Love, not Fear

Why “Fear of God”? Why not “Love of God”? Why fear when you can love instead? How can we transform fear to love?

It’s a fact that many religious systems are based on fear, “do this or you will go to hell”, “listen to me or eternal damnation”, “believe this or the unending eternal fires for you”.

Some are less dire, more business-like “If you displease God, then God will punish you for your sins”. Quid pro quo.

But God is not a bully. God is not insecure. God is not a sadist. God is not even a business-person!

God is Full of Knowledge, Full of Bliss, and is Eternal. No person who has those qualities can be petty, shortsighted, or vindictive.

īśvaraḥ paramaḥ kṛṣṇaḥ
sac-cid-ānanda-vigrahaḥ
anādir ādir govindaḥ
sarva-kāraṇa-kāraṇam

Kṛṣṇa who is known as Govinda is the Supreme Godhead. He has an eternal blissful spiritual body. He is the origin of all. He has no other origin and He is the prime cause of all causes.

https://www.vedabase.com/en/bs/5/1

God is also our emanator, which makes Him our caretaker practically. Which parent wants their offspring to suffer eternally?

ईश्वर: सर्वभूतानां हृद्देशेऽर्जुन तिष्ठति ।

भ्रामयन्सर्वभूतानि यन्‍त्रारूढानि मायया ॥ ६१ ॥

īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ

hṛd-deśe ’rjuna tiṣṭhati

bhrāmayan sarva-bhūtāni

yantrārūḍhāni māyayā

The Supreme Lord is situated in everyone’s heart, O Arjuna, and is directing the wanderings of all living entities, who are seated as on a machine, made of the material energy.

https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/18/61/

Schools and Universities give additional attempts, more chances to students who failed to make the grade. The judicial systems of many countries grant bail, parole, or pardon, in other words, a chance to live life inspite of having made mistakes.

So why on earth do most religious systems and their adherents relate to God in fear? Why are people “God-fearing”? Why are they not “God-loving”?

It is in part because most people know what is sinful and yet do not stop committing that sin. That is like a criminal who knows what they are doing is wrong but persists.

Yes, God is powerful, and God is practically distant, unknown even, to a materially conditioned soul. So, it may be somehow natural to fear this entity that has power over life and death. But remember, the jaws of a cat are death only to a mouse, they are happy and safe and comforting to her kitten.

To a criminal, the Police are to be feared. To an ordinary law-abiding citizen, the Police are no cause for fear. To many, the Police are even a cause of reassurance and/or relief.

God is Loving, and God is not very happy when the relationship is based on awe and reverence.

itīdṛk sva-līlābhir ānanda-kuṇḍe 

sva-ghoṣaṁ nimajjantam ākhyāpayantam 

tadīyeṣita-jñeṣu bhaktair jitatvaṁ 

punaḥ prematas taṁ śatāvṛtti vande

By such childhood pastimes as this He is drowning the inhabitants of Gokula in pools of ecstasy, and is revealing to those devotees who are absorbed in knowledge of His supreme majesty and opulence that He is only conquered by devotees whose pure love is imbued with intimacy and is free from all conceptions of awe and reverence. With great love I again offer my obeisances to Lord Damodara hundreds and hundreds of times.

Sri Damodarashtakam, Verse 3 (Padma Purana, spoken by Satyavrata Muni)

The origin of fear is in lust actually, because fear is an unavoidable factor of life in the material world, or more specifically, life in material consciousness.

It is lust that has brought us into this material nightmare and lust that keeps us here. When we can transform that lust into pure love we become liberated from the pangs of this material existence.

Sankarshan Das Adhikari, Transforming Lust into Love

Lust means we want, gimme, gimme, gimme. What do we do when we really love someone? We serve them. And we don’t badger them for this, that, and the other. Instead, we just love them, cherish them, and serve them.

Yes, God is Great, but He is also incredibly Sweet and Loving. What can we do to actually Love God?

NO FEAR!

Love or Lust, take your pick

Radha Krishna, our Best Friend and Supreme Well-Wisher

Love, Love, Love!

Who doesn’t want to love and who doesn’t want to be loved!

Much desired, much discussed, fantasized about, hankered for, in songs, literature, poetry, even science.

