Click here to load whole tree
NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Bhaktivinoda Thakura > Jaiva Dharma > Chapter-16

Chapter Sixteen

Nitya-dharma O Sambandhabhidheya Prayojana (Prameyantar-gata Maya-kavalita Jiva-vicara)

Eternal Religion and Sambandha, Abhidheya, and Prayojana (The Individual Souls Swallowed by Maya)



     After he had heard the Dasha-mula's teachings about the individual spirit soul, Vrajanatha lay in his bed in his own home and deeply thought, " `Who am I?' that question was answered. Now I know who I am. I am an atomic particle of light shining from the spiritual sun of Lord Krishna. I am atomic in size, and therefore I possess consciousness, a spiritual identity, and a single drop of spiritual bliss. I have a form made of a tiny fragment of spirit. I am very tiny, and my form is somewhat like the moderately-sized form of Lord Krishna. I cannot see my spiritual form. That is my misfortune. That I am now very eager to see this spiritual form means that now I have become fortunate. Why did I fall into this unfortunate situation? I must understand that very clearly. Tomorrow I will place this question before Shri Gurudeva's feet. He thought about it again and again. After six hours of the night had passed, the goddess of sleep came like a thief and gradually stole away his wakefulness. When the night was ending he dreamed that he had renounced the material world and accepted the garments of a Vaishnava. When his sleep broke he thought, "Now the Lord will take me from this material life." He went to the family shrine of Goddess Durga. His students came, fell at his feet, and requested, "We have come to study logic. Please teach us the book Kusumanjali. That is our wish." Vrajanatha humbly replied, "Like Nimai Pandita, I too have closed my books. I have made my mind place its gaze on a different path. Please find another teacher." One by one, the students left. Then the matchmaker Caturbhuja Mishra visited Vrajanatha's grandmother with a proposal for Vrajanatha's marriage. He said, "Vijayanatha Bharttacarya comes in a good family. His daughter is very beautiful. She would be good for your grandson. The Bhattacarya has not yet promised his daughter to anyone." Hearing this marriage proposal, Vrajanatha's grandmother became very happy. Vrajanatha thought, "What a calamity! Now I have decided to renounce the world. How can any good come from this talking of my marriage? With Vrajanatha on one side and his mother, grandmother, and the elderly ladies of the family on the other, there was much talking about it. In that way the day passed. At sunset there were clouds, thunder, and rain. That day Vrajanatha did not go to Mayapura. The night passed. The next day there was more talk about the marriage. Vrajanatha could not peacefully take his meals or do anything else. At sunset Vrajanatha approached the elderly babaji's cottages. He offered dandavat obeisances. The saintly babaji said, "Last night it rained, so you could not come. Now I am very glad to see you." Vrajanatha replied, "O master, many calamities have fallen upon me. Later I will tell you about them. For now I will ask this question: The individual soul is pure spirit. Why does the calamity of residing in the material world fall upon him?" The saintly babaji smiled and recited this verse:



svaruparthair hinan nija-sukha-paran krishna-vimukhan

     harer maya dandyan guna-nigada-jalaih kalayati

tatha sthulair lingair dvi-vidhavaranaih klesha-nikarair

     maha-karmalanair nayati patitan svarga-nirayau



     "Covering them with gross and subtle material forms, chaining them with the modes of material nature, and pulling them with the painful ropes of karma, Maya leads to Svargaloka and to hell the criminal souls who, forgetting their own spiritual welfare, have turned from Krishna and become intent on their own happiness."


