(Kadamba Kanana Swami, 25 December 2013, Mayapur, India, Srimad Bhagavatam 5.9.3)
Faith is based on desire. The living being is by nature is pleasure seeking, ānandamayo ’vasāne, according to the Vedanta Sutra. So, wherever we think that happiness is found that is where we will direct our faith. If we think it is in money then all our efforts will go towards money. If we think it is sex then all our effort will go towards that. If we think it is children then all our efforts will go towards the children. And if we think that happiness is really found in so many things – this one, that one and really everything; then we will be very restless!
It is like when Canakya Pandita speaks about a girl who is talking to one man, looking at another one and thinking of the third one; he could also speak about a boy in that way. So we are like that, whatever object of sense gratification we have, we hold onto that and meanwhile we are thinking, “Where is the next?” Everywhere, we are looking for more and more, still more and nothing satisfies us completely. It satisfies us at least partially so we keep everything we have and just get more! In this way, we think our happiness is increasing, “We are doing a lot better now than twenty years ago. We made a lot of progress.”
In this way, the illusory energy seems to indicate that we are making progress but it is false progress. Something like this situation – I saw pictures of Iskcon development. In the 1975 picture of the temple and all the devotees, some were on the roof, some were on the balcony in front of all the windows and the brahmacaris were next to the sankirtan van. In 1978, a newer picture – bigger house, more devotees everywhere. But what it does not show is the dent in the bank. It does not show that the new temple was purchased with a big loan. It does not show that all those devotees in the picture now have to work very hard to pay-off that loan.
So, in the same way, it may show that we have made so much progress in spiritual life. Look at what we have now – nice garlands, chadars, dhotis, hats in the right colour and matching socks. It looks good on Facebook but what about our spiritual bank account? That is the question and that is what we are facing in Jada Bharata as one who had a lot of substance in his spiritual bank balance and therefore, he had incredible strength!