March 2021
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Collected words from talks of Swami Tirtha


(from a lecture of Swami Tirtha, May 2013, Sofia)
When we discuss some elementary topics of spiritual life, nevertheless they are not simple. They are elementary in that sense that they are the basis, they are the fundament of a substantial spiritual vision. Don’t forget that we live in a very unusual age, this is the Kali-Yuga, so we cannot expect too much. This is an age of conflicts and hypocrisy. It is not favorable for religious practices in general. In some western pseudo-mystic traditions they expect for the Age of Aquarius to come. And what is that period? What happens at that time? This is the carnival, the festival time. And what is a carnival? Everything is hidden behind the mask. Everything that generally is not possible is possible. A king can act as a beggar, a beggar can act as a king. So, this is what most of the people expect: “Oh, the Age of Aquarius should come!” That’s another masquerade. You can never know who is who, what is what. Some people hope that this is like a more spiritual period, but we should be aware of the dangers also of this masquerade.
And just as it is described in our scriptures, as Krishna says in the Gita: „Irreligious will be considered religious and religious will be considered irreligious”[1]. Or if we want to paraphrase it: science will take the role of religion, people will believe in scientific facts, and they will consider the spiritual facts as some myth or legend. Therefore I say that in such an unusual age we have to find the fundaments of our faith. To understand and to emphasize for ourselves that the basis of anything that is possible in the world is consciousness – the background is consciousness. It is not information, it is not knowledge – it is consciousness. And especially the Supreme Consciousness. In other places it is said that this whole manifested material universe is only a dream of Vishnu. Let’s help it not to become a nightmare. 
Just recently a remark was mentioned that how can we interfere with the divine arrangement. So, how can you turn Vishnu’s dream into a nightmare or a success? Is it possible to interfere? Well, if we think on the theoretical platform we might say: ‘How can humans interfere into divine activities?’ But if we think on the devotional principles – that devotees can tell their opinion and they can influence God, they can invite Him – then I think it’s more obvious that if there is a connection between the human and the Supreme, then this is a real transaction. So, theoretically we can debate whether the human can enter and help or not and how is it. But you remember that beautiful description, when about the Govardhana-lila it is mentioned that everybody was gathered under the Govardhana Hill that Krishna lifted. Just to enjoy the protection of the Supreme from any danger. And then the elderly gopas used their sticks to help Krishna. They didn’t consider that ‘Hey, this boy lifted a hill! Maybe He doesn’t need any help to support it!” You see, it’s such a divine illusion, forgetfulness. Yet, they were ready to help the divine plan. ‘Yes, He wants to hold the hill, I am also helping!’ This is the way to help the divine plan to manifest. It’s not that you are doing, but you are part of it. You give your energy there, you give your attention there. This is the point. 
Therefore we have to understand these very basic, fundamental principles of our faith – that consciousness, Supreme Consciousness is the background of anything that we perceive, anything that we can do, even anything that we can feel. We have to come to that platform to see this Supreme Consciousness behind all the varieties of the manifested world. And how to do that properly? In order to achieve that vision we have to come, we must come to the atman platform.
(to be continued)
1.  Bhagavad Gita 18.32


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