6-The Lord's servants come to the material world

This somewhat complicated subject will be discussed in future separate essays in greater detail. Tulasi is not an ordinary living entity. It is mentioned many times in sastra and in Srila Prabhupada's purports (pertinent quotes included within this presentation) that the descent of the Lord's nitya-parsadas is for the purpose of His lila and is not in the same category as the appearance of the nitya-baddha living entities. Nor is the descent of Tulasi an example of a resident of the spiritual world becoming envious of Krsna.

The example of Kala Krsnadasa is inappropriate since he was already in the material world. Furthermore, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu did not allow him to fall away but protected him and kept him with Him for a year. Kala Krsnadasa was then given the shelter of Nityananda Prabhu and the nectarean service of informing Mother Saci and the residents of Navadvipa of the Lords South Indian tour in great detail.

Other examples of falldown from spiritual positions show that each case is special, and those devotees who were spiritually situated were simply taking part in the Lord's transcendental lila. Citraketu did not fall into material life. It is clear from his prayers to the Lord (as Vrtrasura) that he was still very much an exalted devotee, that his bhakti was not covered, and commentators have explained that this [apparent falldown] was a special favor of the Lord for it increased his attachment to the Lord. Srila Prabhupada explains very clearly that Jaya and Vijaya's fall was a special arrangement of the Lord for His lila (Bhag. 3.16.26-27, purp.). Jiva Gosvami writes in Priti-sandarbha, 7, that when Jaya and Vijaya became demons, within they knew themselves and kept their spiritual form. Additionally, Srila Prabhupada writes,

The conclusion [of the Jaya-Vijaya "falldown"] is that no one falls from the spiritual world or Vaikuntha planet, for it is the eternal abode. (Bhag. 3.16.26, purp.)

Therefore it is to be understood that when Jaya and Vijaya descended to this material world, they came because there was something to be done for the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Otherwise it is a fact that no one falls from Vaikuntha. (Bhag. 7.1.35, purp.)

The fall of Bharata Maharaja was also special as he was protected by the Lord. Even in the body of a deer and later as an apparently incoherent Jada Bharat he remembered his past experiences and Krsna consciousness and perfected himself in the next life.

Srila Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, in this regard, writes in his commentary on Srimad-Bhagavatam 10.2.33,

Even if they fall, they become more attached to You, just as when King Citraketu, Bharata Maharaja and King Indradyumna had a so-called fall down. In their fallen forms, such as Vrtrasura [previously King Citraketu], their love multiplied hundreds of times. Therefore, the fall of a devotee causes his love to increase.

Srila Prabhupada's purport to Bhag. 10.2.33 is in complete agreement with that of Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura. Additionally he writes, "There are instances where marginal energy jiva souls have fallen from the spiritual world, just like Jaya and Vijaya." (SP Ltr. Rayarama, Dec. 2, 1968) If everyone fell, Srila Prabhupada wouldn't have written "there are instances," which suggests that this is true only in a few special cases, as we are presenting. Additionally, in reference to Jaya and Vijay, Srila Prabhupada states in other purports such as Bhag. 3.16.29 and Bhag. 7.1.35 that no one falls.

An apparent contradiction also manifests between statements of Srila Prabhupada regarding the appearance of Jaya and Vijaya in the material world. In the first set of quotes below, Srila Prabhupada warns us to be careful and follow the spiritual principles carefully or we will fall down, even from Vaikuntha, just as Jaya and Vijaya fell from the spiritual world. So, we should be careful, "don't think you have achieved the goal, you can fall down from anywhere." In the second series of purports Srila Prabhupada states that actually these pure devotees have not fallen, thus revealing the hidden truth of their exhaulted status, that they voluntarily came down to satisfy the Lord's desire to fight. Those who consider the first group of statements as representative of the entire issue, and ignore the second set of quotes, not giving a proper explanation, leave us hanging with an incomplete and inconsistent presentation.

