“There is a spiritual sky, where there are innumerable spiritual planets and innumerable spiritual living entities, but those who are not fit to live in that spiritual world are sent to this material world. Voluntarily we have accepted this material body, but actually we are spirit souls who should not have accepted it. When and how we accepted it cannot be traced. No one can trace the history of when the conditioned soul first accepted the material body.” (Shrila Prabhupada, Easy Journey To Other Planets, Ch 2)
Friend1: The living entity fell from the spiritual world.
Friend2: In the association of the Divine, as that is the very nature of anything within the spiritual energy, but suddenly a desire changed.
Friend1: I’ve heard two viewpoints relating to this.
Friend2: Which are?
Friend1: That the fall happened by chance.
Friend2: What’s the other?
Friend1: That nothing happens by chance.
Friend2: Haha. Let me guess. The source of both is the same?
Friend1: Yes. His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada.
Friend2: And it’s obviously contradictory to you?
Friend1: Just me? What about you?
Friend2: The first refers to an unfortunate occurrence. It’s like bad luck. “Ah, by chance I made the wrong decision.” Think of the toss of a coin. The chance is that it will land on either heads or tails.
Friend2: But when you actually toss the coin and it lands on a particular side, that is not chance. The outcome is due to a specific action. Lakshmana, the younger brother of Shri Rama, once remarked about this.
“Unseen and indefinite are the good and bad reactions of fruitive work. And without taking action, the desired fruits of such work cannot manifest.” (Lakshmana speaking to Lord Rama, Valmiki Ramayana, Aranya Kand, 66.17)
We’re not sure what the outcome to actions will be. We’re not sure how long those outcomes will manifest. But the rule is that the outcomes only occur after an initial action.
Friend1: The initial action here is the turn from the spiritual world. That led to the fall to the material world.
Friend2: Yes. The land of birth and death. The realm of forgetfulness. Like when sitting in a movie theater we intentionally forget that what is on the screen is a scripted performance, we forget God in the material world in the hopes of finding some higher enjoyment.
Friend1: Of which there is none?
Friend2: Only misery. Every victory is coupled with defeat. Success has failure. Sometimes you are up, sometimes you are down, but the guaranteed end is total destruction. No one can escape this.
Friend1: Then in the next life the cycle repeats.
Friend1: Until you get it right, where you turn consciousness towards the spiritual realm.
Friend2: Just have that consciousness while quitting the body. You don’t require anything else. Then you get the return trip to the original home.
Friend1: Alright, but aren’t you a little curious about past lives? Don’t you want to know when the first fall took place?
Friend2: Is that important to you?
Friend1: It would be nice to know. On such and such date, in such and such form, I forgot the Supreme Lord. That would be kind of cool to know.
Friend2: What would that information do for you? How would that help you?
Friend1: It would give some proof of the theory.
Friend2: Ah, I see. First off, it’s not a theory. Secondly, if someone did give you that information, how would you verify? You’d have to take their word for it, no?
Friend2: Then? What’s the issue? Take Krishna’s word for it that you were originally with Him. He is the best person to trust, established on the basis of the amazing teachings given to Arjuna, the unmatched level of compassion shown to His devotees in Vrindavana and elsewhere, and His mercy in the form of the representatives on earth who follow in a chain of succession, ensuring that everyone has a chance at reviving their original consciousness.
Friend1: Okay, I accept the authority. Don’t get me wrong. But that authority doesn’t provide specifics. That’s what I am asking about.
Friend2: Let me ask you this. Do you remember not being able to talk?
Friend1: As in from when I was a baby?
Friend1: No, I do not remember that.
Friend2: What about not being able to walk?
Friend1: Hmm. Nope. Don’t remember that, either.
Friend2: Do you need pictures confirming the fact?
Friend1: Nah. It’s easy to understand. At one point I was small. I couldn’t walk or talk. Eventually, I learned how to do those things.
Friend2: Well, it’s the same with the past lives. You and I left the spiritual world. We fell. Because we can’t remember doesn’t really matter. Even if someone showed us visual proof it doesn’t really do anything for us. Trust me, once you come to the spiritual consciousness even past events that occurred in the present lifetime will seem trivial. You’ll consider them part of your past life. That is one of the reasons why initiation with a spiritual master is considered the second birth. You’re leaving behind the life of ignorance and entering the blissful, eternal life of service to God the person.
At one time walk I could not,
But somehow proficiency I got.
To remember first talking neither,
Not important for proof of either.
Same with tale of spiritual world’s fall,
Not necessary for each past life to recall.
More important the future, to where next going,
Blessed when Krishna at death’s time knowing.