     In Goloka, which is manifested by Lord Baladeva, and in Vaikuntha, which is manifested by Lord Sankarshana, numberless individual souls are eternal associates of the Lord. There they taste the nectar of worshiping and serving the Lord. They are always inclined to spiritual things. They seek the happiness of worshiping the Lord. They are always eager to serve the Lord. Empowered by the Lord's jiva-shakti and cit-shakti, they always have great spiritual strength. They never touch Maya. They do not even know that a potency called maya-shakti exists. Staying in the middle of the circle of the spiritual world, they are very far away from Maya. They always swim in the ocean of pleasure that is worshiping and serving the Lord. They know nothing of suffering, material pleasure, or selfish pleasure. They are eternally liberated. Love for the Lord is their entire life. What are grief, death, and fear they do not know. When He glances at Maya, Lord Karanodakashayi Vishnu sends numberless atomic spirit souls to the material world. Because they are now on Maya's side, the many creations of Maya now enter the pathway of their eyes. The4se souls have all the qualities of the soul I have already described. However, because they are atomic in size, from the border of matter and spirit (tatastha) they must place their glance on either the spiritual world or the material world. The individual souls are very weak. How can this not be? These souls did not obtain the spiritual strength that comes from the Lord's mercy, mercy that comes from properly serving Him. That is why these souls develop a desire to enjoy the pleasures that Maya offers. These souls enter Maya's world, and there Maya imprisons them for what seems an eternity. When these souls again turn to spiritual life and service to the Lord, they can attain the Lord's mercy, which will give them spiritual strength. Then they can return to the spiritual world. Baba, I am very unfortunate. I have forgotten that I am eternally a servant of Lord Krishna. I have entered Maya's world, and here Maya keeps me imprisoned. I have forgotten my own spiritual welfare. I am very unfortunate!


     Vrajanatha: O master, why did some souls leave the borderline of matter and spirit and enter the world of Maya? Why did other souls go to the spiritual world?

     Babaji: Lord Krishna's own qualities are present in a very small degree in the individual spirit souls. Because Lord Krishna has free will, so the individual souls eternally possess a small quantity of free will also. When that free will is used properly, the individual soul is favorable to Krishna and turns toward Him. When the free will is misused, the soul is averse to Krishna and turns away from Him. Then the soul tries to enjoy Maya. Puffed up with petty pride, the soul thinks, "I am the enjoyer of matter." Then the pure spiritual form of the soul becomes covered by the five kinds of ignorance that begin with illusion and false-ego. Thus is is the proper or improper use of free will that bring us either liberation or imprisonment in the material world.

     Vrajanatha: Lord Krishna is supremely merciful. Why, then, did He make the individual spirit souls so weak that they fall into Maya's world?

     Babaji: As He is merciful, so Krishna is also playful. Desiring many different kinds of pastimes with individual spirit souls in many different conditions of life, He created many exalted conditions, which culminate in "maha-bhava" (great ecstatic spiritual love for the Lord), and He also created, with the help of Shri Radha's expansion Maya, the degraded material conditions of life, which reach their nadir in "ahankara" (the soul's misidentification with matter). In this way, by the influence of Shri Radha there is the attainment of limitless transcendental bliss, and by the influence of Maya there is a descent into the lower depths. The souls that thus enter Maya's abyss are not interested in their own spiritual well-being. They are averse to Lord Krishna and interested in their own selfish pleasure. Thus they go down lower and lower. However, supremely merciful Lord Krishna sends His own personal associates from His own spiritual world into the material world to make these souls favorable to Him and to lift them out of the abyss. In this way some of the fallen souls gradually become elevated and eventually return to the spiritual world, where they become eternal associates of the Lord.

     Vrajanatha: Why must the individual souls suffer so the Lord can enjoy pastimes like these?

     Babaji: What should be said is this: It is by the great mercy of the Lord that the individual souls have free will. Why not speak in that way? Inanimate matter is very lowly and unimportant because it has no free will. It is because they have free will that the individual souls can become masters of the world of matter. "Pain" and "pleasure" are two destinations the mind can attain. What you and I may call “pain", another person, who is attached to it, may call “pleasure". All material pleasures bring only pain at the end. They do not lead to anything but that. Therefore a person attached to material pleasures becomes unhappy at the end. When that unhappiness becomes very acute, the soul begins to desire happiness that is not mixed with sufferings. From that desire comes intelligence, and from that intelligence comes the spirit of inquiry. From the spirit of inquiry comes association with saintly persons, from association with saintly persons comes faith in spiritual life, and from faith in spiritual life one becomes gradually elevated. In this way what began as pain became at the end the giver of auspicious happiness. When it is heated and burnished, impure gold becomes pure. In the same way, when they suffer in Maya's material world, the impure souls averse to Lord Krishna and yearning to enjoy maya become purified. That this suffering turns into the giver of happiness is the mercy of Lord Krishna. Therefore they who are far-sighted see that these sufferings of the conditioned souls eventually bring auspicious happiness. They are are short-sighted cannot see that. They see only sufferings.

     Vrajanatha: Although they may bring happiness at the end, for the present the conditioned souls' sufferings are very painful. Could not the all-powerful Lord invent a different path, one without these sufferings?

