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Re: purpose of life

From: K.P. Sridharan (kpsrid_at_dsu.deltast.edu)
Date: Wed Nov 08 1995 - 14:02:51 PST

K.P.Sridharan

On Tue, 7 Nov 1995, Mani Varadarajan wrote:

> 
> K.P Sridharan writes:
> * But what 
> * intrigues me is that why would an all merciful Lord would create a bunch 
> * of beings only to serve Him?  
> 
> This is a good question, but the premise on which it is based is 
> a mistaken one.  First of all, contrary to what Eswar has written, we
> have not been *created* by the Lord.  We are ever existent, just 
> as he is.  There was no creation of the individual, nor can there
> be any destruction.  So there is no question of God creating us 
> to simply serve him.  It is realizing our inherent nature that
> dictates what our purpose in life is.  What is this nature, and
> what is this purpose?
>  ..........
> Certainly at the one level Krish is correct.  For most creatures,
> procreation is the highest purushaartha.  Darwin's theory attests
> to this.  However, I suspect that most people on this list believe 
> that there must be a higher good to be attained.
> 
> Suresvara, one of the chief disciples of Sankaracharya, writes
> that all creatures naturally seek to avoid pain and increase their 
> own happiness.  These are the incontrovertible facts of existence. 
> Unfortunately, most worldly happiness is fleeting, because we try to 
> seek it from subsidiary things instead of going to the source of all 
> happiness itself. The Upanishads teach us that the source and essence 
> of all happiness is Brahman, i.e., God.  Nothing in and of itself 
> causes happiness or sadness apart from Brahman; He, on the other 
> hand, is the very embodiment of Bliss.
> 
> Since by nature we all desire happiness, why look any further than
> Brahman? This is what our sampradaaya teaches.  Serving the Lord
> fits in as we realize our essential nature as seshas of Brahman, 
> mere instruments in his hands.  The service (bhavagat-kainkarya)
> results from a feeling of overwhelming love and a recognition of
> God's presence in all things everywhere, including the individual's
> very self.  Our acharyas have said that we regain our lost knowledge
> and bliss, potentially infinite but forgotten due to ignorance from 
> time immemorial.
> 
> This issue can be summarized as, ``Do we love and serve the Lord
> because he asks us to, or because we want something in return?'' 
> NO -- we do it because it is our inherent nature to do so. Recognition
> of this nature leads to the highest bliss.
> 
> Mani
> 


	I am afraid I erred while framing my question.  Bg,  2.12?  
states clearly that the Speaker  ( Lord Krishna) as well as all others 
existed always and would continue to exist in the future as well.  The 
fact that jivas existed always in the past seems to indicate that they 
were not crated as such.   This lends support to the Sri Vaishnavitic 
point of view that jivas as well as insentinents are part and parcel of 
the Lord. 

	Therefore something happened to the jivas which makes them 
experience miseries.  This is possibly due to loss of this knowledge
( BG5,2) of the eternal relatinship of the individual souls with the 
Super Soul or due to the action of Maya or due to the action of the Gunas 
which are inherent nature of materials. 

	Be that as it may, my doubt still persists.  This time I would 
put at as:  If we are part and parcel of the Lord having all His 
qualities, how is it that we were overtaken by forgetfulness or how is it 
that we were overpowered by Maya or we were currupted by the material nature?

	Possibly Forgetfulness is a nuture of Jivas?.. BG 5.  " I have 
passed thru many many births and so have you.  But I can remember all of 
them, but you can not" 

	I am just thinking aloud in my quest for a firm basis for 
Prapatti.  When one tends to be analytical as all of us are, surrender 
does not come about easily and seems to need a basis.  Helplessness is a 
basis but is not a very satisfactory one when the ego is still present.  
Thanks.