as his spiritual master, and when the neophyte devotee accepts a pure devotee as his spiritual master, the duty of the spiritual master is to train the neophyte in the principles of regulated devotional service, or vaidhi-bhakti. At this stage the devotee's service is based on his capacity to serve the Lord. The expert spiritual master engages his followers in work that will gradually develop their consciousness of service to the Lord. Therefore the preliminary stage of understanding prema, love of God, is to approach a proper pure devotee, accept him as one's spiritual master, and execute regulated devotional service under his guidance.
The next stage is called anartha-nivrtti, in which all the misgivings of material life are vanquished. A person gradually reaches this stage by regularly performing the primary principles of devotional service under the guidance of the spiritual master. There are many bad habits we acquire in the association of material contamination, chief of which are illicit sexual relationships, eating animal food, indulging in intoxication, and gambling. The first thing the expert spiritual master does when he engages his disciple in regulated devotional service is to instruct him to abstain from these four principles of sinful life.
Since God is supremely pure, one cannot rise to the highest perfectional stage of love of God without being purified. In the Bhagavad-gita (10.12), when Arjuna accepted Krsna as the Supreme Lord, he said, pavitram paramam bhavan: "You are the purest of the pure." The Lord is the purest, and thus anyone who wants to serve the Supreme Lord must also be pure. Unless a person is pure, he can neither understand what the Personality of Godhead is nor engage in His service in love, for devotional service, as stated before, begins from the point of self-realization, when all misgivings of materialistic life are vanquished.
After following the regulative principles and purifying the material senses, one attains the stage of nistha, firm faith in the Lord. When a person has attained this stage, no one can deviate him from the conception of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. No one can persuade him that God is impersonal, without a form, or that any form created by imagination can be accepted as God. Those who espouse these more or less nonsensical conceptions of the Supreme Lord cannot dissuade him from firm faith in the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krsna.
In the Bhagavad-gita Lord Krsna stresses in many verses that He is the Supreme Personality of Godhead. But despite Lord Krsna's stressing this point, many so-called scholars and commentators still deny the personal conception of the Lord. One famous scholar wrote in his commentary on the Bhagavad-gita that one does not have to surrender to Lord Krsna or even accept Him as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, but that one should rather surrender to "the Supreme within Krsna." Such fools do not know what is within and what is without. They comment on the Bhagavad-gita according to their own whims. Such persons cannot be elevated to the highest stage of love of Godhead. The may be scholarly, and they may be elevated in other departments of knowledge, but they are not even neophytes in the process of attaining the highest stage of perfection, love of Godhead. Nistha implies that one should accept the words of Bhagavad-gita, the words of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, as they are, without any deviation or nonsensical commentary.
If a person is fortunate enough to vanquish all misgivings caused by material existence and rise up to the stage of nistha, he can then rise to the stages of ruci (taste) and asakti (attachment for the Lord). Asakti is the beginning of love of Godhead. By progressing, one then advances to the stage of relishing a reciprocal exchange with the Lord in ecstasy (bhava). Every living entity is eternally related to the Supreme Lord, and this relationship may be in any one of many transcendental humors. At the stage called asakti, attachment, a person can understand his relationship with the Supreme Lord. When he understands his position, he begins reciprocating with the Lord. By constant reciprocation with the Lord, the devotee is elevated to the highest stage of love of Godhead, prema.
This is an excerpt from a lecture on Siddha Pranali. Here Prabhupada states his opinion on rasa.
Ramesvara: Srila Prabhupada, when the devotee is in the original relationship with Krsna, his siddha-deha, why is it that he sometimes changes his original rasa with Krsna?
Ramesvara: Each one of us has an original relationship with Krsna, some as plant, some as tree, some as cow, some as cowherd boy. So if that is re-established, why should the devotee desire to change it?
Prabhupada: Well, that is spiritual kingdom. You can change if you like.
Tamala Krsna: It is not static, Prabhupada once explained. Love is not static.
Prabhupada: Generally, it is not changed. Just like mother Yasoda, she's mother all the time, eternally.
Tamala Krsna: The question came in Bombay two or three years ago. Prabhupada said that it is not static. You can have (inaudible).
Hari-sauri: I always understood before that the rasa was fixed, but that within that rasa one may take different..., one may take a different line.
Prabhupada: That will be revealed when you are liberated. Why you are bothering now?
