Austerity for spiritual advancement is not as dangerous as struggle for material improvement
This material world is miserable, regardless of one’s standard of life. Of this there is no doubt. Attempts to mitigate the miseries of material existence by material methods will never be successful. One must take to Krishna consciousness to become really happy; otherwise happiness is impossible. One might say that becoming advanced in spiritual life also involves tapasya, voluntary acceptance of some inconvenience. However, such inconvenience is not as dangerous as material attempts to mitigate all miseries.
Srimad Bhagavatam 7.9.18 purport
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