Why does Krishna allow material adversities in the lives of his devotees? ()
When Maharaja Yudhisthira asked this question to Lord Krishna, the gist of the Lord’s reply in the Shrimad Bhagavatam (10.88.8) is that material adversities are often the essential, unavoidable means to make his devotees aware of their spiritual prosperity. The eternal, unchangeable reality is that our relationship with Krishna – and our remembrance of Krishna therein – is the basis and essence of our real happiness and actual prosperity. However, we often get distracted from this source of ultimate prosperity to worldly relationships, engagements and infatuations that we mistakenly imagine will bring us prosperity. That’s why Krishna sometimes allows adversities to take away our pseudo-prosperities so that we are left with no alternative except to turn to him for shelter – and thereby realize how his remembrance alone heralds and constitutes our true prosperity. Of course, it is not Krishna, but our own past karma, that causes those adversities. But Krishna orchestrates those adversities so that they also become opportunities for us to realize our actual prosperity. That is why when material adversities strike us, rather than resenting them in godless ignorance, let us pray for god-gifted wisdom to see in them the opportunities to realize our hitherto undiscovered or untapped spiritual riches.