Ramesvara: That's the point.
vraje krida kare krsna premavista hana
dasa--servants; sakha--friends; pita-mata--father and mother; kanta-gana--lovers; lana--taking; vraje--in Vraja; krida kare--plays; krsna--Lord Krsna; prema-avista--absorbed in love; hana--being.
Absorbed in such transcendental love, Lord Sri Krsna enjoys in Vraja with His devoted servants, friends, parents and conjugal lovers.
The descent of Sri Krsna, the Absolute Personality of Godhead, is very purposeful. In the Bhagavad-gita it is said that one who knows the truth about Sri Krsna's descent and His various activities is at once liberated and does not have to fall again to this existence of birth and death after he leaves his present material body. In other words, one who factually understands Krsna makes his life perfect. Imperfect life is realized in material existence, in five different relationships we share with everyone within the material world: neutrality, servitorship, friendship, filial love, and amorous love between husband and wife or lover and beloved. These five enjoyable relationships within the material world are perverted reflections of relationships with the Absolute Personality of Godhead in the transcendental nature. That Absolute Personality, Sri Krsna, descends to revive the five eternally existing relationships. Thus He manifests His transcendental pastimes in Vraja so that people may be attracted into that sphere of activities and leave aside their imitation relationships with the mundane. Then, after fully exhibiting all such activities, the Lord disappears.
yathesta vihari' krsna kare antardhana
antardhana kari' mane kare anumana
yatha-ista--as much as He wishes; vihari'--enjoying; krsna--Lord Krsna; kare--makes; antardhana--disappearance; antardhana kari'--disappearing; mane--in the mind; kare--He makes; anumana--consideration.
Lord Krsna enjoys His transcendental pastimes as long as He wishes, and then He disappears. After disappearing, however, He thinks thus:
cira-kala nahi kari prema-bhakti dana
bhakti vina jagatera nahi avasthana
cira-kala--for a long time; nahi kari--I have not done; prema-bhakti--loving devotional service; dana--giving; bhakti--devotional service; vina--without; jagatera--of the universe; nahi--not; avasthana--existence.
"For a long time I have not bestowed unalloyed loving service to Me upon the inhabitants of the world. Without such loving attachment, the existence of the material world is useless.
The Lord seldom awards pure transcendental love, but without such pure love of God, freed from fruitive activities and empiric speculation, one cannot attain perfection in life.
sakala jagate more kare vidhi-bhakti
vidhi-bhaktye vraja-bhava paite nahi sakti
sakala--all; jagate--in the universe; more--to Me; kare--they do; vidhi-bhakti--regulative devotional service; vidhi-bhaktye--by regulative devotional service; vraja-bhava--the feelings of those in Vraja; paite--to obtain; nahi--not; sakti--the power.
"Everywhere in the world people worship Me according to scriptural injunctions. But simply by following such regulative principles one cannot attain the loving sentiments of the devotees in Vrajabhumi.
aisvarya-jnanete saba jagat misrita
aisvarya-sithila-preme nahi mora prita
aisvarya-jnanete--with knowledge of the opulences; saba--all; jagat--the world; misrita--mixed; aisvarya-sithila-preme--to love enfeebled by opulence; nahi--there is not; mora--My; prita--attraction.
"Knowing My opulences, the whole world looks upon Me with awe and veneration. But devotion made feeble by such reverence does not attract Me.
After His appearance, Lord Krsna thought that He had not distributed the transcendental personal dealings with His devotees in dasya, sakhya, vatsalya and madhurya. One may understand the science of the Supreme Personality of Godhead from the Vedic literature and thus become a devotee of the Lord and worship Him within the regulative principles described in the scriptures, but one will not know in this way how Krsna is served by the residents of Vrajabhumi. One cannot understand the dealings of the Lord in Vrndavana simply by executing the ritualistic regulative principles mentioned in the scriptures. By following scriptural injunctions one may enhance his appreciation for the glories of the Lord, but there is no chance for one to enter into personal dealings with Him. Giving too much attention to understanding the exalted glories of the Lord reduces the chance of one's entering into personal loving affairs with the Lord. To teach the principles of such loving dealings, the Lord decided to appear as Lord Caitanya.
aisvarya-jnane vidhi-bhajana kariya
vaikunthake yaya catur-vidha mukti pana
aisvarya-jnane--in knowledge of the opulences; vidhi--according to rules and regulations; bhajana--worship; kariya--doing; vaikunthake--to Vaikuntha; yaya--they go; catuh-vidha--four kinds; mukti--liberation; pana--achieving.
