Nashvaram - Temporary

15th Jul 2020
Sudarshana devi dasi

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances. All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva.

In Srimad Bhagavatam verse 11.7.7 Lord Krishna says to Uddhava,

yad idaṁ manasā vācā cakṣurbhyāṁ śravaṇādibhiḥ
naśvaraṁ gṛhyamāṇaṁ ca viddhi māyā-mano-mayam

My dear Uddhava, the material universe that you perceive through your mind, speech, eyes, ears and other senses is an illusory creation that one imagines to be real due to the influence of māyā. In fact, you should know that all of the objects of the material senses are temporary.

The word naśvaraṁ in the above verse means 'temporary'. Our beloved spiritual master HH Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj quotes the above verse many times to awaken us to the reality that everything is 'naśvaraṁ' or temporary. Whenever someone approaches Maharaj and shares his/her miseries with them, Maharaj very lovingly would say, "This body itself is temporary. So how can miseries associated with it be permanent? Be courageous and absorb yourselves in study of Srimad Bhagavatam."

When we think that we are going to stay here permanently forever, then we will start controlling everyone around us. But the reality is neither this world, nor our ownselves, nor the people whom we are trying to control are permanent. Everything is subjected to destruction in due course of time, irrespective of the fact that whether we like it or not. For example when The World Trade centre was built in Newyork in 1970s, no one would have imagined that it would be destroyed within 3 decades. But by the powerful influence of time, the twin tower building in the trade center was destructed by terrorist attacks. In Srimad Bhagavatam Canto 1 Chapter 13 also we find Vidurji insists the same point to Dhrtarashtra that everything will be destroyed by the influence of time. In verse 1.13.20 Vidurji says

yena caivābhipanno ’yaṁ prāṇaiḥ priyatamair api
janaḥ sadyo viyujyeta kim utānyair dhanādibhiḥ

Whoever is under the influence of supreme kāla [eternal time] must surrender his most dear life, and what to speak of other things, such as wealth, honor, children, land and home.
Each of us have our own expiry date and so does all  the material assets we possess. One day we might stay in royal palace, next day we may be on the streets. Those who honour or glorify us now, would curse or criticise us the next moment. Neither friends, nor relatives stay with us forever in all our ups and downs of life, for all are controlled by time. Srila Prabhupada in the purport to the above verse, gives the nice example of how the division of Hindustan and Pakistan made so many rich landlords in either of the places to become paupers over night. At the moment our health might be in working condition and so we might be able to engage in some service. But the reality of the fact is that good health is also not a guarantee.

So what are we supposed to do after we understand that all these things are naśvaraṁ? In concluding lines of the purport of verse 1.13.20 His Divine Grace says, "Many devastations have taken place over the universes due to the influence of time, and no one could check them by any means. Even in our daily life, so many things come and go in which we have no hand, but we have to suffer or tolerate them without remedial measure. That is the result of time."

Maharaj very nicely says - "For that which has no cure, we have to endure." So whether it is problem related to our body and mind, or problem provided by others - the solution is to simply tolerate, take shelter of Holy Names and Bhagavatam and refocus our attention on serving the Supreme Lord.

Thank you very much,
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva,
Sudarshana devi dasi.