     Babaji: Lord Krishna enjoys many different kinds of wonderful pastimes. This is one of His wonderful pastimes. A person who is supremely independent can enjoy many different kinds of pastimes, and this may be one of them. Why not? If the Lord has every kind of pastime, then no pastime may be rejected. If one pastime is substituted for another, then still some kind of troubles must be expected. Lord Krishna is the supreme person and the creator. Everyone is subject to His will. If one person is subject to another's will, is there not some difficulty in that? If that difficulty eventually leads to happiness, then it is no difficulty at all. Why do you say it is suffering and difficulty? If to expand Lord Krishna's pastimes the individual souls go through some difficulties, the difficulties are only happiness. Lord Krishna's pastimes are naturally full of bliss. If an individual soul of his own free will voluntarily leaves those pastimes and enters the world of Maya and accepts the sufferings there, then if anyone is at fault it is the individual soul who is at fault. Krishna is not at fault.

     Vrajanatha: In that situation, what is the harm that Lord Krishna does not give the soul free will? Krishna knows everything. Therefore Krishna knows if a certain soul will misuse his free will and bring suffering to himself. In that situation it is cruel of Krishna to give such a person free will. Is it not?

     Babaji: Free will is a precious jewel. In the material world there are many inanimate material objects. None of them were given the jewel of free will. That is why inanimate objects are lowly and unimportant. If he had not been given free will, the individual soul would be lowly and unimportant, just like inanimate objects. The individual soul is a tiny particle of spirit. Whatever qualities spirit has, the soul must also have. Free will is one of the qualities of spirit. Spirit can never be separated from its eternal qualities. Therefore, as a tiny particle of spirit, the soul must have free will. It is because they have free will that the individual souls are superior to inanimate matter and are the masters of the material world. The souls, who all have free-will, are all the dear servants of Lord Krishna. When they misuse that free will and enter the world of maya, merciful Krishna weeps to see how they are suffering. Eager to deliver them, He follows the individual souls into the material world. Aware that the souls will not see His nectarean pastimes in the material world, He brings His inconceivable pastimes there. Seeing that the conditioned souls do not understand His pastimes, he descends to Navadvipa and teaches them about His form, qualities, and pastimes, and about His own holy name, which is the best way for spiritual advancement, and He also teaches them by acting the role of His won devotee. baba, how can you place the blame on merciful Krishna? Even though His mercy is fathomless, you remain unfortunate and very pathetic.

     Vrajanatha: Is the maya-shakti then our enemy and the cause of our misfortune? Krishna is all-powerful and all-knowing. If Krishna had driven Maya far away, then the individual souls would not have to suffer.

     Babaji: Maya is the reflection of the Lord's internal potency. She is a perverted manifestation of the Lord's pure spiritual potency. She purifies the criminal rebellious souls. She gives them a way to reform themselves. maya is a maidservant of Lord Krishna. She punishes the souls averse to Lord Krishna. She gives them medicine and cures them. By forgetting "I am eternally a servant of Lord Krishna", the individual souls commit a crime. They are at fault. It is because of this crime that the witch Maya punishes them. These criminal souls are sent to the prison that is the world of Maya. As it is out of kindness that a king sends criminal to prison, so it is out of kindness that Lord Krishna sends these criminal souls to the prison of the material world and placed Maya there as the warden.

     Vrajanatha: If the material world is a prison, then what are the shackles?

     Babaji: maya's shackles are of three kinds: 1. shackles made of the mode of goodness, 2. shackles made of the mode of passion, and 3. shackles made of the mode of ignorance. The criminal souls are  The criminal souls are bound with these shackles in different appropriate ways. Some souls may be bound with goodness shackles, others with passion shackles, and others with ignorance shackles. All are shackled. There may be golden shackles, silver shackles, or iron shackles. Shackles made of different elements do not cease to be shackles.

     Vrajanatha: How can the shackles of Maya bind the soul, which is an atomic particle of spirit?

     Babaji: Material things cannot touch spiritual things. When an individual soul gets the idea "I am the enjoyer of Maya", the subtle covering of material ego is placed around him. Covered in this way by subtle matter, his feet are bound with the Maya's shackles. The individual souls covered with material ego in the mode of goodness are the demigods residing in the higher material planets. Their feet are bound with the golden shackles of the mode of goodness. The individual souls covered with material ego in the mode of passion have a nature that is a combination of the natures of the demigods and the human beings. Their feet are bound with the silver shackles of the mode of passion. The individual souls covered with material ego in the mode of ignorance are intoxicated by material pleasures. Their feet are bound with the iron shackles of the mode of ignorance. None of these shackled souls can leave the prison. All are troubled by many kinds of sufferings.