"By performing such regulated devotional service in awe and veneration, one may go to Vaikuntha and attain the four kinds of liberation.
sarsti, sarupya, ara samipya, salokya
sayujya na laya bhakta yate brahma-aikya
sarsti--opulences equal with the Lord's; sarupya--the same form as the Lord's; ara--and; samipya--personal association with the Lord; salokya--residence on a Vaikuntha planet; sayujya--oneness with the Lord; na laya--they do not accept; bhakta--devotees; yate--since; brahma-aikya--oneness with Brahman.
"These liberations are sarsti [achieving opulences equal to those of the Lord], sarupya [having a form the same as the Lord's], samipya [living as a personal associate of the Lord] and salokya [living on a Vaikuntha planet]. Devotees never accept sayujya, however, since that is oneness with Brahman.
Those engaged in devotional service according to the ritualistic principles mentioned in the scriptures attain these different kinds of liberation. But although such devotees can attain sarsti, sarupya, samipya and salokya, they are not concerned with these liberations, for such devotees are satisfied only in rendering transcendental loving service to the Lord. The fifth kind of liberation, sayujya, is never accepted even by devotees who perform only ritualistic worship. To attain sayujya, or merging into the Brahman effulgence of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is the aspiration of the impersonalists. A devotee never cares for sayujya liberation.
In this chapter the author has fully discussed the reason for the descent of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu. The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Sri Krsna, after displaying His pastimes as Lord Krsna, thought it wise to make His advent in the form of a devotee to explain personally the transcendental mellow reciprocations of service and love between Himself and His servants, friends, parents and fiancees. According to the Vedic literature, the foremost occupational duty for humanity in this Age of Kali is nama-sankirtana, or congregational chanting of the holy name of the Lord. The incarnation for this age especially preaches this process, but only Krsna Himself can explain the confidential loving service performed in the four principal varieties of loving affairs between the Supreme Lord and His devotees. Lord Krsna therefore personally appeared, with His plenary portions, as Lord Caitanya. As stated in this chapter, only for that purpose did Lord Krsna appear personally in Navadvipa in the form of Sri Krsna Caitanya Mahaprabhu.
Krsnadasa Kaviraja has herein presented much authentic evidence from Srimad-Bhagavatam and other scriptures to substantiate the identity of Lord Caitanya with Sri Krsna Himself. He has described bodily symptoms in Lord Caitanya that are visible only in the person of the Supreme Lord, and he has proved that Lord Caitanya appeared with His personal associates--Sri Nityananda, Advaita, Gadadhara, Srivasa and other devotees--to preach the special significance of chanting Hare Krsna. The appearance of Lord Caitanya is both significant and confidential. He can be appreciated only by pure devotees and only through the process of devotional service. The Lord tried to conceal His identity as the Supreme Personality of Godhead by representing Himself as a devotee, but His pure devotees can recognize Him by His special features. The Vedas and Puranas foretell the appearance of Lord Caitanya, but still He is sometimes called, significantly, the concealed descent of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Advaita Acarya was a contemporary of Lord Caitanya's father. He felt sorry for the condition of the world because even after Lord Krsna's appearance, no one had interest in devotional service to Krsna. This forgetfulness was so overwhelming that Advaita Prabhu was convinced that no one but Lord Krsna Himself could enlighten people about devotional service to the Supreme Lord. Therefore Advaita requested Lord Krsna to appear as Lord Caitanya. Offering tulasi leaves and Ganges water, He cried for the Lord's appearance. The Lord, being satisfied by His pure devotees, descends to satisfy them. As such, being pleased by Advaita Acarya, Lord Caitanya appeared.
Whoever is the recipient of Sriman Mahaprabhu’s mercy will single-mindedly take shelter of harinama without any duplicity. As he performs sadhana of harinama and gradually attains perfection, he will come to realise nama in the form of his sadhya, or goal. This is because Krishna’s name is both the goal and the means to attain it. There is no difference between Krishna’s name (nama) and Krishna Himself, the possessor of the name (nami).
