No eternal damnation

In many of the world’s religious traditions, there is the concept of eternal damnation… you know, do this, follow that, believe this, till the end of your life, or else, ETERNAL DAMNATION IN HELL FOR YOU!

That sort of fear mongering worked for some time… like with all things that are born in fear, they work on some people all the time, on all people for some time, but not on all people for all time.

People eventually tune that stuff out – with or without the help of the dogmatic religion called atheism.

The problem with eternal damnation is clear when we consider this…

  1. Our legal and constitutional systems have pardons built into them.
  2. Schools and Universities allow failed students to eventually pass.
  3. Even humans, imperfect humans, forgive.

So, something that us fallible humans can construct, police forces, courts, schools, universities… can actually be more merciful, more tolerant, more forbearing than God?

So, does it mean that God, the source of all that be, the Alpha, the Omega, the Origin of the Universe, doesn’t possess the quality of tolerance or forgiveness?

Is God some angry old man sitting around passing judgement and taking delight in making someone suffer eternally in the hellish regions? Is God a sadist?

Having been introduced to such an idea of God, would you blame a reasonable person for turning to atheism?

Nonsense! Eternal Damnation is a myth.

Let me say that again – Eternal damnation does not exist.

Once more – Eternal damnation is a tall tale, told by insecure religious leaders looking to control their flock with fear and intimidation.

But Eternal Damnation? Doesn’t exist, not true, false.

In the Gita, we find this verse:


भोक्तारं यज्ञतपसां सर्वलोकमहेश्वरम् ।
सुहृदं सर्वभूतानां ज्ञात्वा मां शान्तिमृच्छति ॥ ५.२९ ॥
bhoktāraṁ yajña-tapasāṁ
sarva-loka-maheśvaram
suhṛdaṁ sarva-bhūtānāṁ
jñātvā māṁ śāntim ṛcchati


A person in full consciousness of Me, knowing Me to be the ultimate beneficiary of all sacrifices and austerities, the Supreme Lord of all planets and demigods, and the benefactor and well-wisher of all living entities, attains peace from the pangs of material miseries.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is 5.29 https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/5/29/

Could a “benefactor and well-wisher of all living entities” ever institute a program of eternal damnation, where one can never be redeemed for whatever wrongs one may have committed? Not a chance!

In fact, knowing the material sojourn to be intensely painful, this “benefactor and well-wisher of all living entities” travels with each and every individual soul as the supersoul, till the completion of their material sojourn – whether it be in the body of a bird, a pig, a plant, an insect, a vulture, a tiger or any creature you can think of, God takes His place by the side of the spirit soul, little jiva…


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.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is 18.61 https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/18/61/

Yes, just see the immense kindness of God, to accompany a person who has rebelled, and left the association and service of God. How many persons even do that for one lifetime? Leave alone for millions and billions of lifetimes? No, only God is capable of that kind of infinite patience and love.

But what about damnation? There is none, there are simply correctional facilities…


तानहं द्विषतः क्रुरान्संसारेषु नराधमान् ।
क्षिपाम्यजस्रमशुभानासुरीष्वेव योनिषु ॥ १६.१९ ॥
tān ahaṁ dviṣataḥ krūrān
saṁsāreṣu narādhamān
kṣipāmy ajasram aśubhān
āsurīṣv eva yoniṣu


Those who are envious and mischievous, who are the lowest among men, I perpetually cast into the ocean of material existence, into various demoniac species of life.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is 16.19 https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/16/19/

And what happens next?


आसुरीं योनिमापन्ना मूढा जन्मनि जन्मनि ।
मामप्राप्यैव कौन्तेय ततो यान्त्यधमां गतिम् ॥ १६.२० ॥
āsurīṁ yonim āpannā
mūḍhā janmani janmani
mām aprāpyaiva kaunteya
tato yānty adhamāṁ gatim


Attaining repeated birth amongst the species of demoniac life, O son of Kuntī, such persons can never approach Me. Gradually they sink down to the most abominable type of existence.

Bhagavad Gita As It Is 16.20 https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/16/20/

So how can God be advertised as the all-merciful?

