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(C) 1995 by Richard S. Brown All rights reserved.

Jiva Whattva?

By Richard Shaw Brown

Late Acharya of the original Sri Gaudiya Mission, Pujya Tridandi Swami Bhakti Hridaya Vana Maharaj (1901-1982), taught that the reason or purpose of this exercise, whereby unlimited Jiva-souls pass through Maya, is acintya and known only to Sri Krishna Himself. It is useless to ponder. We must understand how the process works, but we can never know the reason 'why.'

Why NOT!?

All Jivas are eternal, sometimes inactive (like during Pralaya and Maha-pralaya) and sometimes active, but always alive (chit). It is reasonable to say that no Jiva soul who had full developed intelligence of his "self" would willingly choose the painful and doomed path of Maya.

Srila Vana Maharaj clearly taught that Jivas are injected (so to speak) into Maya to work their way up and to Vaikuntha. The choice comes when we reach human intelligence, as is the case right now. Even now we could all choose to return to Vaikuntha immediately if we really desired that 100%.

The badha Jivas are meant to enter Maya and then work their way back to Para-vyoma Brahma Puri or the City of the Absolute. It is just one particular process designed by HARI for His Own fun 'n' games.

In CC Kaviraj Goswami states, "Krishna bhuli shay Jiva anadi," we have forgotten Krishna since "before time" began, so there is no initial choice. We cannot choose something, which is out of our memory.

The Jiva begins his seemingly eternal material existence as a microscopic life form, like an "anu," which is completely covered and in state of ignorance. We do not have a rational understandable choice until we reach human life; and amongst humans very few rarely question reality.

They do not choose in the beginning' because there is neither beginning nor end for the Jiva. All Jivas are eternal, conscious and blissful in essence (sat-chit-ananda), being marginal chit particles of Lord Hari.

Swami Vana Maharaj emphasized THREE particular tattvas' as being principle (in relation to us, the Jivas):

(1) The eternal, all blissful, spiritual universe which is the playground of the Lord and lies within Paravyoma brahma-puri.

(2) The temporary changeable, material universe, the endless ocean of birth and death, prakriti, the jada-samsara.

(3) All living beings seen or unseen who belong to the Jiva (soul) potency which is all spiritual and blissful by nature andemanates from in between the external and internal worlds.

Although the Jiva Shakti lies in-between the spiritual and material realms still the souls are always engaged in one or the other and do not reside in the middle but only emanate' from that position by the arrangement of Lord Vasudeva. Sarva karana karanam.

The example of King Puranjana in Srimad Bhagavat pertains to a soul already long within the jada-samsar.
Therefore it is not relevant to the issue of origin or original choice of the jiva.