It is necessary to deliberate a little on the subject of the practice, or sadhana, of sri nama. Sadhana is performed with the senses. Therefore, it is essential that the sadhaka firmly and expertly engage his senses in the activities of sadhana. One can perform the practices of sadhana in a charming way if one keeps the body healthy. This can be achieved by regulating one’s eating (yukta-ahara) and recreation (yukta-vihara).
In other words, if a person tortures his body by being falsely renounced, then all his senses become disabled. Consequently, instead of the sadhaka performing sadhana, he forfeits his life. In this regard, Bhagavan says in the Bhagavad-gita (6.16–17):
naty-asnatas tu yogo ’stina caikantam anasnatahna cati-svapna-silasyajagrato naiva carjuna
O Arjuna, yoga cannot be perfected by one who eats too much or too little, or who sleeps too much or too little.
yuktahara-viharasyayukta-ceshtasya karmasuyukta-svapnavabodhasyayogo bhavati duhkha-ha
For one who is moderate in eating and recreation, balanced in work, and regulated in sleeping and wakefulness, his practice of yoga destroys all material miseries.
The meaning here is that one who eats too much or hardly eats at all, who sleeps a lot or does not sleep enough, is never able to use his body and senses to perform the activities of sadhana. If a person does not allow his body to become unhealthy or his senses in active – by regulating all his endeavours including his eating, recreation, sleeping and waking – then his sadhana will be executed exquisitely and it will destroy all his miseries.
The implication is that one must engage one’s internal sense, the mind, in remembering and meditating upon sri nama, by protecting it from the four anarthas, or impediments to spiritual progress. These impediments are misconceptions about reality (svarupa-bhrama), the hankering for temporaty objects (asat-trishna), weakness of the heart in adopting the process of bhakti (hridayadaurbalya) and offences (aparadha). Moreover, one’s external senses should be protected from becoming habituated to activities that are unfavourable to one’s bhajana, such as over-eating, over-sleeping and endeavouring for sense objects. Instead, they should be incessantly engaged in the sadhana of nama-kirtana. The capacity to do so is indeed the expertise of a sadhaka.
The foundation of sadhana: determination to accept what is favourable for bhakti and to reject what is unfavourable
It is necessary for a sadhaka to be both vigilant and resolute in accepting what is favourable for his bhakti and rejecting what is unfavourable. Often various unfavourable things come into the life of a jiva in this material world, and if he does not carefully and decisively reject them, they will hinder his sadhana and delay him in attaining his cherished goal.
Sometimes one may think: “Let me do what is unfavourable for my sadhana today, and from tomorrow I will take special care to avoid this.’’ But one who manifests such weakness of heart (hridaya-daurbalya) will never attain auspiciousness. As soon as a sadhaka perceives something to be an obstacle to his bhajana, he should give it up immediately and embrace the mercy of Sriman Mahaprabhu. Determination is indeed the foundation of sadhana. If a person lacks determination, he cannot progress even a single step in his sadhana.
The sadhaka’s foremost assistant is sadhu-sanga
The sadhu is the sadhaka’s primary benefactor. The heart of the baddha-jiva is so captured by anarthas, that he cannot single-handedly remove them, despite his arduous attempts to do so. For one who remains in sadhu-sanga, however, anarthas have no chance of manifesting. Srila Narottama Thakura Mahasaya has rightly said:
kiva va karite pare, kama-krodha sadhakerayadi haya sadhujanara sanga
What can lust and anger do to a sadhaka if he is in the association of sadhus?
Sadhu-sanga is absolutely essential for one who wants to properly perform the activities of sadhana. Sriman Mahaprabhu has said:
krishna-bhakti-janma-mula haya ‘sadhu-sanga’krishna-prema janme, tenho punah mukhya anga
The underlying cause of the birth of bhakti to Sri Krishna is sadhu-sanga. Even after krishna-prema awakens in the heart, sadhu-sanga remains the foremost principle.(Sri Caitanya-caritamrita, Madhya-lila 22.83)
mahat-kripa vina kona karme ‘bhakti’ nayakrishna-bhakti dure rahu, samsara nahe kshaya
Unless a person is blessed by an exalted saint, none of the activities he performs can be considered to be bhakti. What to say of attaining krishna-bhakti, it is impossible for him even to extricate himself from material existence.(Sri Caitanya-caritamrita, Madhya-lila 22.51)
Incessantly accept the shelter of sri nama and pray for the mercy of sri nama
If one can chant the holy name in the association of a pure devotee who is attached to chanting, all his offences will be dispelled and nama-tattva will quickly manifest in his heart. Our prayer at the lotus feet of Sriman Mahaprabhu is that by incessantly chanting the holy name in the association of a suddha-bhakta we may soon experience the sweetness (rasa) of sri nama. We pray for nothing other than the mercy of sri nama.