This is what A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada says:


It is known that God is all-merciful, but here we find that God is never merciful to the demoniac. It is clearly stated that the demoniac people, life after life, are put into the wombs of similar demons, and, not achieving the mercy of the Supreme Lord, they go down and down, so that at last they achieve bodies like those of cats, dogs and hogs. It is clearly stated that such demons have practically no chance of receiving the mercy of God at any stage of later life. In the Vedas also it is stated that such persons gradually sink to become dogs and hogs. It may be then argued in this connection that God should not be advertised as all-merciful if He is not merciful to such demons. In answer to this question, in the Vedānta-sūtra we find that the Supreme Lord has no hatred for anyone. The placing of the asuras, the demons, in the lowest status of life is simply another feature of His mercy. Sometimes the asuras are killed by the Supreme Lord, but this killing is also good for them, for in Vedic literature we find that anyone who is killed by the Supreme Lord becomes liberated. There are instances in history of many asuras – Rāvaṇa, Kaṁsa, Hiraṇyakaśipu – to whom the Lord appeared in various incarnations just to kill them. Therefore God’s mercy is shown to the asuras if they are fortunate enough to be killed by Him.

A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, BG 16.19 Purport

But that is reserved for the really big demons, it takes a lot of effort to get there, none of the little ones make it past correction, and time in various insect, plant, animal, bird, fish lifetimes before coming back to another human life.

I’ve been told many times that because I am not following the Qu’ran according to someone’s interpretation, or because I haven’t accepted Jesus as my savior in someone’s view, I am going to hell. This couldn’t be further from the truth. I follow the principles of the Quran better than most people who claim to be Muslims, and it is a fact that Jesus Christ led me to where I am today.

God is a loving person, and I have a loving relationship with God. I will accept all the correction I deserve, seeing it coming from the loving hand of God. But this will remain my prayer…


तत्तेऽनुकम्पां सुसमीक्षमाणो भुञ्जान एवात्मकृतं विपाकम्
हृद्वाग्वपुर्भिर्विदधन्नमस्ते जीवेत यो मुक्तिपदे स दायभाक् ॥ १०.१४.८ ॥

tat te ’nukampāṁ su-samīkṣamāṇo
bhuñjāna evātma-kṛtaṁ vipākam
hṛd-vāg-vapurbhir vidadhan namas te
jīveta yo mukti-pade sa dāya-bhāk

My dear Lord, one who earnestly waits for You to bestow Your causeless mercy upon him, all the while patiently suffering the reactions of his past misdeeds and offering You respectful obeisances with his heart, words and body, is surely eligible for liberation, for it has become his rightful claim.

Srimad Bhagavatam 10.14.8 https://vedabase.io/en/library/sb/10/14/8/

So eternal damnation, it’s a myth, forget about it.

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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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Are you a man? Are you a woman? What are you?

We are not these bodies. To think we are these bodies, or to treat someone else as if they are a body is idiotic.

Recently I met a very intelligent lady on the street, who was very receptive to the spiritual message, but asked me “I am wary of religion, especially organized religion, because of the way they treat women. What is your view on women?”

I said to her that anyone who thinks they are a man or a woman is an idiot. We are all eternally spiritual beings, part-and-parcel of the Supreme. These temporary material identities are merely clothes we’re wearing, according to conditioning acquired over millions of lifetimes. A man today can be a woman tomorrow, and a woman today can be a man tomorrow, or for that matter, a dog, cat, or a worm or a tree.

To know and respect every living entity as a spirit soul, part-and-parcel of God, different only in the present quality of their covered consciousness, is the primary duty of a spiritualist. Anyone who does not do so is not really a spiritualist, but really a materialist in religious disguise.

In fact, this mistreatment of souls over hundreds and thousands of years has resulted in an exponential growth of the terrible, but fortunately curable disease known as atheism. Souls may not necessarily have anything against God to start with, but many can’t stand to be around self-absorbed holier-than-thou religious snobs.

In my journey as a recovering atheist, I am praying to be released of that kind of external material vision. I am praying to see every soul as a temple of God, where, the soul, and God in His expansion as the Supersoul or “Paramatma” reside. The tiny soul may or may not be directly feel connected to their Best Friend sitting next to them in their heart, but certainly the Supersoul, localized expansion of the Supreme Absolute Truth always sees the soul as His. Through sickness or health, through wealth or poverty, through atheism, materialistic religion, or true spirituality, the soul is always His.

