By Satyanaryana Dasa Part 1: The Nature of Ātmā - Different schools of Indian philosophy and theology present different doctrines regarding the agency, enjoyership and knowership of ātmā, the individual self. Among them, the Vedānta schools accept the authority
Advaita-vādīs raise an objection to this necessity of accepting illuminating power (dharma-bhūta jñāna) as a quality possessed by ātmā: “Consciousness (jñāna) cannot be the... Read More
The sixth verse will make it clear that the cause of the ātmā’s union with prakṛti is his own inclination towards and infatuation with... Read More
By Satyanarayana Dasa: This article describes the nature of the individual living being (jīva). It is based on a commentary on verses three through seven of the 26th Chapter of the Third Canto of Śrīmad Bhāgavatam by Śri Vīrarāghava Ācārya of the Śrī-sampradāya. I have included my own explanatory statements where required.
Two years ago I experimented with something I had been deliberating on for many years. Along with twelve of my students, I rented a house in Switzerland for a week in the summer and engaged in japa meditation as described in bhakti shastra. There was no contact with the outside world, (i.e. no phone or internet) and we cooked our own food. The results were very encouraging.
Sometimes it is suggested that the jīva falls due to being envious of Kṛṣṇa. But as declared earlier, māyā is not present in Vaikuṇṭha, so from where could such envy arise? In Bhagavad Gītā 13.7, the Lord says that hatred, or envy, is connected to the material body.
Teaching is an art. An expert teacher is one who educates in such a way that the students embrace the teaching as their own, without confusion or degradation. The conditioned souls, being unaware of any other reality, do not aspire to become free of the material world, but would rather be happy in this life, or at best, in some future heaven. Yet a compassionate teacher is moved to help relieve them of their material identification.