Serving the Completeness of God Posted in: Divine Expression, Divinity, One And Different, The Self Divine
God is complete, and God being the supreme enjoyer is an essential part of the completeness of God. In the Hindu/Vedic tradition, one name for God is Rasaraja (Sanskrit: king [raja] of tastes [rasa]).
Completeness is not one-sided or partial. God’s knowledge and experience are not one-sided either. I propose that His completeness must span knowledge/experience and enjoyment of the full range of rasa, including those facilitated by ignorance.
This material world is a place of covered self-awareness. In other words, a place of ignorance. In particular, its pleasures are only possible when one is ignorant of one’s eternal nature. Therefore a fully cognizant Godhead cannot directly enjoy the material world. Rather He does so as the living entities – versions of Him that are not full of knowledge and self-awareness. I propose that in order to enjoy from a forgetful/ignorant perspective the one supreme original personality of Godhead becomes many.
“The Lord is one without a second, and He expands Himself into many for His transcendental pleasure.”
Point of View
This essay analyses what might be going on in the material world from the oneness-of-the-living-entity-with-God point of view. My conviction is that we, the living entities, are simultaneously one and different from God. In other words we are God, but we are also not God. Sounds contradictory? … more on inconceivable one-ness and difference here.
God is enjoyer of all rasas, but there are a range of rasas that are only available in the material world and only available to God as the jiva rather than as the Supreme Original Personality of Godhead. Why as the jiva only? Unlike God (bhagavan, paramatma), god-as-jiva (tatasta sakti, jivatma) can be forgetful of his eternal blissful nature … identify with the temporary body etc. This forgetfulness is necessary for the ‘enjoyment’ of certain rasas. I am call them ‘material world only’ rasas.
There are a number of fundamental illusions specific to life in the material world. Illusions like being temporary, limited etc. By considering what these illusions facilitate in the way of enjoyment or rasa, I propose we get a clue as to what is going on here.
This emotion experience that we are going through, these feelings we are experiencing in the material world, are all part of the completeness of God. Indeed without them God’s experience would be missing something. At times when the world seems a harsh place, or we are ‘enjoying’ what are on the face of it painful emotions, maybe we can find some solace by thinking in this way?
How enjoyment is facilitated by believing in things we know not to be true is well illustrated by the suspension of disbelief that takes place in the theatre or cinema. By such suspension of disbelief we can enter into and enjoy the production. In fact we seem to have a special ability to accept as real something that we know to be false, especially when it serves our enjoyment. I suggest that this is a big clue to what is going on here in the material world, and our ability to suspend disbelief is the essential difference between us and the original, supremely congisant, Godhead.
Just as the suspension of disbelief in the theatre serves us, perhaps our buying into the illusion of the material world is likewise serves the jiva’s enjoyment … God’s enjoyment in the material world. On other words, the jivas are God suspending disbelief in the material world
The material is a believable backdrop, designed to provide a platform and give context to the myriad of material-world-only enjoyments! If you don’t believe in it; if you don’t accept it as real, you can’t enjoy it. That is true in the theatre. Does the same principle apply to the material world?
I think I believe that in this world we are all little gods serving the completeness of the big God, and as such whatever we do must already be perfect. Even the dark stuff. At the same time I am struggling with this idea!