“That abode of Mine is not illumined by the sun or moon, nor by electricity. One who reaches it never returns to this material world.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 15.6)
na tad bhāsayate sūryo
na śaśāṅko na pāvakaḥ
yad gatvā na nivartante
tad dhāma paramaṁ mama
The spiritual world is an amazing place, like one we have never witnessed in our memory. Concepts that are unfathomable exist there in perpetuity. Indeed, perpetuity itself gets preserved, stretching time and space beyond what the material brain can conceive. One way that the spiritual world is amazing is through lighting. It is always illuminated, though there is no sun.
The light comes from the transcendental body of the proprietor of that land. The term “God” is one way that we know Him, but that word is insufficient; it does not tell the whole story. He is much more than a supreme being. He has a form that is visible, provided a person has the set of eyes necessary to see it. Just as a microscope allows viewing tiny particles that otherwise seem invisible, God is smaller than the smallest, pervading every single space. And just as the binoculars help in seeing detail in objects far away in the distance, the Supreme Lord is extremely large. The image of the entire universe, also known as the virata-rupa, is one way to understand Him.
ihaika-sthaṁ jagat kṛtsnaṁ
mama dehe guḍākeśa
yac cānyad draṣṭum icchasi
“Whatever you wish to see can be seen all at once in this body. This universal form can show you all that you now desire, as well as whatever you may desire in the future. Everything is here completely.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 11.7)
The spiritual world consists of many planets, and in the highest one the proprietor is known as Krishna. This Sanskrit word means “all-attractive.” Krishna is naturally effulgent. He makes the ornaments on His body look better instead of the other way around. Another aspect of Krishna is that He never loses anything. In His land, one minus one can actually equal one. A person can have complete faith and trust in Krishna, and through His association the completeness can grow further.
These contradictory concepts do not exist in the material world, which is our home at present. It must be acknowledged, however, that the attempt is made to make truths out of contradictions, to create certainty from a paradox. As an example, we know that the number eighteen is not nine. Still, a person can think that eighteen is nine. A lawyer is so trained that they will say and do whatever they can to win the case for the client. In the court of law, they will try to make the text of the statutes in question mean something completely different, provided that the twisted meaning will favor them.
Another example in modern times is the popular story in the media. A narrative gets created off of the initial reports. These reports are just that, initial. They don’t tell everything. Then outrage from the public ensues. Later on, after a real investigation, the facts reveal that something entirely different occurred. The real story is not a cause for outrage. Yet the people who were first disturbed refuse to accept the facts. They think the fiction is the truth, and the truth fiction.
This kind of thinking is the product of maya, or illusion. The influence of maya begins from the time of birth, when the living entity takes their body to be their basis for identification. The attributes to that body change with time, so identity is also a living, breathing thing. If a person doesn’t like their identity, they can change things about it.
Despite what changes occur, the true identity remains the same. Maya prevents the living entity from seeing that they are spirit soul, transcendental to the transformation of the covering to that soul. The same type of soul is there in all creatures, large and small, moving and nonmoving. Thus there is a oneness through the variety of living conditions. Everyone in the material world is suffering from the effects of maya.
Just as the light from the body of Krishna illuminates the spiritual world, it can provide such a brightness in the material world that maya’s influence becomes nothing. The key is to find that association, cherish it, and then continue to hold on to it. Since it is so common to today equate eighteen with nine, or make adharma out of dharma, the most effective way to bring the association of the Divine is through the sound of His names: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. The name Krishna and the person Krishna are the same, an apparent contradiction worth pondering.
From initial news reports to receive,
Why later on the actual truth to believe?
Not exactly what in statute I saw,
As lawyer twisting truth in court of law.
Eighteen nine actually can be,
In Krishna’s spiritual land to see.
Holy name and person identical says tradition,
Worth pondering over this contradiction.