There are instances where marginal energy jiva souls have fallen from the spiritual world, just like Jaya and Vijaya. So the potency to fall under the influence of the lower energy is always there. (68-12-02)

So there is chance of falling down even from the personal association of God. Jaya-Vijaya, they had to become demons. If we do not follow strictly our regulative principles, routine work, then the whole scheme will be failure. Then, instead of Christianity, it will be "churchianity." (730919rc.bom)

After all, the living entity falls down from the spiritual world. Just like Jaya-Vijaya. There is possibility, if you do not stick to the spiritual principle, even if you are in Vaikuntha, you will fall down, what to speak of this material world? Because in the Vaikuntha or in the spiritual world, no contaminated soul can stay there. He will fall down.

Now, when the spirit soul falls down? Just like Jaya-Vijaya. Jaya and Vijaya became asuras. They fell down from Vaikuntha. But they became asuras under the circumstances. (Bhag.-gita class, Honolulu: July 4, 1974)

To be victimized by maya is possi.... There is possibility.... Just like Jaya and Vijaya. They were gatekeepers in the Vaikuntha. They also fell down, Hiranyakasipu. So this falldown, there is possibility in any moment because we are very small. We can be captivated by maya at any moment. Therefore we shall be very, very careful. (760311mw.may)

In the following excerpts Srila Prabhupada states something very different; that Jaya and Vijaya are pure devotees who have descended to the material world by the Lords arrangement:

This incident, therefore, proves that those who have once entered a Vaikuntha planet can never fall down. The case of Jaya and Vijaya is not a falldown; it is just an accident. (Bhag. 3.16.12, purp.)

A devotee once accepted by the Lord, can never fall down. That is the conclusion of this incident. [Jaya and Vijaya] (Bhag. 3.16.29, purp.)

From authoritative sources it can be discerned that associates of Lord Visnu who descend from Vaikuntha do not actually fall. They come with the purpose of fulfilling the desire of the Lord, and their descent to this material world is comparable to that of the Lord. The Lord comes to this material world through the agency of His internal potency, and similarly, when a devotee or associate of the Lord descends to this material world, he does so through the action of the spiritual energy. Any pastime conducted by the Supreme Personality of Godhead is an arrangement by yoga-maya, not maha-maya. Therefore it is to understood that when Jaya and Vijaya descended to this material world, they came because there was something to be done for the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Otherwise it is a fact that no one falls from Vaikuntha. (Bhag. 7.1.35, purp.)

The conchshell the Lord took from Pancajana, which is called Pancajanya, is the same one He sounded at the beginning of the Bhagavad-gita. According to the acaryas, Pancajana had become a demon in a way similar to that of Jaya and Vijaya. In other words, though appearing in the form of a demon, he was actually a devotee of the Lord. (Bhag. 10.45.42-44, purp.)

Similarly, Krsna does not fight with anyone ordinary, but rather with some of His great devotees. Because Krsna wants to fight, some of His devotees come down to this material world to become His enemies and fight with Him. For example, the Lord descended to kill Hiranyakasipu and Hiranyaksa. Should we think that these were ordinary living entities?

No, they were the great devotees Jaya and Vijaya, who came to this world because Krsna wanted to fight. In the Vaikuntha world, the spiritual world, there is no possibility of fighting, because everyone there engages in Krsna's service. With whom will He fight? Therefore He sends some devotee in the garb of an enemy and comes here to this material world to fight with him. (TQK: chapter 12: Bewildering Pastimes)

The fighting spirit is there in Krsna also. So when He wants to fight, in the Vaikuntha there is no possibility of fight. Nobody will be able to fight. Nobody will agree to fight. So there is no fighting. Fighting means must be inimical propensity. Unless you think "I am your enemy," and I think "you are my enemy," the fighting is not going on. If I think, "I am fighting with my friend," it will be false fighting. Fighting must be between two strong enemies. Therefore sometimes Jaya Vijaya come. The question is that why the living entity falls down? It is not falls down. Just like Jaya Vijaya came just to satisfy his master. His master desired fighting, so some of His servant went to the material world and became great enemy like Hiranyakasipu. Ravana. For killing Ravana, Rama is coming. Well, Ravana could not be killed without Rama. (720405SB.MEL)

When Krsna wants to fight, who will fight with Him? Some of His devotee, great devotee will fight with Him. Not ordinary. Just like a king, if he wants to practice mock fighting, some very exalted fighter, wrestler will be engaged. Similarly... That is also service. Because Krsna wants to fight, therefore some of His devotees come down to become His enemy. Just like Jaya-Vijaya. This Hiranyakasipu and Hiranyaksa.

