Part 10: Liberation is a witch
Liberation may be the professed goal of many philosophies, yet devotees of God look upon it as a witch and run away from it. While liberation eliminates suffering, it also deprives us of the loving association with God forever.
Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj in this article continues to describe the things spiritual aspirants need to do in order to attain the Divine Love of God. He now states:
“jo mukti pishāchini mānē rē”
That aspirant shall attain Divine Love, who looks upon Liberation (Mukti) with disdain.
It is interesting to learn how devotees of God make fun of mukti. Once, Mukti personified appeared before a devotee deeply absorbed in devotion to God. The devotee asked, “Who are you?”
She replied, “O Saint, I am Mukti.”
The devotee was shocked and asked “Why have you come here?”
Mukti replied, “Since you are a true devotee of Shree Krishna, I would like to serve you. I wish that you please accept me!”
The devotee got furious and yelled, “Get out right now, I don’t want you here!”
This is the kind of ridicule that devotees heap upon Mukti. But how can this be? Mukti (liberation) is the professed goal of so many philosophies. For example, Nirvana is the final goal of Buddhist philosophy. Buddha stated the four noble truths and his aim was to end suffering. Even in the Vedic tradition, many philosophies and Scriptures stop at this point: “How to end suffering”.
kutrāpi kopi sukhi tadapi dukha shabalamiti
dukha pakshe niksha paṁte vivechakāh
Nobody is happy. So try and find out why we are suffering, and eliminate it.
The Nyaya Darshan has made its goal to end suffering. It says one has to understand these 16 entities: pramāṇa, prameya, saṁśhaya, prayojana, dṛṣṭānta, siddhānta, avayava, tarka nirṇaya, vāda, jalpa, vitaṇḍā, hetvābhāsa, chala, jāti, and nigrahasthāna. Through the knowledge of these sixteen entities, one will get liberated. The Vaisheshik Darshan also states the same thing. It is however not important to get into the details. It should suffice to understand that many spiritual philosophers have determined that the goal of life is ‘Mukti’, or Liberation.
On the other hand Rasik Saints or the Devotees of God, say, “this knowledge is incomplete”. In fact, the above knowledge is missing the whole point as liberation should definitely not be the goal. The goal should be to attain God of which liberation will be a consequence. The simple reason why everyone in this world is suffering is because of separation from God.
The material energy is a servant of God, and the service that it enjoys is slapping the souls of the world. By doing so it tells us, “Don’t come towards me, go towards God!” Hence we see all the misery in this world, there is a fight in someone’s family, someone else is fighting with the business partner, someone is having a tough time with the mortgage payments, and someone’s health problems are creating hell, and so on. These are all the creations of Maya.
Therefore, the aim is not to end suffering but to reach the destination, which is God! We must try and find out what our relationship with God is, and try and establish that relationship. We have an amazingly close relationship with God which we have forgotten. Thus the sole purpose of spirituality is to help us establish that relationship. The goal of meditation, chanting and other devotional things we do is not to engage us physically but to help us connect with God.
Shree Kripaluji Maharaj says that Mukti (Liberation) is a very tiny thing! We must strive for God, and Liberation will come automatically and so he writes:
hari dāsi haiṁ mukti saba, sabai jeev hari dāsa
mahā mudha jo swāmi taji, kara dāsi ki āsa
Mukti is the maidservant of God, and all souls are the servants of God.
A soul who leaves his Master (God) and runs after the maidservant (Mukti) is grossly foolish.
(Bhakti Shatak, Verse 87)
Remember if you strive for God, you will automatically get liberated. But if you strive for Liberation, you will lose Divine Love forever. In the pursuit of Liberation, the sadhana or spiritual practice is: “stop thinking, stop thinking, stop thinking”. Or, they meditate on the formless aspect of God: “I am God, I am God, I am God”. If such Gyanis attain perfection in their sadhana, when they leave their body, they merge into the Effulgence of God called the Brahm Jyoti. That was their goal, to merge into God or become one with Him. So the soul merges into the Brahm Jyoti, and remains there forever. Now, they become devoid of the Bliss of seeing God, the Bliss of relishing His Divine Pastimes, and the Bliss of serving Him. It’s as if your favorite delicacy is shreekand (an Indian sweet dish), would you like to become shreekand yourself? Of course not, how will you relish the sweetness of shreekand which you can otherwise relish by staying separate from it, and savoring it with your tongue.
Similarly, that person who has merged into God becomes devoid of the Bliss of God. The Bliss of God is experienced in dvaita (duality), not in advaita (non-duality). Even after God-realization, the Bhakti Saints retain their individual personalities in order to relish the Bliss of Divine Love. And for those who are rotating in this world, they may experience miseries life after life, but one day they may meet a Saint who will help them attain Divine Love. But remember those who have attained mukti, have become devoid of the Bliss of Divine Love forever!
That is why the Bhakti Saints say that this desire for Liberation is the biggest danger of all and they strongly warn us to stay away from it.