Once at MIT almost 50 years ago, an unusual speaker, His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada gazed over an audience of curious faces, students and faculty, and stunned them all with a simple question.
“You have so many departments, but do you have one that studies the difference between a dead body and a live body?” They looked at each other and back at the speaker, who already knew the answer, “No”, they said. We do not.
Please pause a moment to grasp the significance of this question. If we do not know we are the soul and not the body, what have we predicated our modern educational system upon? And if we honestly assess what is happening in our world, can we say what we have in place is truly serving our greatest and highest good?
Now let us ask this question. What differs us from the animals? We eat, sleep, mate and defend, just as they do, admittedly with more gorgeous and complex arrangements, but the purpose is the same. If we thoughtfully reflect, we can understand. The difference lies in our ability to see ourselves separate from this body, to consider our own existence.
When an animal senses a storm coming, it will make whatever arrangements it can for survival, but it cannot think ahead and plan, that is the realm of the human mind.
Observing the world situation, who would not agree that we are in dire need of a global reset? How will we create a different future when our choices thus far have landed us in our present predicament? Daily we witness exposes of so called leaders in every field, government, corporate, medical, educational, entertainment, and so on, who have exceeded all boundaries of conscience and morality, sometimes acting in such depraved ways that we are shocked by the levels of selfishness and cruelty. Now let us ask ourselves. “What is the new foundation needed to change the course of human history?”
If we never asked, what is the purpose of this human form of life; if we cannot answer the most basic question whether we are the soul or the body and what happens at the time of death, how can we call our present society a human civilization.? Have we not allowed ourselves to degrade into a society of cats and dogs, polished animal life only? We celebrate power, sexual prowess, and possessions above the qualities of the human spirit? Animals do not have any ability to ask existential questions, to wonder at their plight, to consider a Higher Power. We do, and yet so perverse is the time we find ourselves in that those who openly declare their dependency on God are ridiculed, attacked, even driven out of their positions. Our country was founded upon the words, In God We Trust. We might as well put on our currency, In God We Deny. But, this is Not the majority, this is an atheistic minority who have taken over the world. It is time to take our world back. Every single human being right now is part of that reclamation process.
This is the beginning of a weekly editorial series, Godhead is Light, Nescience is Darkness. It is time we came together to push against these atheistic doctrines that are destroying our planet. We can do it. We must. We will offer solutions, based on the ancient wisdom literatures of India, as translated from the original Sanskrit by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. In the 1920’s when Srila Prabhupada was still a young man, his spiritual master, Srila Bhaktisiddanta Sarasvati Thakur Maharaja, noting his proficiency in English, requested he bring the message of Godhead to the western speaking countries who were, as he noted, “perishing for lack of this knowledge. “This is indeed our condition now, we are perishing. But we can revive our society once we begin to grasp the universal principles contained in these ancient texts, separate from any sectarian concerns.