     Vrajanatha: What activities are done by the souls in Maya's prison?

     Babaji: Firstly they do what they can to enjoy material pleasures, and secondly they do what they can to avoid or negate the sufferings that come from the shackles they wear.

     Vrajanatha: Please describe to me the first of these actions.

     Babaji: The sthula-sharira is the gross material body covering the soul. It has six stages of existence: 1. the birth of the material body, 2. its maintenance, 3. its decline, 4. its growth, 5. its change, and 6. its dissolution. The gross material body undergoes these six changes. Hunger, thirst, and other like desires are also part of the material body's nature. Pushed by the desire for material pleasures, the soul within the material body becomes an obedient servant of eating, sleeping, associating with women, and other material activities. To attain material pleasures he performs the ten pious rituals that begin with birth and end on the funeral pyre. He performs the eighteen kinds of yajnas described in the Vedas. He hopes, "By following the path of pious deeds (karma), I will enjoy with the demigods in Svargaloka. When I again enter the human realm, I will take birth in a brahmana's home and I will enjoy many happinesses." Or, the imprisoned soul may follow the impious path. By performing many sins, he enjoys sense pleasures. By the first course of action one attains Svargaloka and other higher material planets. Then, when his period of enjoyment ends, the soul again attains a human body. By the second course of action one goes to hell because of his many sins. When his period of suffering ends, the soul again attains a human body. In this way the soul imprisoned by Maya travels on the wheel of karma. Day after day he struggles to enjoy material pleasures and he tastes the fruits of his actions. Thus, beginning at a time he cannot trace, the soul wanders in the material worlds. By performing pious deeds, he briefly enjoys, and by performing sins, he briefly suffers.

     Vrajanatha: Now please describe the second kind of action.

     Babaji: Caught in a trap of many needs, the soul in a gross material body suffers. To drive away these sufferings, he acts in many ways. To drive away hunger and thirst, he struggles to get food and drink. So these things may come easily, he labors to collect money. To drive away the cold, he collects clothing. To stop the thirst for sense pleasures he becomes married and he performs many other activities also. To fill the needs and increase the happiness of his family and descendants, he labors hard. When the gross material body is attacked by disease, he must find medicines or other ways to cure it. To protect his property he enters disputes in the law courts. Tossed about by the six waveslust, anger, greed, bewilderment, pride, and envyhe engages in fighting, argument, violence to others, tormenting others, robbing others' wealth, cruelty, senseless pride, and a host of other evil deeds. So he can live independently, he builds his own house and performs other deeds. In this way the soul in Maya's prison struggles day and night to attain pleasure and stop distress.

     Vrajanatha: Had Maya only covered the soul with the linga-sharira (subtle body), would that not have been enough?

     Babaji: No. With just the linga-sharira, no one can perform actions. Therefore the covering of the sthula-sharira (gross body) is necessary. Following the results of actions performed by the sthula-sharira, various desires are created in the linga-sharira. Following these desires, (at the time of his next birth) the soul attains an appropriate new sthula-sharira.

     Vrajanatha: What is the relationship between actions and the results they bring? The mimamsa philosophers say that God, who awards the results of actions, is only a fiction, that every action produces something called an "apurva", and this "apurva" gives the result of the action. Is this true?

     Babaji: The followers of karma-mimamsa do not understand the true conclusion of the Vedas. Quickly glancing at the Vedic yajnas and other pious deeds, they come to a hasty conclusion. The true conclusion of the Vedas they do not grasp. The Vedas explain (Shvetashvatara Upanishad (4.6 and Mundaka Upanishad (3.1.1):



dva suparna sayuja sakhaya

     samanam vriksham praishasvajate

tayor anyah pippalam svadv atty

     anashnann anyo 'bhicakashiti



     "In the individual spirit soul and the Supersoul, Supreme Personality of Godhead, are like two friendly birds sitting on the same tree. One of the birds (the individual atomic soul) is eating the fruit of the tree (the sense gratification afforded by the material body), and the other bird (the Supersoul) is not trying to eat these fruits, but is simply watching His friend.*


     Where is there any mention here of the mimamsa philosophers' "apurva"? Any conclusion that denies the existence of God cannot be good.