Here is what a great saint says about Love:

ātmendriya-prīti-vāñchā — tāre bali ‘kāma’
kṛṣṇendriya-prīti-icchā dhare ‘prema’ nāma

The desire to gratify one’s own senses is kāma [lust], but the desire to please the senses of Lord Kṛṣṇa is prema [love].https://vedabase.io/en/library/cc/adi/4/165/

Looking at it deeper, it means that whenever one desires someone or something for one’s own pleasure, that is not Love, that is Lust.

When we reflect on everything that has been given to us, air, water, this body, the ability to reflect, consciousness, the freedom to act, sunshine, food, and relationships… everything under the sun and beyond, we see that the source of it all deserves gratitude, and Love.

Krishna is the name for that Supreme Source, and Allah, Jehovah, Buddha, Rama, Yahweh, all refer to that one Supreme Soul, the Source of Everything that exists.

It is alright if you take exception to the above statement and disagree with me there. No matter what your own nomenclature for the Single Supreme Source of All is, whether it be Allah, Christ, Jehovah, Buddha, or some other name… When you try to gratify that Supreme Being’s senses, that is Love, and everything else is merely Lust.

All those love songs, all of those poems and ballads, dramas and theatre, perfumes and fantasies, they are actually of Love only when directed to the Supreme Divine, and lust otherwise.

I had a wonderful experience of this, traveling once with a sincere, loving, generous and humble saint, His Holiness Amala Bhakta Swami, from Toronto to Los Angeles, and he was clearly in ecstasy about something he was listening to. When I looked at him inquiringly, he took out one of his ear buds connected to his phone, and gave it to me… and he pressed play, I heard this song for the very first time in my life…

Unforgettable, that’s what you are
Unforgettable though near or far
Like a song of love that clings to me
How the thought of you does things to me
Never before has someone been more

Unforgettable in every way
And forever more, that’s how you’ll stay
That’s why, darling, it’s incredible
That someone so unforgettable
Thinks that I am unforgettable too

Unforgettable in every way
And forever more, that’s how you’ll stay
That’s why, darling, it’s incredible
That someone so unforgettable
Thinks that I am unforgettable too

-Nat King Cole (also performed by Barbara Streisand and others)

Think about this. While one can be forgiven for being carried away by temporary waves of emotion for our “TSO” – “temporary significant other” (phrase courtesy His Holiness Devamrita Swami), that song only consistently and forever makes sense when in relation to God. Because God stays in our heart and keeps us alive, gives us consciousness, even if we may have chosen to forget. Even though we may forget God, God never ever forgets us. I will never forget Amala Bhakta Swami Maharaja’s gift to me, in being able to relate everything wonderful and unforgettable back to the Supreme Divine, Krishna.

In fact, life after life, God travels in our heart, in His expansion as “Super Soul” or “Paramatma”

ईश्वरः सर्वभूतानां हृद्देशेऽर्जुन तिष्ठति । भ्रामयन्सर्वभूतानि यन्त्रारूढानि मायया ॥ १८.६१ ॥ īśvaraḥ sarva-bhūtānāṁ
hṛd-deśe ’rjuna tiṣṭhati
bhrāmayan sarva-bhūtāni
yantrārūḍhāni māyayā

The Supreme Lord is situated in everyone’s heart, O Arjuna, and is directing the wanderings of all living entities, who are seated as on a machine, made of the material energy. –https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/18/61/

No matter if a soul is in the body of a worm, an ant, a fish, a vulture, a hog, a dog, a camel, or an ass… or a human being, the Supreme Divine accompanies us all.

That is Love.

And to express affection back, and to render service to He who has never abandoned me, despicable me, who let my Best Friend and Well-Wisher down originally, and over and over again, but not again now, is worthy of my Love. Not “gimme this gimme that gimme gimme gimme” but “What can I do for you my dearest friend?”

Love or Lust, what will it be for you?

Love is what I seek to give, so please help me God.

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Controlling lust

S K, 19th May 2011

Hare Krishna

Humble obeisances to all devotees

All glories to Srila Gurudeva

All glories to Srila Prabhupada

I find it difficult to control lust.  What is the best and effective way to control lust?

Kindly advice

Humbly yours

Jagannatha dasa , 19th May 2011

Hare Krishna prabhu,

Please accept my humble obeisances.

All glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga!

All glories to Srila Prabhupada!

