(Kadamba Kanana Swami, Stockholm, June 2011)
Sometimes it is said that in the initial stages of faith of when there is the initial phase – that we are travelling but the journey goes uphill. But we are appreciating the association of the devotees and we are with the devotees, but the path is still going uphill. We are still struggling so much with our senses and our mind, and then we may get some knowledge in the association of the devotees. But it says:
‘balavan indiya-gramo vidvamsam api karsati’, (S.B 9.19.17).
Even if we have knowledge, then we will still struggle, since that’s how strong the senses are. So the struggle continues and then we look for the purification, ‘atmendriya-priti’ the removal of the stumbling blocks in the heart. By fixing ourselves in the regulated process of devotional service:
‘vihārasya yukta-ceṣṭasya karmasu’ ( B.G 6.17).
A regulated process of devotional service will be purified and still uphill! It’s still uphill and the process of ‘anartha-nivrttih’, the stumbling blocks from the heart will be removed, and it’s since it’s still a uphill struggle…..struggle, until we get to the peak of the hill, and on the peak of the hill is the stage of ‘nistha’.
The stage of ‘nistha’ is the stage where material desires have diminished somewhat and spiritual attraction has become strong. In ‘nistha’ one has strong faith – firm faith, and not the weak faith, that one initially has. In ‘nistha’ one has strong conviction. In that stage one says:
“I’m going to put all my energy and all my endeavours simply in following whatever Krishna desires. Whatever way Krishna has given towards happiness, that’s my way, and no other way”.
And all other ideas and all other desires in ‘nistha’ one can let them go! Before it was difficult to let them go and it was a struggle, since these desires come and harass us on the path and make it a struggle, but in ‘nistha’ we can let them go! It maybe that some material desires are lurking on the horizon, but they are not so strong anymore!
After ‘nistha’ the path becomes easy. It is now gently sloping down and it’s not such a struggle anymore, because it is then that spiritual life really begins, with experiencing great taste, happiness and absorption becomes the whole essence of spiritual life!