Dear Prabhujis and Matajis,
Hare Krishna! Please accept our humble obeisances! All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev!
Generally people get addicted to intoxicants, because this intoxication gives them a hallucinating experience thus making them temporarily forget the pains and miseries of their situations. But all addictions to intoxicants have their adverse effects and too much dependence on them itself becomes a source of misery for the addicts. As conditioned living entities who have come to the material world to enjoy sense gratification, we become addicts of the following coverings thus resulting in ignorance and continuation of material existence. They are nicely explained in Srimad Bhagavatam 3.20.18.
A – Anger: Constitutionally each and every living entity has minute independence and it is misuse of that minute independence to think that we can also enjoy like the Supreme Lord. This forgetfulness of constitutional position is due to anger or envy. This covering is called Taamisra and this mentality is very hard to overcome. That is why our spiritual master always refers to anger as the greatest sin and advises us to get rid of this.
D - Death is the ultimate end: This is the condition of Andha-tamisra and the atheists generally think that the body is the self and therefore everything ends with the end of the body. This conception that death is the ultimate end is killing human civilization.
D – Denying the existence of the soul: This condition of not knowing anything about the spirit soul is called Tamas. One is always thinking that this is my body and anything in relationship with my body is mine.
I - Illusion: As the bodily attachments increase, moha or the illusion of the bodily concept of life also increases and this results in fighting between families, societies and nations.
C – Complete sense gratification: The illusion makes us mad after material enjoyment and we are overwhelmed by the madness to have complete sense gratification. This is called Maha Moha.
T - Total ignorance: All the above put together keeps the living entities compact in total ignorance of the ultimate goal of life.
The therapeutic treatment for this kind of an ADDICT is another kind of addiction. That is if anyone persistently engages in hearing the topics of the Lord from Srimad Bhagavad-Gita, Srimad Bhagavatam and Caitanya Caritamrta and is actually addicted to this process, just as one becomes addicted to intoxicants, it is very easy to cross the nescience of material existence. This is wonderfully expressed by Dhruva Maharaj in Srimad Bhagavatam 4.9.11 as follows:
bhaktiṁ muhuḥ pravahatāṁ tvayi me prasaṅgo
bhūyād ananta mahatām amalāśayānām
yenāñjasolbaṇam uru-vyasanaṁ bhavābdhiṁ
O unlimited Lord, kindly bless me so that I may associate with great devotees who engage in Your transcendental loving service constantly, as the waves of a river constantly flow. Such transcendental devotees are completely situated in an uncontaminated state of life. By the process of devotional service I shall surely be able to cross the nescient ocean of material existence, which is filled with the waves of blazing fire like dangers. It will be very easy for me, for I am becoming mad to hear about Your transcendental qualities and pastimes, which are eternally existent."
Addiction to the process of devotional service cures the material addiction in the following manner:
A – Association of pure devotees: Srila Prabhupada writes that transcendental devotional service cannot be complete and cannot be relishable without the association of pure devotees. In the association of devotees, we are enlightened on the aspect that we are not the body but are spirit souls, eternal servants of Krishna. Thus we come out of the covering of Tamas - Denying the existence of the soul.
D - Devotional service: In the association of devotees, the words of Lord Krishna is fully potent and relishable to the heart and ear and this results in the incessant flow of devotional service. This devotional service results in transcendental knowledge that death is not the ultimate but the service to the Lord is eternal. Thus the covering of Andha Tamisra is broken.
D - Detachment: Detachment from material things, which is the result of unrelenting devotional service, gives us a pleasing attitude. Thus we are out of the covering of anger or envy - Tamisra.
I – Identification with our constitutional position: Getting detached from matter, we come to our real identity as spirit souls and this takes us out of the covering of illusion or Moha.
C – Complete suspension of the modes: The devotional process results in the complete suspension of the waves and whirlpools of material nature, thus resulting in uncovering the Mahamoha.
T - Termination of material existence: The ocean of material nescience is compared to a blazing fire, but complete absorption in devotional service, helps us to easily cross over the ocean of nescience.
Thus transcendental addiction alone can save us from the material addiction. Srila Prabhupada summarizes the above in his powerful statement in his purport to SB 5.6.16, "As a matter of principle, devotees should read, speak and hear Srimad Bhagavatam persistently, 24 hours daily if possible."
Thank you very much,
Yours in the service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev,
Sajjana Priya Krishna das and Vaijayantimala devi dasi
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