     Vrajanatha: Why did you say that karma has no beginning?

     Babaji: Material desire is the root from which all karma (fruitive action) grows. Ignorance is the root from which material desire grows. That ignorance did not begin within the boundaries of material time. The ignorance that is the root of the individual soul's karma begins at the borderline of matter and spirit (tatastha). Therefore the beginning of karma occurs outside the framework of material time. In that sense karma has no beginning.

     Vrajanatha: What is the difference between "maya" and "ignorance"?

     Babaji: Maya is Lord Krishna's potency. Using this potency, He created the material world to purify the rebellious souls. Maya has two features: "avidya" (ignorance) and “pradhana" (the primordial form of matter). Avidya directs her efforts to the individual souls, and pradhana directs its efforts to inanimate matter. From pradhana the material universes are manifested. From avidya the material desires of the conditioned souls are manifested. Maya also has two other features: "vidya" (knowledge) and "avidya" (ignorance). These two both direct their efforts to the individual spirit souls. Avidya keeps the souls imprisoned in the material world, and vidya releases them from that prison. When the criminal souls turn toward Lord Krishna, the vidya potency acts on them, and when the criminal souls forget Krishna, the avidya potency acts. Knowledge of Brahman is a specific feature of vidya. The first phase of vidya is pious deeds, and the concluding phase is understanding the truth. Avidya covers the soul and vidya uncovers him.

     Vrajanatha: What does pradhana do?

     Babaji: In the beginning the Supreme Lord employs time to agitate the material energy. In this way the mahat-tattva is produced. Agitated in this way, Maya's feature called "pradhana" creates things. From the mahat-tattva, the false-ego is manifested. When false-ego is transformed by ignorance, the sky is manifested. From the sky, air is manifested. From air, fire is manifested. From fire, water is manifested. From water, earth is manifested. In this way the five material elements, which are called "panca-maha-bhuta", are manifested. Now please hear how the five "tan-matras" are created. When time agitates avidya (ignorance), jnana (knowledge of the impersonal) and karma (fruitive action) are manifested from the mahat-tattva. From the karma thus manifested from the mahat-tattva, the modes of goodness and passion are manifested, and from them come jnana (knowledge) and kriya (action). From the mahat-tattva, false-ego is manifested. From false-ego, intelligence is manifested. From intelligence, The quality of sound is perceived in the sky. From sound comes touch. Thus sound and touch are manifested the air. From them come "prana" (the life-force), "ojah" (energy) and "bala" (strength). In fire are manifested form, touch, and sound. Then, by the transformation created by time, water is manifested. In water are taste, form, touch, and sound. A further transformation brings earth, in which are fragrance, taste, form, touch, and sound. The all-knowing purusha-avatara helps these changes become manifested. False-ego has three features: "vaikarika" (goodness), "taijasa" (passion), and "tamasa" (ignorance). From false-ego in the mode of goodness, material objects are manifested. From false-ego in the mode of passion, the ten material senses are manifested. There are two sets of senses: knowledge-acquiring senses, and working senses. The knowledge-acquiring senses are: eyes, ears, nose, tongue, and skin. The working senses are: voice, hands, feet, genitals, and rectum. Even when the gross and subtle elements are assembled together, nothing can happen until the individual soul, the tiny particle of spirit, enters. With a glance, the Supreme Personality of Godhead places the individual soul in the body of gross and subtle elements, and only then does the body begin to move. In this way the senses manifested by the modes of goodness and passion come into contact with the sense-objects the pradhana has manifested through the mode of ignorance. In this way avidya and pradhana act. Maya is divided into twenty-four categories: the five great elements, namely earth, water, fire, air, and sky, the five tan-matras, namely fragrance, form, taste, touch, and sound, the previously described ten knowledge-acquiring and working senses, and, in addition to these, mind, heart, intelligence, and false-ego. Altogether these are the twenty-four categories of matter. The conscious individual spirit soul is the twenty-fifth category in the body, and the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Supersoul, in the twenty-sixth.

     Vrajanatha: In the human body of seven spans, what part is the subtle body, what part the gross body, and where in the body does the spirit soul reside? Please tell me.

