Does Krishna control us through remembrance and forgetfulness just as computer controls through zeroes and ones?
From Muralidhara Prabhu: Would it be correct to say that, just as today’s computers can control many material aspects of life thru a combination of “zero” and “one”, Krishna controls and coaches the living entity thru remembrance and forgetfulness? Answer Podcast
Transcribed by: Geetanjali Nath
Question: From Murlidhar Prabhu, just as computers control many aspects of things in material life through just combination of zeros and ones, so can we say that similarly , Krishna controls the living entity like by , a combination of remembrance and forgetfulness , bases on BG 15:15. where Krishna says I am the giver of remembrance knowledge and forgetfulness, and an article in Gita daily article based on that verse.
Answer: Yes and No, This is Yes in the sense that, yes there are these twin things remembrance and forgetfulness and they shape our destiny, They largely depend on the path that we choose, and accordingly we attain a particular destination. so if a dunked forgets , a dunked who is trying to recover, forgets how his drinking has led to so many troubles, so again the drunker will go towards drinking. and if the drunker remembers then he will go away from drinking. So in that sense through remembrance and forgetfulness, our paths are chosen and our destinies are determined. Now there are many differences, first of all, a computer is itself inefficient and a computer controls incentive things , however Krishna is conscious and we are conscious so when we talk about Krishna controlling, that controlling is much more subtle and sophisticated, because there are , there is the factor of desire, so the computer is a ………thing and controlling an ……… things, but Krishna is a person who is reciprocating with another person that is us, so therefore Krishna can not be said to be controlling us. Krishna is reciprocating with our desires. So why does a drunken remembers or forget, that depends on the kind of desires that the drunker chooses to cultivate./ That means when the temptation for drinking comes at that time, the drunker has a choice, ok, will I still entertain this desire, will I dwell on this desire, ………………. upjayate, BG 2:6263, will take place and a person will get caught. So there on the things Krishna says, smṛti-bhraṁśād buddhi-nāśo, buddhi-nāśāt praṇaśyati. so there when Krishna talks about remembrance, is he saying I give forgetfulness ? No He is just giving a progression which causes forgetfulness. So why does that forgetfulness happen ? because we remember based on our desires, and we forget things that we desire we will not forget them. If a person is a cricket fan , that person will not forget the name of cricketers. because the desire is strong so the remembrance follows, so that means there is , now also know that when we revise things repeatedly, but when we read something once , we are quite likely to forget it. So our remembrance and forgetfulness, we can say that, there is a mechanical processes to it also. What ever we concentrate on, that's all what we remember. and if we concentrate on one thing, often we forget other things. SAo here when one concentrates on material enjoyment, then, the scriptural teachings about the dangers of material enjoyment are forgotten. Smiriti bhramsad, smirit can refer to our memory and it can also refer to smirit shastyra which we can keep in our memory, the scripture which can be recollected and we are means to recollect. So here there is reciprocation, that means, there is in one sense, a we could say a a mechanical progression, not mechanical int he sense of , that there is no consciousness involved in it, but mechanical int he sense that it is here when Krishna talks about it in 2:62,63, he does not talk about any intervention from His side, so he is just talking about what all things are happening in the subtle body. He is not bringing the soul directly here, He is just talking about how something enters in our consciousness and gradually grows grows and takes over the consciousness and drags it along. So this is mechanical may not be the best word, what I am saying is that this is the just the processes that how a subtle body functions. So what ever we concentration , on that what gets our attention and the rest things goes away from our attention. So we always have the choice what we concentration. on. so that's why we can't say Krishna controls us by remembrance and forgetfulness, actually it is we who choose , choose our desires and then Krishna reciprocates by giving us remembrance and forgetfulness. Now hoe does Krishna reciprocates, if the function is happening in the subtly body, actually speaking Krishna he sees our specific desires at a particular time and he also sees the way we are living, so sometimes a desire may overwhelmed us, the desire to do something wrong. but suddenly some phone call comes, or some times we remember something, and immediately we are saved from going down the downwards path, so that also happens because Krishna's mercy at one level. So now, Krishna gives us remembrance and forgetfulness at one sense through he system that he has set up in the subtle mind,, as how our consciousness gets directed. just as Krishna says mayādhyakṣeṇa prakṛtiḥ, sūyate sa-carācaramdakshena prakrakti………. whole material nature is working under His jurisdiction, that means that event he way the subtle body works is also part of material nature, and iis also under His jurisdiction. but in this case he simple BG 9:10, in BG (:9 Krishna says na ca māṁ tāni karmāṇi, nibadhnanti dhanañ-jaya, udāsīna-vad āsīnam, .asaktaṁ teṣu karmasu. udasina _ I am nutral , Krishna is nutral and reciprocal and beyond that Krishna also recerprocates for his devotees specially. As he says in Bg 9:29 that samo ’haṁ sarva-bhūteṣu, na me dveṣyo ’sti na priyaḥ, ye bhajanti tu māṁ bhaktyā, mayi te teṣu cāpy aham. So that means Krishna , for his devotees he gives special remembrance that's why the Bhagavatam also says that Mukundarni….. in the first canto , when Vyasadeva is instructed by Naradmuni, Naradmuni says that the devotee don't undergo material existence, in the same ways the materialistic people go because they keep remembering ……….. that have relished the rasa once and they keep relishing it again and again, and that's why they do not scumb to material existence again, although they may engage in material activities but the rasa they will keep remembering. it is like the ghost of the rassa is haunting them, it will just not go away and it will drag them back to Krishna, and that is also one one level of special level of remembrance Krishna is giving. So over all we can't say Krishna is controlling, we can say Krishna is reciprocating according to our desires, and further , one and zero is very discrete, actually with remembrance and forgetfulness there can be degrees of remembrance and forgetfulness also. for example , when we are tempted to do something wrong, at that time there is a voice within, that speaks that says don't do this , this is wrong. so now that voice is speaking, but at the same time, there is also the " Oh last time |i did it it was so enjoyable", so that is also there. so how do we do this. so that means there is remembrance and there is forgetfulness, now we can that at from moment to moment level, there might be remembrance and forgetfulness but over all there can be degrees of remembrance and there can be degrees of forgetfulness also and these degrees can be changes by how the desires that we choose. So that's why it's a subtle and a complex process and at a broad level we can say that two factors, determine lot of things , two factors contribute to determine a lot of things. just as one and zero contribute to a lot of control, but the remembrance and forgetfulness , its not just control it if reciprocation that to of consciousness beings, and there are also degrees of remembrance and forgetfulness. so broadly Krishna is a person who is guiding us as person according to our desires, He gives us remembrance and forgetfulness. So there is a process within the material nature how we remember and forget , that is in general governed by Krishna, just as Krishna says … in 15:15, before that he says that ………… , that it is I who give light through the sun, similarly Krishna has created a subtle body, which acts according to a particular way, by which remembrance and forgetfulness comes , but for his devotees He personally intervenes and gives the remembrance and forgetfulness. He gives remembrance the taste of bhakti, and He gradually gives forgetfulness of sense gratification.Thank you.