Devotional Thoughts

Control your desire – don’t satisfy it!

Control your desire – don’t satisfy it!

Lecture given by Sri Madhu Pandit Dasa
on September 11, 2014

Srimad Bhagavatam 3.12.2

sasarjagre 'ndha-tamisram
atha tamisram adi-krt
mahamoham ca moham ca
tamas cajnana-vrttayah


Brahma first created the nescient engagements like self-deception, the sense of death, anger after frustration, the sense of false ownership, and the illusory bodily conception, or forgetfulness of one's real identity.


Brahma starts his secondary creation from the material elements which are already sourced by the Supreme Lord Vishnu on His direction. All of us do different works only by the mercy of the Paramatma in our heart because He permits the living entities to do anything with material energy. Brahma first created the nescient engagements like self-deception, sense of death, anger after frustration, etc. The living entity is pure consciousness, cit and as Prabhupada says, in order to facilitate something that the living entity cannot do, the material energy and the material body is created. Let us say, you want to be inside the ocean for 10 hours, we put an oxygen mask and then we go. 

Now Brahma started creating an asat body, nescience is nothing but illusory knowledge, and it is important to note that the first misconception itself is deception, forgetfulness of oneself and identification with other self. So what is the rasa of the living entity in identifying with another self? Just like you may desire to enjoy a role play, other than what you are. Let us say, a king decides; let me go out of the palace for one year in disguise. So in adopting a role play also there is ananda. The king has an intention that I shall identify myself as a citizen and see from their eyes what their problems are. Now in the material world, we are all originally servants of Krishna, but we have completely forgotten, and all of us have some identity. When I say I am a man, I the soul am connecting with that man. So the spirit soul being pure it identifies with false concepts of self. 

Everything is carried out by the three modes of material nature ahankara-vimudhatma kartaham iti manyate, so the soul and the ahankara a knot is tied. A knot is a word used in the Bhagavatam, in the heart the knot is tied. Not one, first generic ahankara, I am the product of this material world, and then you have got secondary choices. So the living entity’s first choice starts with an attitude of kama as against prema. If we want to solve the problem of the soul then we have to see where the root problem is. It is all created of our own misuse of freewill; it is only by our freewill we can solve our problem. Freewill cannot be exercised without knowledge. So by spiritual intelligence from guru, sadhu and shastra we understand all these things. The shastra says that we have got freewill first at the level of our attitude, if we choose not to enjoy independent of Krishna. The power to separate the false ego comes from there. 

You have a desire, control it, and don’t satisfy it. We are directly engaging and practicing the attitude of devotional service in all our activities that is what is designed by the acharyas, hrsikena hrsikesa-sevanam bhaktir ucyate. So what happens, automatically this false ego is separated. In the material world one engages in activities for his own intellectual body, to feel the rasa of power – I am successful in my life. We are not giving up sensual activities, we are not trying to use our intelligence and understand Bhagavad-gita or Bhagavatam. We are simply dovetailing our false ego. False ego when purified it becomes – I am servant of Krishna, now the degree of purification depends on the purity of devotional service. This body won’t work unless there is a desire. If I think I am a king I will have king’s desires. We are all trying to control our senses, we all have knowledge that we should be engaging in devotional service, we all know that our mind and body is always conditioned and going in the opposite direction for sense gratification. So where should the control be? Control should be at the level of choosing false ego, we have that power in the human form.

Let us say some desires are frustrating you, frustration comes because of the desire of the ahankara. I choose not to be a sense gratifier, I will not accept the sense object – and then there is a fight between sense object and your senses. The level of ahankara choosing, instead of cutting of the desires, there are conditioned false egos, you don’t cut desires alone, you cut the desire with the desirer. So you can become peaceful only if you detach from these false identities, self-deception. Real self-control is not at the level of mind, it is at the level of using spiritual intelligence to manage egos. Why not get consciously trained – that is what Prabhupada is teaching us. In the spiritual world that is spontaneous. 

When you associate with the right kind of people you can use your intelligence to take the good from everybody. Then controlling the senses is not an issue at all, because your identification is something else. Prabhupada says – go on acting as a servant of Krishna, one day you will ask whom am I acting for? As servant of Krishna, I live for the interest of Prabhupada and Krishna. 

(The above transcripts have been edited for better readability. However they have not been verified and confirmed by the original speaker.)

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