The Two Factors Beyond The Scope Of The Mind

[Krishna's lotus feet]“Modern scientists have stopped their brainwork by discovering the theory of uncertainty, but factually for a living being there cannot be any brain activity which is not checked by time and space limitations. A living entity is called anu, an atomic particle of the supreme soul, and therefore his brain is also atomic. It cannot accommodate unlimited knowledge. This does not mean, however, that the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Krishna, has a limited brain.” (Shrila Prabhupada, Shrimad Bhagavatam, 4.24.42 Purport)

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“Body my holding cell.” The individual spirit soul is amazing. Though infinitesimally small in size, it lights up, so to speak, bodies large and small. Both the tiny ant and the large elephant have the same animating force within. That spark is so potent that the moment its presence is absent, the previously capable body starts to decay. The change is immediate, and what was once full of life becomes lifeless.

“Some look on the soul as amazing, some describe him as amazing, and some hear of him as amazing, while others, even after hearing about him, cannot understand him at all.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 2.29)

While the soul is amazing, the body is limiting. The atomic unit is described as anu in Sanskrit. One anu inside of a material body, with many other such combinations surrounding. The material element known as the mind is used for thinking and this is also limited, namely by two factors.

1. Space

While a subtle element, we can still perceive the range of applicability of the mind. For instance, I cannot tell what you are thinking. Perhaps from past observations and my own intelligence I can make an educated guess at a particular moment. Many such guesses form the basis of scientific disciplines like sociology and psychology.

In reality, these are just art forms, as there is the issue of randomness. A person gets up at the exact same time each day for several months in a row, but one day they change up the pattern. There is no explanation. There is no rhyme or reason. The difference is attributed to randomness.

The mind cannot travel to distant places. It is limited to the local space, i.e. the body. Running, walking, travelling – any type of movement is limited in the same way. The mind also cannot comprehend the concept of infinite space. Travel as far as possible in one direction, but know that there is never an end. Barriers surely exist, but there is always some space on the other side.

2. Time

In Sanskrit time is known as kala. The word is synonymous with death. As time heals all wounds, it also erases everything auspicious. What goes up must come down. For the tree the reversal is after thousands of years, for the fly perhaps a day, and for the human being maybe one hundred years.

The mind has difficulty understanding past, present and future. What existed before is no longer around. What is here today may not be here tomorrow. There is no end to the future, as once you reach a certain point there is something beyond, as well.

The same applies for the past. Science theorizes as to what existed in the beginning, what caused the amazing intelligence evident in the nature in which we live. Even if the conditions at the beginning were known, the issue remains of the past from there. Something existed even before the beginning.

In this area the only real answers come from spiritual life, i.e. that which is not material. Indeed, one way to understand the Deity is through the conduits of time and space. God is beyond the limitations of the human mind. He is not bewildered by time and space, for He creates both.

[Vamanadeva]He is paramanu, or the supreme atomic unit. While the anu is local and individual, paramanu is singular and all-pervading. In this way God hears and sees everything. He is the great witness. He is never limited by the body. He can lift a giant hill in the form of a child and hold it up with His pinky finger. He can cover the three worlds with three paces while within the form of a dwarf. He is the greatest in size, also, in the universal form.

The limited should understand and serve the unlimited. That is the benefit to receiving such knowledge. Otherwise the exercises are merely academic. Yes, I am limited by time and space, but what should I do now? Should I forget the fact and simply enjoy the senses? Should I try to reverse the laws of nature and strive to become unlimited myself?

[Krishna's lotus feet]The unlimited helps the limited by protecting their service. He ensures that the work they do for Him does not go to waste. Though death arrives regardless, the destination for the devoted soul is vastly different from the person who desires to maintain their competition with time and space. The shelter of the Divine is such that the limited can become unlimited by practicing the inexhaustible and eternal engagement known as devotional service. They start this practice very easily while within the temporary body by chanting the holy names: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.

In Closing:

Material with limitations to find,

Like even with most intelligent mind.

How to go beyond space,

Or into original past to chase?

Infinite, thus not possible so,

Only Supreme Lord to know.

Better that His lotus feet serving,

Instead of in aimless directions diverging.

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