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Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru.
I would like all of you to understand, at least the seekers who are here, that the progression and fulfillment of our life is in naiṣkarmya. All of our activities are only to lead us to a level of maturity that none of these activities is necessary in order to find fulfillment. All the activities ultimately bring two outcomes – happiness and unhappiness in the mind level. Every happiness is preceded by unhappiness and succeeded by unhappiness, tell me now, whether it is worth having. Again, every unhappiness is preceded and succeeded by happiness, so is it really unhappiness; because that is the one that brings happiness to you.
If all our activities are resulting only in happiness and unhappiness, which we will in any case have, as long as we have the senses and the world objects for the senses to interact with, then is activity called for? And shall we attain anything through activities? This kind of a discrimination, this kind of an analysis – the earlier it takes place, the better. So, every activity ultimately leads to naiṣkarmya. naiṣkarmya means non-action.
Uddhava, as I told you yesterday, was asking Krishna, “Your Vedas consist of vidhi and nishedha, and you finally repudiate it, saying that the very differentiation itself is wrong. That means the entire Vedas are scratched. So I am not able to understand.” Then Krishna says, ‘Okay, depending upon the competence and maturity of each person, he will have to take to a pursuit. And the pursuit is, for the dispassionate people, simply jñāna.” What is this jñāna? That is also an activity, done in the level of the mind and intelligence. You have to listen to or read. Then reflect over, and finally sit in a place and dissolve your mental activities – nididhyāsana. Now this is the real and final pursuit. People who are not able to do it, then we give them the prop of some rituals and ceremonies.
People who do not have either dispassion or even passion for the world, for them listening to God’s stories – that is one way. Like that three types of practices are there. Then he summarizes it saying –
You can go on doing your actions until you become spiritually indifferent, until you develop and grow vairāgya. When vairāgya dawns, no religious activity is ever necessary.
tāvat - until then
karmāṇi kurvīta - Go on doing karma
na nirvidyeta yāvatā - until the mind has dispassion as a wealth.
mat-kathā - because it is śrīmadbhāgavatam, it always brings the element of bhakti. So, he says, until you develop dispassion or ... he puts an alternate, you develop an interest in listening to God stories and excellences. So, he equates dispassion to the listening to Godly stories and excellences. Now look at it the other way. What is actually God stories and excellences; something entirely different from world. When you have dispassion, you are not interested in the world. Here, you are interested in something other than the world, and that is equivalent to dispassion. In dispassion, you get distanced from the world interests. Here you are distanced, but by the means of God's stories and excellences, but the effect on the mind is the same. One is direct, other is indirect.
mat-kathā-śravaṇādau vā śraddhā yāvan na jāyate (Śrīmadbhāgavatam 11.20.9)
So the long and short of all our activities is that we should reach a state of dispassion to the perishable things of the world. Once it is developed, this jñāna is the pursuit for you. And Bhāgavata adds, "you may not have dispassion but you should have an affinity to listen to God stories and excellences.” Through the stories, through the narration, through the explanation, you will find, the mind is initially given a kind of a romantic delight in listening to the stories. Gradually through the process, the mind is enlightened repeatedly. What all things are being mentioned in Śrīmadbhāgavatam, a number of worldly elements in the way of kings, their behaviour, their greatness, their this and that, on the other hand, the excellences of God himself. Everything is given to them and that is a process of enlightenment.
So, if you read Śrīmadbhāgavatam carefully and well, you will find that you will become sufficiently enriched with a maturity that is unparalleled. You will not be a small human, but a very big and enlightened, and expanded human.
So this is the summary. Every activity ultimately is to reach a state of non-activity, that is equivalent to getting engrossed in either reading or listening to God stories, excellences, truths, principles, values and the like.
Harih Om Tat Sat. Jai Guru.