Do you think they are ordinary living entity? . . . Nrsimhadeva, God Himself has come to kill him. Do you think they're ordinary? No, they're not ordinary. They're devotees. But Krsna wanted to fight. In the Vaikuntha world there is no possibility of fighting because everywhere there, everyone there is engaged in Krsna's service. With whom He'll fight? Therefore He sends some devotee in the garb of enemy and Krsna comes here to fight with Him. (730421SB.LA)

In Vaikuntha-jagat there is no violence. But Visnu is taking the symbol of violence. Otherwise what is the meaning of this disc and club? So when He wants to be violent, He comes here as Nrsiµha-murti. (laughter) And He sends some of His devotees to play violence. That is Hiranyakasipu. Because there the devotees are so much in accord with Krsna and Visnu that there is no question of disagreement. But violence is when this disagreement, atheist. Therefore sometimes a devotee is deputed in this world to play as atheist, and Krsna comes to kill him. (690411rc.ny)

Additionally, Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura, in his discussion of anartha-nivrtti in the Madhurya Kadambini, cites the following as examples of devotees who have attained the state of prema:

With the attainment of the Lord's association, the eradication of anarthas is absolute, with no possibility of their appearance. Thus if one thinks that the following random episodes show anartha arising even after attaining the lotus feet of the Lord, one chould throw out that thought from his mind by his intelligence. In the case of Citraketu, who had already attained the lotus feet of the Lord, his accidental maha-aparadha to Siva was apparent, not real, for there was no ill effect from his mistake. Both as an associate of the Lord and assuming the form of the demon Vrtrasura, his wealth of prema was still evident. The apparent offense of Jaya and Vijaya was caused by their personal desire stimulated by prema. The two desired in this way, "O Prabhu! O Lord of Lords! O Narayana! You're eager to enjoy the pleasure of fighting, but outside of ourselves, everyone else is too weak to oppose you. Though we're strong, we're not inimical to You. Somehow or other, make us inimical to You, and relish the happiness of fighting. We can't bear to see any lack whatever in Your perfection. Diminishing Your affection for Your devotees, please fulfill the prayer of Your faithful servants."

Here, Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura makes no distinction between those who have obtained the Lord and those who are already residents of Vaikuntha. He states only that there is no chance of anarthas arising for one who is situated at the Lord's lotus feet, independent of whether or not one has "attained" this position or is situated in this position, as Jaya and Vijaya. Bhaktivinode Thakura, in a commentary on Bhag. 6.11.24, cites the prayers recited by Vrtrasura as demonstrating the mood of bhava-bhakti.

This quote from Visvanatha Cakravarti Thakura agrees with that of Srila Prabhupada above, "The question is that, why the living entity falls down? It is not falls down. Just like Jaya-Vijaya came just to satisfy his master. His master desired fighting, so some of His servant went to the material world and became great enemy." (720405SB.MEL) And when the Lord's pastime is finished they return to their position in the spiritual world.

The GBC Position book deals only with the quotes supporting falldown and is therefore incomplete. What should actually be our understanding? These lilas are there to caution us, that even if one thinks that they are a liberated soul, they must be careful to follow the process of Krsna consciousness strictly. These eternal associates of the Lord have come to fulfill the Lord's desire for particular lilas and show us these pastimes. Sometimes an acarya may point to these lilas to caution a neophyte that you can also fall down. In section eight below, Preaching and Siddhanta, we discuss this in greater detail.