18.58 – Hunted, haunted – transcended
When we practice devotional service, we sometimes face problems that seem to hunt us externally and passions that seem to haunt us internally.
Hunted: We may face problems due to misunderstandings and competitions with the people around us (adhibhautika klesha). We may also have to endure environmental misery (adhidaivika klesha) mildly as unpleasant weather and fiercely as natural disasters.
Haunted: The passions of the mind like lust, anger and greed may possess us and push us towards self-defeating acts. Such haunting comprises a major part of adhyatmika klesha, miseries coming from our body and mind.
When we thus feel hunted and haunted, we may start doubting: “I am trying to serve Krishna. Why is he not helping me?”
Gita wisdom enables us to understand how he is helping us to transcend all misery.
Transcended: Being beloved children of Krishna, we are meant to delight eternally in a transcendental life of love that lies beyond the body and the mind. Krishna aids us in tasting transcendence by providing facilities and impetuses. He provides facilities in the form of spiritual manifestations like the holy names, Deities and scriptures. Unfortunately, we don’t avail of these facilities due to our material preoccupations. So, he provides us impetuses in the form of the threefold material miseries. Of course, Krishna doesn’t cause those miseries; our own past bad karma does. But those miseries impel us to seek his shelter. When we thus become conscious of him, he empowers us to transcend misery, as the Bhagavad-gita (18.58) declares. By experiencing solace and strength in remembering him, we become convinced that transcendence is for real. This realization enables us to respond to the miseries with serenity and clarity. More importantly, it also inspires us to accelerate our journey back to Krishna’s abode, where we transcend all miseries forever.