As long as the fallen soul pursues the goal of dominating the powers of nature he continues on the track of self-destruction. He is mercifully and sternly prevented from realising his disloyal suicidal ambition fully. Material civilization is built up by the illusory power of Godhead to keep up this false existence of the jiva soul who has rejected his natural life. The illusory power, however, really plays in the hands of the spiritual power of Godhead. She tries to drive the jiva to seek the shelter of the spiritual power by his experience of the miseries and disillusionments of a false existence. The fallen soul's proper function in this world begins the moment he realises his true state of affairs. He then agrees to cooperate with the illusory power for the remedy of his mortal disease of disinclination to serve the Absolute Truth. He, however, takes a long time and a long course of sufferings for radical cure. So long as the least trace of the poison of disloyal inclination is left in the soul the illusory power prevents his entry into the realm of Godhead. It is, indeed, impossible for the fallen soul unassisted to undergo the trials of the purgatorial process. Godhead sends His best beloved Associated Counterpart into the world to help the fallen soul to go through this ordeal successfully. Obedience to Godhead's Associated Counterpart is the only means of liberation from the clutches of maya. Spiritual scriptures have also been manifested in this world by Godhead for the same purpose. They enable the fallen soul to find out and have faith in the spiritual guide and believe him to be the person sent by Godhead Himself to rescue him from the clutches of the illusory power.
It is, therefore, not necessary for the jiva really to go contrary to the current of the world if he wants to do his duty to Godhead. All he has to do is realise his own fallen condition and to have a real desire to be restored to a state of grace. He then searches for the good preceptor to explain the method that he is to follow to obtain deliverance. The good preceptor tells him to believe in the eternal method represented by the Scriptures and by his own example and precept. This enables him to understand and practice the life recommended by the scriptures or shastras. This life is then found to accord with the real purpose of Nature herself although it may not at once appear to be so to those misguided people who continue to trust themselves and their futile speculations for the attainment of the goal of domination over her which is the product of their diseased imaginations.
When an individual or community attains to the spiritual outlook, such an occurrence need not necessarily be accompanied by an appearance of material prosperity. All the circumstances of this world come to such persons as opportunities of service provided by Godhead Himself. They include the varying conditions of their minds and bodies among such circumstances. They are thus enabled by the Grace of God so abundantly provided, to rise above the cares and anxieties that afflict those who are ignorant of the substance of themselves and of their relationship to the things of this world. Those, who are spiritually enlightened, covert nothing of this world for their own selfish enjoyment. They employ their bodies and minds and all the circumstances of this world in the incessant and exclusive service of Godhead. They are neither workers nor idlers in the worldly sense as they have no hankering for worldly enjoyment in any form. They do everything by reason of their connection with Godhead and in order to serve Him. Such activities, although they do not belong to this worldly plane, benefit the workers themselves and humanity at large in the only real sense. But the activities of a Vaisnava (devotee of Krishna) are not comprehensible to the materialised mind.
We need not suppose, therefore, that the prospects of material civilization will either gain or loose in the worldly sense by such spiritual activities. The course of this world is determined by the laws of physical nature. Spiritual activities raise us above passive subordination to the irresistible forces of nature as they belong to a different and higher plane. Their value or location cannot be expressed in terms of the changing circumstances of this visible world. They obey a higher law which dominates the laws of physical nature. The Vaisnavas who consciously obey the laws of the Spiritual Realm also dominate physical nature but not in the so-called visible material or illusory sense but in the real or spiritual sense. Those who follow the Vaisnavas are freed from the crushing slavery of this false existence by attaining to the spiritual service of Godhead and find themselves employed in accordance with the eternal needs of their soul without being thwarted by the current of this world. From the moment they are conscious of this they begin to function on the transcendental plane. The wheels of physical nature ceaselessly and relentlessly grind all those who pursue the objects of this world for the gratificatione us the lords of nature.
The mastery over nature which is gained by the servants of Godhead is different in kind from that which is vainly attempted by empiric science and which is never actually realisable. Mastery over nature is attainable only for the purpose of serving Godhead and not for selfish enjoyment. The material is the external enveloping face of the spiritual. It is the inner, spiritual reality that lays itself bare to the vision of the devotee of Godhead who is willing to serve Godhead and Him alone therewith. To those who are lacking in spiritual vision, the activities of Godhead refuse to manifest their real nature. On the contrary worldly minded people, due to the limited range of their perverted worldly vision, are disappointed on finding that spiritual activities are not necessarily followed by material improvements in the sense desired by themselves.
The real object of human life is not to accumulate worldly treasures to be left behind at the termination of a limited existence. The object of all life is to serve Godhead. That civilization is alone real which helps its votaries to attain this one needed thing. The external form of the real theistic civilization may displease those who prefer the shadow to substance, the illusory and transitory to the true and eternal, death to life. But the wants of our souls can never be really satisfied by anything short of the Absolute Truth. We happen to be so by our eternal constitution. We are under a delusion when we look to any other quarter for relief. Anyone who may be inclined to give a sincere and unprejudiced hearing to the voice of the Absolute Truth is bound to be convinced of the reality of its contentions, viz, that man can be liberated from the delusions of his false existence only by attaining to the exclusive service of Krishna, the Absolute Person, that such service can be learnt only by the method of convinced, rational submission at the feet of the servants and of the servants' servants of the Supreme Lord, -- that is the message of Vaisnavism taught and practised in this age by Sri Caitanyadeva for the deliverance of all fallen souls and that there is no other way of attaining the life eternal except by the method of Sankirtana of the Holy Name recommended by the scriptures and made available to all fallen souls by the mercy of Sri Caitanya and His devotees.
Sri Caitanya teaches by precept and example the full truth regarding the nature and functions of the individual soul and nothing that falls short of the full truth can fully satisfy the wants of the little soul. It is possible to serve Krishna under all circumstances. That individual or society is really blessed which uses such opportunities as are provided by Krishna for serving Him therewith. There cannot be any discord or want of harmony in this world if we make up our minds to really serve Krishna and betake ourselves sincerely to the feet of the good preceptor for obtaining the real knowledge of such service. It is not possible for us to understand the nature of the spiritual service of Godhead by means of our mental speculations which are by their nature confined to a limited view of the objects of three dimensions only. This fact may be pleasing to our vanity which is the cause of our present degradation and misery.