Origin of the Living Entity - Part 2


Jan 25, USA (SUN) — A further response to "We Are All Originally Krishna Conscious Entities".

Bhakta Erick Johanson stated:

    Quote # 1: "This version is also supported by the previous spiritual masters."

    Quote # 2: "Therefore, according to the “no-fall” hypothesis, his condemnation to suffering continual birth and death in the material world is ultimately due to God’s arrangement and not to his own envy. “No-fall” posits an arbitrary Supreme Being."

"Version" of quote # 1 refers to the idea that nitya-siddha Manjaris, Gopis, Gopas and Surabhis of Sri Goloka Vrindavana are constantly falling from there to become polished animals of this material world. This version belongs to a brand of philosophy technically called mayavada-bhasya. Neither Supreme Lord nor His eternal nitya-siddha servants could be even touched and what to speak about being covered by maya at any time as Srila Prabhupada repeatedly taught. For Srila Prabhupada's own words confirming eternally liberated position of nitya-siddhas please reffer to the first part of my response here.

None out of our previous spiritual masters ever supported the above mentoned version. There is no Vedic Sastra accepted in either of the five Vaisnava Sampradayas that states that nittya-siddha devotees fall from the spiritual world.

I will quote verbatim the entire article by Sriman Kundali Dasa who is a good friend of mine. Article is based on words of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura from Jaiva Dharma. It was published on the internet quite sometime ago for everyone to read and "no rights were reserved".

As for "condemnation to eternal suffering by the Lord" and "an arbitrary Supreme Being", please stay tuned and the "fairness question" will be addressed below.

From Jaiva Dharma

By Kundali Dasa

These passages are culled from Chapters 15 and 16 of Jaiva Dharma by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura. They call for a very close, thoughtful reading. Anyone who gets what is explained here will find that for him or her the question of the jiva’s origins is closed once and for all.

From Chapter Fifteen:

    Vrajanatha: In the svarupa of the jiva there is no product of maya. This has to be accepted. The nature of the jiva can be influenced by maya. This I have also understood. Now I want to know if the internal potency (chit-shakti) has created the jiva by giving it the marginal nature? [Vrajanatha is asking about the conditioned souls.]
    Babaji: No, chit-shakti is the complete potency of Krishna. Whatever it manifests are all nitya-siddha objects. The jiva is not nitya-siddha; he becomes sadhana-siddha through sadhana and enjoys bliss like the nitya-siddha. The four types of sakhis of Sri Radha are nitya-siddhas; they are kaya-vyuha manifestations of Sri Radha, who is the personification of the chit-shakti.
    All the jivas have appeared from the jiva-shakti of Lord Krishna. Just as chit-shakti is Krishna’s complete potency, similarly the jiva-shakti is His incomplete potency. All complete objects have appeared from the complete potency, similarly from the incomplete potency come the innumerable atomic jivas. Lord Krishna, presiding over each of His potencies, manifests His various expansions correspondingly. Presiding over the chit potency, He manifests His Krishna form and that of Lord Narayana, the Lord of Vaikuntha. Presiding over His jiva-shakti, He manifests His vilasa form of Baladeva in Vraja. Becoming situated in His maya-shakti, He manifests the three Vishnu forms-Karanadakashayi, Ksirodakashayi, and Garbhodakashayi.
    From His Krishna form in Vraja, He manifests all the chit entities. From His Baladeva form as Shesha tattva, He manifests the nitya-mukta jivas who are associates that render service in eight ways to Lord Krishna, the Sheshi tattva. Again, becoming Sankarshana as Shesha rupa, He manifests eight types of eternal associates to render service in eight ways to Sheshi, Narayana. Maha-Vishnu, an incarnation of Sankarshana, becoming situated in the jiva-shakti as Supersoul, manifests the living entities of the material world. [Note this tidbit.] All these jivas (coming from Maha-Vishnu) are disposed to maya. Until they attain the shelter of the pleasure potency (hladini shakti) of the chit world, by the mercy of the Lord, they are prone to be defeated by maya. The unlimited conditioned jivas being defeated by maya remain under the influence of her three modes. Therefore the principle is that only the jiva-shakti manifests jivas and not the chit-shakti.

