Bhagawatam 232: Maharishi Sanat-kumara preaches; those desirous of liberation should not develop attachment towards luxuries

Srikrishnāya namah

Maharishi Sanat-kumara continued. “Only when the instrument called mind functions, the individual develops awareness of his separate existence, the existence of a separate visible world perceivable by the senses and of an illumination which remains as a witness to them both. It means he experiences these three as separate existences.

In other words, due to spiritual ignorance (ajnana) differences such as -the world, the body which perceives the world and the sense of I-ness (egoism) are experienced.

During deep-sleep the mind ceases to function. At such time, these differences cease to exist. Differences of seer and seen are absent. Only when a person stands in front of a mirror, water or other objects that reflect images, he is able to see his reflection separately. At that point there are two distinct entities- his form and the reflected form. In the absence of a mirror, where is this reflected image? It will not have a separate existence. It would have merged into him.

This same principle applies to the Self. Grasses growing by the banks of a pond pull up all the water from the pond through their roots. In the similar manner, by mentally concentrating upon sensory pleasures, the senses which are attracted towards them completely steal the power of reasoning (buddhi) with the help of the mind. With this, discriminatory intelligence is totally destroyed in the person.

When discriminatory intelligence is lost, all previous memory vanishes. The person who has lost this memory forgets his original form. In other words, he loses the chance to obtain Self-knowledge. Learned scholars state that distancing from Self-knowledge is equivalent of committing suicide.

The person should not endlessly focus upon money, luxuries and other worldly attachments for he would be wasting all the four-fold goals of life (puruśārtha). He would be destroying himself. Hence such thoughts are not permitted. Such person loses the chance to obtain initiation into Self-knowledge as taught by the scriptures or attaining Self-realization. In his next birth, he will be reborn as tree or stone.

Under no circumstances should a person, who truly seeks to cross this ocean called spiritual ignorance, develop inclination towards worldly bondages. He should possess only as much as is necessary for living. He should not increase his possessions.

By developing interest towards worldly comforts, the person totally destroys the four-fold aims of life. The first three aims of life i.e. Dharma (righteousness), artha (materialistic earnings) and kāma (fulfillment of desires) are under the control of time. In other words, they are of fleeting existence. However, the ultimate aim of life i.e. liberation is eternal. It is the best among the four principles.

Devatas and other superior beings as well as animals and other lower beings originate purely due to the imbalances of the trigunas. Time destroys the desires of all beings. Therefore, none of these beings enjoy eternal well-being. (They will get destroyed).

O king, all living beings associate with the body, senses, intellect, sense of I-ness and life-force and thus take on a form consisting of them. In all such living entities, the Supreme Lord remains as a witness to the body, mind and senses.

While shining in His original form He remains as a witness that controls everything and also as a dearest friend of the individual soul. Through the principle of non-dualism (abheda jnana) the person should realize oneness with Him.

Snake and rope are different. Even then due to ignorance a snake is seen in that rope.  After understanding the real picture, the snake is no longer seen in the rope. Likewise, the world, which is made up of cause and effectual energies, inherently does not exist although it appears to exist. The moment Supreme Knowledge is obtained, the truth about its illusory existence is instantaneously grasped by the person.

The Supreme Lord is eternally liberated. He is absolutely unconnected with merits and sins. He is an embodiment of indivisible knowledge. Only the body which arises out of Nature gets tainted with the impurities called joys and sorrows. He is unaffected by them. I surrender to such Lord.

Yat-pāda-paṅkaja-palāśa-vilāsa-bhaktyā Karmāśayaṁ grathitam udgrathayanti santa

Tadvan na rikta-matayo yatayo ’pi ruddha-Sroto-gaṇās tam araa bhaja vāsudevam

Subtle impressions of all past actions exist in the form of ahamkara granthi i.e. knot of egoism. Saints are eternally devoted to the illumination emitted from the toe nails of the Lord. Due to its influence they easily cut this knot of egoism and fulfill the life’s purpose. However spiritual aspirants are unable to totally control the senses and restrain the mental modifications (thought waves). As such they are unable to easily cut this knot of egoism. Therefore, surrender to such Lord Vāsudeva and serve Him.

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