At least 2.1 Million Years ago, there was a very powerful personality named Ravana. He was the king of a Golden Kingdom called Lanka. He was a very learned scholar, practically unbeatable in battle, and had practically conquered the entire Universe. You can say he was the greatest atheist of his time too.
He really wanted to change things up – among other things, he wished to construct a bridge from Lanka to the Moon. He was technically capable of accomplishing this, seeing that he was undefeated in the Universe.
The Moon is a Heavenly Realm, where the residents enjoy a very long duration of life, very strong, attractive bodies, with all manners of facilities for sense gratification, all powered by a beverage called “Soma Rasa” – literally, the nectar available on the Moon.
Naturally, everyone wants to go to a beautiful place where a lot of sense gratification is available. The hordes of humans going to various places for tourism is the proof of this. Mostly, people go on vacation for a weekend, a week, maybe a month or two, and yet others manage to stay on vacation for a long time, according to how much wealth and health someone possesses.
In order to gain health and wealth, one must try very hard, and many are unsuccessful. Quite often, the healthy are not wealthy, and the wealthy are far from healthy. So, their capacity for sense gratification is limited. Most people who are on vacation don’t want the vacation to end. They want it to last as long as possible.
If someone is able to go on an unearned vacation, that is seen as a great stroke of good luck. If a politician was to promise his people unlimited free vacations, he would stay in power for ever, and the people would remain grateful to such a leader for ever!
But to go to the Moon planet requires tremendous merits, which can be obtained by performing various severe austerities and penances, quite painful, and most cannot make it. Great practitioners of the process of material elevation, called “karma kanda” strive for many, many lifetimes to enter the heavenly realm of the moon. But one cannot go to the heavenly realm in these earthly bodies, just like an astronaut puts on a space suit to go into space and a diver puts on a diving suit to go under water, similarly, the heavenly realm requires a heavenly body.
Not everyone can afford an astronaut suit or a diving suit, or the training needed to perform those activities, or the means of transport needed!
This is generally true… to become a great rich businessman, to become a rich professional like a doctor or software engineer, stock broker or real estate tycoon, one must work very hard. What to speak of those things, if one wants to get a mere University degree, one has to slog for a good 20+ years through school and University. And even then a degree is not guaranteed, after all, so many students fall by the wayside without earning a University degree.
So naturally, Ravana was a very popular king, he promised the Ultimate heavenly luxury just for the mere price of climbing a staircase!
But Ravana didn’t make it. In fact, he bit the dust at the hands of Lord Rama – God who appeared as the Ideal King. And needless to say, the staircase never materialized.
So, these days, it is all the rage to want to go and live in space, on the Moon, or maybe Mars. Fools are claiming to take anyone who wants to go anyplace in our Universe in due course of time. But they too will bite the dust, just like the mighty Ravana. And it’s not only Ravana, but unfortunately, a large number of his followers were also slain in the battle outside Lanka.
In fact, compared to the Original Ravana, these little ravanas like Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Richard Branson are not even as significant as bacteria. They are rich on imaginary wealth, somehow everyone is accepting their billions of dollars of fake money as real. Every single day, just by rising and setting, the sun is eroding their lifetimes. They are already old men, and will sooner or later succumb to inevitable death.
The intelligent person should ask the right questions…
- What about this planet? What about getting along with each other here without trying to kill each other? What about respect for all of us, all races, all species, all species? What problems are we trying to solve running away from this planet and this life here and now?
- No matter how amazing a place might be on this planet, no matter how beautiful, how relaxing, or how exciting, has it’s own share of problems. Every “tropical paradise” has it’s share of birth, death, old age, and disease, not to mention mosquitoes, crime, violence, exploitation, and corruption!
- If I live in a poor country, say a place like Burundi or Somalia, say I want to go to a rich country like the United States of America or Germany… can I go there without a passport, a visa, and a plane ticket? Can everyone in the world go to any place on the planet today? So, why can someone travel to other planets without acquiring the necessary qualifications?
- Those of us who have the experience of being on holiday, does the holiday last for ever? Is it not that once the money is finished, one has to get back home and resume work? So, even if someone was able to go to some heavenly realm, would it not be temporary? Should we not look for a permanent solution to the problems of the world?
आब्रह्मभुवनाल्लोका: पुनरावर्तिनोऽर्जुन ।
मामुपेत्य तु कौन्तेय पुनर्जन्म न विद्यते ॥ १६ ॥
punar āvartino ’rjuna
mām upetya tu kaunteya
punar janma na vidyate
From the highest planet in the material world down to the lowest, all are places of misery wherein repeated birth and death take place. But one who attains to My abode, O son of Kuntī, never takes birth again.https://vedabase.io/en/library/bg/8/16/
While the Moon is a heavenly realm, Mars is actually an inauspicious planet, why should anyone go there!
So therefore, instead of being in the Ravana camp by being a fan of NASA or Musk or the like, or placing any faith in them, we should instead go beyond their bluffs and reach a higher level of consciousness, Krishna Consciousness. Instead of going here and there, we should strive to go back home, or be right at home in our eternal spiritual identities, regardless of where we may be placed.
We are spiritual beings at our core, we all are. We’re having this material experience, and striving to get the material experience that will truly satisfy us. But no material experience can make us truly happy just as a fish out of water will never be happy.
If you want to read this book “Easy Journey to Other Planets” by A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, click here. If you would like a paper copy, or send a copy to the little Ravanas, let me know!
Questions? Would you like to reach out to me?