Dear Vaisnavas and Vaisnavis, this last sentence means that no one here was ever in Vaikuntha, the domain of the chit-shakti, so they could then fall here. If there is any doubt about this explanation, Bhaktivinoda Thakura further writes Chapter Sixteen:

    There are unlimited jivas who are eternal associates of the Lord. In Goloka Vrindavana; they are manifested by Lord Baladeva for the service of Lord Krishna. In Vaikuntha they are manifested by Sri Sankarshana for the service of Lord Narayana, the Lord of Vaikuntha. They are eternally and blissfully engaged in the service of their worshipable Lord, always situated in their svarupa, always striving to make the Lord happy, always favorable to the service of the Lord, and always powerful with the energy of the chit-shakti. They have absolutely no relation or contact with the inert maya. Indeed they do not even know that there is an energy called maya. Because they live in the spiritual region, maya remains very far from them. They are always absorbed in the bliss of service to their worshipable Lord. They are transcendental to mundane misery and happiness and are always liberated. Their very life is love, and they have no conception of lamentation, fear, and death.

    The atomic conscious jivas, who come out like rays from Maha-Vishnu’s glance at maya, are also uncountable. Being in proximity to maya, these jivas see the variegatedness of maya. They have all the characteristics of the ordinary jivas as described before, yet because of their atomic nature they sometimes glance marginally towards the spiritual creation and sometimes towards the material creation. [Note: This glancing takes place here, because the jives under discussion have never been in the spiritual world. The use of the word "remain" two sentences ahead, indicates that they are choosing from here.] In this marginal state the jiva is weak, because he has not yet attained spiritual power by the mercy of the worshipable Lord. Out of these unlimited jivas, the ones who desire to enjoy maya remain eternally bound by maya, because of being attached to sense enjoyment. Those who engage in devotional service to the Lord go to the spiritual world getting the strength of the chit-shakti by the mercy of the Lord.

So, after this bit, Vrajanatha comes up with basically the "fairness" question. And Babaji replies. So it is important to read this next passage very carefully, to catch the drift, so to speak.

    Vrajanatha: Lord Krishna is the embodiment of mercy. Why did He make the jiva weak and thereby cause his bondage by maya? [Note: Jiva here refers only to the conditioned souls.]
    Babaji: It is right that Krishna is merciful, but He is also lilamaya, or one who performs only lila. Considering that various types of lilas will be performed under various situations, the Lord made the jiva competent for unlimited gradations of positions from the marginal state up to the topmost platform of mahabhava. To facilitate the jivas and make them firm in their competence for these various positions, He created many low levels associated with maya, which present unlimited obstacles in the attainment of the supreme bliss. These range from the lowest inert matter up to false ego. The living entities bound by maya are in ignorance of their svarupa, engaged in acquiring pleasure for themselves, and not devoted to Krishna. In this state, as much as the jiva goes down, that much more the merciful Lord-becoming manifest before him along with His associates and abode-gives him the facility to attain the ultimate destination. Those jivas who accept that facility try to achieve this highest destination. Gradually they reach the transcendental abode of the Lord and attain the exact same status as His eternal associates.

A class of "weak" jivas exists to enable the Lord, who is lilamaya, to have the full range of lila, which the Lord must have so He can be "complete." We are those "weak" jives. Without this facility He could not be said to enjoy all varieties of lila. At the same time the weak jiva has the inherent capacity to reach the apex of development by taking to devotional service. Thus, the Lord, in another aspect of His variegated lila, incarnates within the material energy to teach. As the culmination of that form of lila, the Lord comes as Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and teaches the fallen jivas the highest destination possible, the attainment of mahabhava in the mood of the gopis. Bhaktivinoda continues (take a breadth, pause, exhale, and read carefully):

