WHY should we develop our Heart Space? – Part-6

4.     Vikasita – Developed consciousness and 5. Purna vikasita – Fully Evolved consciousness

These two states represent the pinnacle of advanced consciousness, where an individual’s sense of identity merges with the universe, and they recognize themselves as servants of God. In this state, they perceive their oneness with divinity and find deep contentment in being instruments of God, spreading joy and hope in the lives of others. They perceive the presence of God everywhere and in everything.

An incident involving Srila Prabhupada beautifully exemplifies this perspective. Once, while strolling in a garden with a few disciples, a pleasant yet cold wind blew. One of the students offered a shawl for Srila Prabhupada to keep warm. However, he graciously declined the shawl and spontaneously expressed that the gentle breeze was Krishna’s embrace. As he sat on the soft grass, another devotee quickly arranged a cushioned seat for his spiritual master. Again, Srila Prabhupada dismissed it, remarking that he was already seated on God’s lap. This incident illustrates Srila Prabhupada’s ability to perceive God both as a person and as the essence permeating all of creation.

Ascending the Levels of Consciousness

As we ascend the ladder of consciousness, we gradually enter the realm of the Heart Space, where we begin to perceive the presence of God in our daily lives. By nurturing qualities like appreciation and gratitude, we shift our mindset from scarcity and fear to one of abundance.

Among the four fundamental propensities shared with animals, fear stands out prominently. While we can only eat until our stomach is full and sleep for a limited number of hours, or have sex a few times until the desire invades again at another time, fear and the instinct to defend persist constantly. It’s ubiquitous – fear drives us to work, travel, earn, save, and even engage in conflicts. Even when we are not experiencing overt fear from external sources, our subconscious mind harbors insecurities and anxieties that can compromise our well-being, weakening our immune system.

Hence Shrimad Bhagavatam and other Vedic scriptures implore humans to seek a life that transcends struggle and sense gratification that is basically driven by fear. It behoves us to tap this human endowment and perfect our lives. We have superior intelligence as compared to the animals, and that is evident when a man of modest stature and meagre physical strength is able to encage ferocious lions and tame wild elephants. Yet, when our intelligence is used for fulfilling only our primal needs, then we are no better than the animals.

Pleasure seeking is eventually Pain giving

To seek pleasure for the body is natural for human beings. However, it is important to recognize that seeking pleasure alone is a poor substitute for true happiness, which encompasses a much richer experience beyond the limitations of our senses.

Recently, during my morning walk, a lady wearing a strong perfume passed by me from the opposite direction. For a brief moment, the fragrance assaulted my senses but it was quickly overshadowed by the foul smell emanating from unattended garbage on the streets. A few minutes later, I arrived at a garden where the staff was watering the rose plants. The fragrance of the damp earth, combined with the sight of beautiful fruit-bearing trees, touched me on a deeper level, providing a more meaningful experience.

To be continued…