If I am striving to purely love God, then I must also love the soul who is His. I am inviting spiritualists from all traditions to please recognize this “vector” of spreading either atheism or God consciousness – if you love me, love my dog. If you Love God, then Love His souls also. And no one can fake it. Every soul has an in-built lie-detector, a fakeness indicator. If a soul perceives that I do not appreciate them, then I can never be successful in reconnecting that soul to God.

विद्याविनयसंपन्ने ब्राह्मणे गवि हस्तिनि ।
शुनि चैव श्वपाके च पण्डिताः समदर्शिनः ॥ ५.१८ ॥
 
vidyā-vinaya-sampanne
brāhmaṇe gavi hastini
śuni caiva śva-pāke ca
paṇḍitāḥ sama-darśinaḥ
 

The humble sages, by virtue of true knowledge, see with equal vision a learned and gentle brāhmaṇa, a cow, an elephant, a dog and a dog-eater [outcaste]. BG 5.18 https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/5/18/

ममैवांशो जीवलोके जीवभूतः सनातनः ।
मनःषष्ठानीन्द्रियाणि प्रकृतिस्थानि कर्षति ॥ १५.७ ॥
 
mamaivāṁśo jīva-loke
jīva-bhūtaḥ sanātanaḥ
manaḥ-ṣaṣṭhānīndriyāṇi
prakṛti-sthāni karṣati
 

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. https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/15/7/

 
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/

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Nothingness does not exist

We’re supposed to believe that everything originally came from nothing. Nothing existed before, and suddenly for no reason whatsoever there was an explosion, or “singularity”, and out of this nothingness, all of everything came. In other words, we’re all just a “random” meaningless accident. BTW, randomness does not exist also, but that’s topic for another day.

As if this absurdity from the scientific community wasn’t enough, certain pseudo-spiritual traditions even attempt to focus their efforts on dissolving into nothingness.

But actually nothingness does not exist. Let’s say we had empty space with no molecules or light or radiation of any sort in it… what would we have, nothing, right? Wrong! Space still exists, and cannot be created by any material means. Space cannot be taken for granted. In space, everything material happens, physical phenomena, chemical reactions, biological interactions, electromagnetic radiation, everything happens in space, and no material scientist has ever created space or shown it being created materially. So where does space come from? No periodic table of elements even lists space as a material element! Actually the periodic table of material elements is sorely incomplete, but again, topic for another day.

Let’s examine “nothingness” as a concept. Yes, the concept of nothingness exists, it is something, but by its very existence, it negates the reality of nothingness. So even the existence of the concept of nothingness means that nothingness does not actually exist.

Nothingness has never existed, and never shall exist.

Let’s leave these absurdities like nothingness aside and focus on matters of substance, total substance, perfectly substantial, the Supreme Substantial Whole, showing nothingness as paltry, as it should be for all of us.

oṁ pūrṇam adaḥ pūrṇam idaṁ
pūrṇāt pūrṇam udacyate
pūrṇasya pūrṇam ādāya
pūrṇam evāvaśiṣyate

“The Personality of Godhead is perfect and complete, and because He is completely perfect, all emanations from Him, such as this phenomenal world, are perfectly equipped as complete wholes. Whatever is produced of the Complete Whole is also complete in itself. Because He is the Complete Whole, even though so many complete units emanate from Him, He remains the complete balance.” https://vedabase.io/en/library/iso/invocation/

…The completeness of human life can be realized only when one engages in the service of the Complete Whole. All services in this world – whether social, political, communal, international or even interplanetary – will remain incomplete until they are dovetailed with the Complete Whole. When everything is dovetailed with the Complete Whole, the attached parts and parcels also become complete in themselves.

eko ‘py asau racayituṁ jagad-aṇḍa-koṭiṁ
yac-chaktir asti jagad-aṇḍa-cayā yad-antaḥ
aṇḍāntara-stha-paramāṇu-cayāntara-stham-
govindam ādi-puruṣaṁ tam ahaṁ bhajāmi

He is an undifferentiated entity as there is no distinction between potency and the possessor thereof. In His work of creation of millions of worlds, His potency remains inseparable. All the universes exist in Him and He is present in His fullness in every one of the atoms that are scattered throughout the universe, at one and the same time. Such is the primeval Lord whom I adore. https://www.vedabase.com/en/bs/5/35

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