[Appearing in english for the first time: Rays of the Harmonist No.16 Karttika 2006Translated from Sri Gaudiya Patrika, Year 8, Issue 7]
ati-aharah--overeating or too much collecting; prayasah--overendeavouring; ca--and; prajalpah--idle talk; niyama--rules and regulations; agrahah--too much attachment to (or agrahah--too much neglect of); jana-sangah--association with worldly-minded persons; ca--and; laulyam--ardent longing or greed; ca--and; sadbhih--by these six; bhaktih--devotional service; vinasyati--is destroyed.
One's devotional service is spoiled when he becomes too entangled in the following six activities: (1) eating more than necessary or collecting more funds than required; (2) overendeavoring for mundane things that are very difficult to obtain; (3) talking unnecessarily about mundane subject matters; (4) Practicing the scriptural rules and regulations only for the sake of following them and not for the sake of spiritual advancement, or rejecting the rules and regulations of the scriptures and working independently or whimsically; (5) associating with worldly-minded persons who are not interested in Krsna consciousness; and (6) being greedy for mundane
Human life is meant for plain living and high thinking. Since all conditioned living beings are under the control of the Lord's third energy, this material world is designed so that one is obliged to work. The Supreme Personality of Godhead has three primary energies, or potencies. The first is called antaranga-sakti, or the internal potency. The second is called tatastha-sakti, or the marginal potency. The third is called bahiranga-sakti, or the external potency. The living entities constitute the marginal potency, and they are situated between the internal and external Potencies. Being subordinate as eternal servants of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the jivatmas, or atomic living entities, must remain under the control of either the internal or external potency. When they are under the control of the internal potency, they display their natural, constitutional activity--namely, constant engagement in the devotional service of the Lord. This is stated in Bhagavad-gita (9.13):
mahatmanas tu mam partha
daivim prakrtim asritah
jnatva bhutadim avyayam
"O son of Prtha, those who are not deluded, the great souls, are under the protection of the divine nature. They are fully engaged in devotional service because they know Me as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, original and inexhaustible."
The word mahatma refers to those who are broadminded, not cripple-minded. Cripple-minded persons, always engaged in satisfying their senses, sometimes expand their activities in order to do good for others through some "ism" like nationalism, humanitarianism or altruism. They may reject personal sense gratification for the sense gratification of others, like the members of their family, community or society--either national or international. Actually all this is extended sense gratification, from personal to communal to social. This may all be very good from the material point of view, but such activities have no spiritual value. The basis of such activity is sense gratification, either personal or extended. Only when a person gratifies the senses of the Supreme Lord can he be called a mahatma, or broadminded person.
In the above-quoted verse from Bhagavad-gita, the words daivim prakrtim refer to the control of the internal potency, or pleasure potency, of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This pleasure potency is manifested as Srimati Radharani, or Her expansion Laksmi, the goddess of fortune. When the individual jiva souls are under the control of the internal energy, their only engagement is the satisfaction of Krsna, or Visnu. This is the position of a mahatma. If one is not a mahatma, he is a duratma, or a cripple-minded person. Such mentally crippled duratmas are put under the control of the Lord's external potency, mahamaya.
Indeed, all living entities within this material world are under the control of mahamaya, whose business is to subject them to the influence of threefold miseries: adhidaivika-klesa (sufferings caused by the demigods, such as droughts, earthquakes and storms), adhibhautika-klesa (sufferings caused by other living entities like insects or enemies), and adhyatmika-klesa (sufferings caused by one's own body and mind, such as mental and physical infirmities). Daiva-bhutatma-hetavah: the conditioned souls, subjected to these three miseries by the control of the external energy, suffer various difficulties.
The main problem confronting the conditioned souls is the repetition of birth, old age, disease and death. In the material world one has to work for the maintenance of the body and soul, but how can one perform such work in a way that is favorable for the execution of Krsna consciousness?
Everyone requires possessions such as food grains, clothing, money and other things necessary for the maintenance of the body, but one should not collect more than necessary for his actual basic needs. If this natural principle is followed, there will be no difficulty in maintaining the body.
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