Please find below some advice from Srila Gurudeva on this topic.  Although they are lengthy and heavy quotes, I am sure they will be helpful when applied.  I have included the questions for context.

Question:

What Does Krishna Prescribe to Fight Lust?…

I would like to know how to fight against the greatest enemy of mankind, namely lust.  Krishna says that the senses, the mind, and the intelligence are sitting places of lust.  Even though it is 90% possible to fight against lust while we are awake and Krishna conscious, lust seems to be unconquerable while in dreams.  In sleep I utterly fail.

Your student

Answer:

Purify Your Love…

Our nature is to love.  When that love is selfish, it is lust.  When it is selfless, it is pure love.  Love become pure selfless love when it offered 100% in the Lord’s service.

It’s not that it is just 90% possible to fight lust when you are awake. It is 100% possible. Not only is it possible to fight lust. One can definitely 100% defeat lust by taking seriously to the pathway of Krishna consciousness.

When your waking consciousness is 100% immersed in Krishna bhakti, your dreaming consciousness will naturally mirror it and your dreams will be filled with thoughts of Krishna. This requires steady dedicated practice, but it most definitely attainable for those who are very serious about spiritual life.

(Thought For the Day Sep. 18th, 2006.  Q and A section.)

—–

Question: How to Control Lust?

I am really not able to control my lust, Maharaja! Please guide me properly for controlling lust (illicit sex).  I have heard that thinking about sex is also illicit sex.

Your student

Answer: Decide What You Want to Be

You simply have to decide whether you want to be human being or an animal and then act accordingly

(Thought For the Day

Dec. 18th, 2009.  Q and A section.)

—–

Question:  How Can I Give Up Lust?…

How can I give up lust?  Sometimes it is very strong desire and still there within my heart.  I really want to give up this desire and to be Krishna Consciousness. Please help me.

Your student

Answer:  Experience Genuine Pleasure on the Spiritual Platform…

Lust is a desire to enjoy the contact between your material senses and the object of the material senses in the form of a member of the opposite sex. In order for sex pleasure to be enjoyable one has to come down to the platform of identifying the body with the self. This is a false concept which prolongs one’s enslavement within the cycle of birth and death. By coming down to the bodily platform, on which there is only a perverted reflection of actual pleasure, one simply cheats himself out of factual happiness in the worst possible way. Why it is the worst way? Because there is no material pleasure greater than sex pleasure, there is nothing that reinforces the false bodily conception of the self more than sex. It causes one to very strongly identity as a male or as a female making transcendental realization impossible.

The first step in giving up lust is remember that you are not your body and that therefore sex pleasure does not actually touch the soul. You should realize that it is superficial, not real pleasure and that therefore it is tenth class pleasure at best. Remember that the first class pleasure, the real pleasure, comes from re-establishing one’s lost relationship with the Supreme Personality of Godhead. There is no pleasure anywhere in the universe that comes even close to pleasure derived at every minute by one who has awakened the dormant love of God within their heart. So if one is seeking real and lasting pleasure and satisfaction, he should know that the best pleasure and satisfaction comes from developing one’s love for God.

The next step is to experience genuine pleasure on the transcendental platform. This pleasure, once tasted, will be experienced as a higher taste, a greater pleasure, that what can be derived by any amount of material sense gratification. This pleasure can be easily experienced by one who engages himself in the sankirtana yajna, the congregational chanting of the Holy Names of God in the association of advanced transcendentalists:

Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare

Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare

(Thought For the Day Feb. 14th, 2007)

Please forgive the extra long post.

Your servant,

-Jagannatha dasa

Pranathi , 19th May,2011

Hari bol prabhujis… essential question and amazing answers… thank you very very much for enlightening us… i am sure each and every one of us suffers from the inability to control lust… by Guru’s and Krishna’s immense grace i hope that we’ll all be able to love Krishna beyond this bag of flesh and bones!

Hare Krishna!


Vraja Kishor Das , 23rd May,2011

If you have that wish to control it and that strong lust comes you

just shout

Jay Radha Madan Moahan!!!

Jay Radha Madan Moahan!!!

Jay Radha Madan Moahan!!!

and cupid will remove his piercing arrows 😉

Only by practising Krishna Consciousness you will able to purify from

lust.

Venudhari Krishna das, 24th May,2011

 Perfect Answer, Thanks Vraja Kishore Prabhu

(Conversation compiled by Sunil)