     Babaji: The sthula-sharira (gross body) consists of the five gross elements (panca-maha-bhuta), five sense objects (panca-tan-matra), and the ten senses. The linga-sharira (subtle body) consists of the mind, heart, intelligence, and false-ego. The individual spirit false falsely thinks of this material body in terms of "I" and "mine". In this way he does not understand how his own welfare is best served. The soul, a tiny fragment of spirit, exists in a dimension beyond time, space, and the other features of the material world. Even though it is a tiny particle, the soul is all-pervading within the material body. As a tiny drop of sandal-paste cools the entire body, so the soul, situated in one place within the material body, is aware of the pleasure and pains of the body as a whole.

     Vrajanatha: If by his actions (karma) the individual soul creates his own pleasures and sufferings, what does the Supreme Personality of Godhead do?

     Babaji: The individual soul is the immediate cause, but the Supreme Personality of Godhead is the ultimate cause. By his various actions, the individual soul makes himself qualified to receive various results. However, he does not have the power to simply take them. All results must be given to him by the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the ultimate cause. The Supreme Personality of Godhead gives the results, and the individual spirit soul receives them.

     Vrajanatha: Through what different stages of life do the the souls imprisoned by Maya pass?

     Babaji: The souls imprisoned by Maya in a gross material body pass through five stages of existence. They are: “acchadita-cetana" (covered consciousness), “sankucita-cetana" (retracted consciousness), “mukulita-cetana" (budding consciousness), “vikacita-cetana" (blossoming consciousness), and "purna-vikacita-cetana" (fully blossomed consciousness).

     Vrajanatha: Which souls are in the stage of covered consciousness?

     Babaji: The souls who reside in the bodies of trees, grass, and stones are in the stage of covered consciousness. They are close to being unconscious. Forgetting that they are servants of Krishna, they have entered deeply into the realm of matter. They have no understanding of spirit. All they know is the six changes of material life. This is the lowest depth to which the soul can fall. Ahalya, the yamalarjuna trees, and the seven tala trees are some examples the Puranas give of souls in this stage of existence. Great offenses push souls into that state, and Lord Krishna's mercy delivers them.

     Vrajanatha: Which souls are in the stage of retracted consciousness?

     Babaji: Animals, birds, snakes, fish, other water-creatures, worms, and insects are examples of the beings with retracted consciousness. The beings with covered consciousness exist on the verge of being unconscious. The beings with retracted consciousness have their consciousness a little opened. That consciousness is directed toward eating, sleeping, fearing, and bustling to and fro to fulfill a host of desires, arguing with others over property claims, and anger when someone is wronged. However, that consciousness remains unaware of the existence of a world beyond the circle of matter. Monkeys may be mischievous, may give some thought to understanding the way things work, by thinking "This will happen, and that will not happen", may plan for the future, and may show signs of gratefulness and other like feelings. Some animals have knowledge of the different properties of various objects. However, the animals to not search to find God. Therefore their consciousness is said to be retracted. In the scriptures it is said that the great devotee Bharata took birth as a deer and in that condition he was fully aware of the holy names of the Supreme Lord. However, Bharata was a special case. In general, animals do not have spiritual knowledge. Because of offenses, Bharata and Nriga became animals, but then by the mercy of the Supreme Lord, they again attained an auspicious condition of life.

     Vrajanatha: Which souls are in the stage of budding consciousness?

     Babaji: Conditioned souls in human bodies display three stages of consciousness: budding consciousness, blossoming consciousness, and fully blossomed consciousness. There are five kinds of human beings: immoral people, atheists who follow moral principles, people who believe in God and follow moral principles, people engaged in practical devotional service (sadhana-bhakti), and people engaged in loving devotional service (bhava-bhakti). Thus the categories are: people who because of ignorance or because of improper knowledge become atheists, the immoral people, the moral atheists, the moral people who have a little faith in God, the people who believe in God, the people who, following the rules of the scriptures, engage in sadhana-bhakti (devotional service in practice), and the people who have attained love for God and thus engage in bhava-bhakti. The immoral people and the two kinds of atheists are situated in the stage of budding consciousness. The people who believe in God and the people engaged in sadhana-bhakti are situated in the stage of blossoming consciousness, and the people engaged in bhava-bhakti are situated in the stage of fully blossomed consciousness.

     Vrajanatha: For how many days do the souls situated in bhava-bhakti continue to stay in Maya's prison?

     Babaji: This question is answered in the seventh verse of the Dasha-mula. Now it is night. You should go home.


     Thinking and thinking, Vrajanatha returned home.