Why Is Material Life So Difficult

[Krishna's lotus feet]“The living entities in this conditioned world are My eternal, fragmental parts. Due to conditioned life, they are struggling very hard with the six senses, which include the mind.” (Lord Krishna, Bhagavad-gita, 15.7)

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ममैवांशो जीवलोके जीवभूतः सनातनः।
मनःषष्ठानीन्द्रियाणि प्रकृतिस्थानि कर्षति।।

mamaivāṃśo jīvaloke jīvabhūtaḥ sanātanaḥ।
manaḥṣaṣṭhānīndriyāṇi prakṛtisthāni karṣati।।

“Spoiler alert: Life is difficult. I can’t even begin to describe the mountain of responsibilities for the typical adult. There is no time for proper sleep, because I am even worrying over the next day. I want to make everyone in the family happy. Yet they seem to enjoy fighting with one another.

“If they could just cooperate a little bit, my life would be so much easier. Less stress. Fewer concerns. Instead, I am left to feel guilty over having to choose between them. Assigning priorities, whereas previously I never had to.

“Bearing these difficulties in mind, why does the situation have to be this way? Why can’t life be a little easier? More peace. From there, happiness will follow. I want to advance further, but it’s like I am stuck in quicksand.”

Shri Krishna explains that the living entities, the jiva souls, are struggling in the material world. That is the manifest place, but only for some time. There is also an unmanifest realm, but the description is not entirely accurate. That place cannot be perceived with the eyes at present, but there is substance.

It is unmanifest in that there is no destruction. No need for external lighting, either, as the proprietor is self-effulgent. He has enough teja, or splendor, to illuminate the entire area for an infinite duration.

[sunrise]In the manifest world we have the sun, but there is concern over its burning out. It must be powered by something, and if the light ever went out, so to speak, the universe would not be able to continue. Add that to the list of concerns encountered in an existence.

The struggle within the manifest realm is due to the six senses, which include the mind. A simple example helps to illustrate the problem. Turn on the television at night and watch the news broadcast. Now you are upset over a tragic event that occurred thousands of miles away. You have no control over the people or their surroundings. There is nothing you could have done to prevent the loss.

The subsequent sadness is actually due to the senses. If they had not been engaged in watching television, the struggle would be absent. The vulnerability is that the senses can be directed elsewhere. If not on the news broadcast, then the internet blog site. Perhaps a phone call with a friend. Overindulgence in intoxicants. Eating too many slices of pizza at the restaurant.

The way to change the situation from miserable to joyous is to direct the senses to the proper area. Focus the mind on transcendental topics. Learn who is the one lighting up the unmanifest realm. He is the same one teaching about the six senses, and further information is available.

Consult His direct words from the sacred text known as the Bhagavad-gita. Study His features, and learn the two central truths to happiness: God lives and we can live with Him. The manifest world is not our fixed residence. The return trip to the unmanifest is waiting to be boarded. The means of purchase for the ticket is desire.

[Krishna's lotus feet]If you want to know about the other side, if you want to go past a material existence, if you no longer wish to toggle between enjoyment and renunciation, then help will certainly arrive. The self-effulgent one sends His bona fide representative, who gives the potent formula of the maha-mantra: Hare Krishna Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.

In Closing:

With much effort to try,
Existence so difficult why?

Rather be living in peace,
And these responsibilities cease.

Truth that the senses at play,
Like news media narrative way.

Or upset over that having no control,
Connecting with Krishna best for the soul.

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