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How To Be Free From All Ignorance

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Wake up! Rise and shine! That's what they say when the sun rises in the morning and the darkness of sleep is removed. The chanting of the holy name of God dissipates all miseries because miseries arise from ignorance. When we are ignorant, we make mistakes. Mistakes lead to suffering. If you are ignorant that fire burns, you may touch the fire and burn yourself. As soon as there is knowledge that fire is dangerous you will avoid the fire and save yourself from that suffering. Similarly, in one is in full knowledge of everything, he can be free from all kinds of suffering.

Our principle ignorance is that we do not know who we actually are. Some are thinking that we do not know who we are because we have lost our childish innocence or our passion due to bad association, but factually we do not know who we are because we identify with the body and the mind, which are always changing. The body and mind we had as small children are now gone and we have different bodies and think differently. But we are not gone. Therefore we do not really know who we are. It is not that we are the body and the mind and that we have some purpose or ability or goal to achieve in terms of that body, and our loss of self is due to forgetfulness of those so-called goals. No. We cannot be ”authentic” to our “selves” because we do know what the self even is.

The actual self is the soul beyond the material coverings; man or woman, black or white, leftist or right-winger, small or tall. All the different designation give us a sense of purpose relative to the title of the body. If I am a man I have to work and be successful and be a father, if I am black I must fight for black rights and overcome discrimination, If I am a child I have to play and go to school, etc. But the underlying purpose of every conscious being is service. Our service is now spread in all these material directions towards the body, family, friends, society and so on, and so our consciousness is absorbed in these things. But the original eternal consciousness of everyone is service to the source of all consciousness, the supreme soul, Lord Sri Krishna.

Forgetfulness of this is real forgetfulness of the self. And due to this forgetfulness we identify with our temporary body, mind and service in this temporary material world. Thus we suffer the pains of the body, the mind and the world around us including all the other living entities who may do the body and mind harm.

The Maha-Mantra, being the name of the absolute truth, Krishna, is not any different from Krishna, because He is absolute. He is everything, and therefore He is also His name. When one chants the holy name of Krishna, He is directly meditating on Krishna. Since Krishna is the absolute truth, meditation on Him dissipates all darkness like the sun dissipates the darkness of night.

So by chanting the holy name of God one can become free from all sufferings due to ignorance.

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