    Vrajanatha: Why does the Lord give trouble to the jivas for the sake of his lila?
    Babaji: The quality of free will in the jiva is a special mercy of the Lord on them, because an inert object without free will is very insignificant. Because of this independence the jiva gains lordship over the inert material world. Misery and happiness are states of mind. What we consider misery, a person attached to it considers happiness. The end result of all types of material happiness is misery and nothing else. A man attached to sense gratification ultimately attains misery. When this misery increases then it gives rise to the desire for happiness. This desire leads to discrimination, which brings inquisitiveness. Because of inquisitiveness one attains the association of saints, which gives rise to faith. By faith one ascends the path of progression. Just as gold is purified by heating it in fire and beating it with a hammer, in the same way the jiva who is affected with the contaminations of sense enjoyment and non-devotion to Krishna is purified by putting him on the anvil of the material world and beating him with the hammer of miseries. The misery of the conditioned jiva ultimately brings him pleasure. Thus misery is an instance of the Lord’s mercy. Therefore the misery that befalls jivas as part of Krishna’s lila appears auspicious to the farsighted and miserable to the short sighted.

The Lord’s material energy is inert. No pleasure results from lila with inert matter, "because an inert object without free will is very insignificant." We see that kids playing with plastic figures personify them and imagine them to be animate, because inanimate figures are boring. So jivas are the animate figures for the Lord’s lila, and this is not some artificial imposition, because we are constitutionally His servants. We exist for His pleasure and are at His disposal. The jivas, owing to their free will, attempt to lord it over matter and the duality of misery and happiness is set in motion. This is really a state of mind, but ultimately the sense of misery leads the jiva to inquire about happiness. So misery has an important function-it serves as impetus for the weak class of jivas to take to spiritual life and become strong. The end result of material happiness is misery and the end result of misery, spanning many lifetimes (bahunam janmanam ante), is the happiness of Krishna consciousness. In this way, all aspects of lila are possible for the Lord, who is by nature lilamaya. Bhaktivinoda continues:

    Vrajanatha: The misery in the conditioned state is ultimately auspicious, yet it is painful at present. Was it not possible for the omnipotent Lord to find some other solution to this miserable process?
    Babaji: Krishna’s lila is very wonderful and of myriad types, and this is also one type of astonishing lila. The supremely independent Lord performs all types of lila; why would He not perform this type? To maintain all varieties, no lila can be abandoned. Besides, even if some other type of lila is performed, the instruments (jivas) of that lila have to accept some form of trouble. Lord Krishna is a purusha (dominant person), and an agent. All instruments (jivas) are under the will of the purusha. They are objects, or in other words, that which is acted upon by the purusha, whereas the purusha is the agent, or He who acts. Being under the will of an agent, it is natural that they will experience some misery. If that misery is ultimately pleasurable, however, then it is not misery. Why are you calling it misery? The apparent misery which nourishes Lord Krishnas lila is supremely blissful for the jiva. Abandoning the pleasure aspect of Lord Krishna, the jiva, who has free will, has accepted the misery, which comes as a result of absorption in maya. If anyone is to be blamed then that is jiva, not Krishna.

The abandonment of the pleasure aspect of Lord Krishna takes place here, because the choice is here. Sometimes devotees say that the choice was made in the marginal potency, where the jiva could see the spiritual and the material world. However this is incorrect because there is no actual domain called the marginal potency. Jiva and marginal potentcy (tatastha shakti) are identical. It is not a locality where the jiva is situated. The jiva is the marginal potency. So all these considerations leave only one clear option that creates no inconsistency with any other part of the philosophy. Jivas are here and the choice to be spiritual or material is made from here.

The unlimited and omnipotent Lord would be limited and impotent if He did not perform all varieties of lila, and He would not be supremely independent. The jivas are like the subjects that are ruled by the king, the agent. Their independence is minute, not absolute. They are under the will of the Lord and, being under another’s will, it is natural that one has misery. However, because this misery leads to pleasure it should not be taken as misery. And in any event, the choice is always open to the living entity to reject lording it over matter and accept the pleasure aspect of the Lord. Although he has never been in the nitya-lila of the Lord, and although he has been in the Lord’s material lila from a time without beginning (anadi), the choice to be in material consciousness or spiritual consciousness is made by the jiva. Hence the jiva alone is responsible for being in the bondage of karma in the material world.


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