As the captain of a commercial jet, Bhakta Eric gets a unique view of the material world. In the Flying Jiva, he’ll relate the stories of his preaching experiences and the realizations of a devotee on sankirtana in the jet stream.
When flying an airplane across the country you tend to see things that others do not. For example, you can see how the earth moves beneath you relative to the stars, which are standing still. Every day we walk or drive somewhere, and some of us fly to far-reaching places in the world. Interestingly, time disappears or re-manifests itself along our journey. Time, as it seems in the material world, is relative. The theory of relativity asserts that everything is relative, or illusion. When we consider ourselves relative to the entire universe, we’re actually going in a completely different direction than we think we are. As the earth rotates underneath our toes in this rotating galaxy upon galaxies, each moving at different speeds, it would seem illogical to assume we are going anywhere at all.
The material world is a perverted reflection of the spiritual world. Transcendental knowledge makes it clear that illusion is to be expected. Maya is the Lord’s blessing, as She maintains our illusion of the material world. Scientifically, the theory of relativity proves the existence of illusion in the material universe. It is all a part of our ultimate preparation to find true happiness at the Lotus Feet of Lord Sri Krsna, the original Creator of all that is and isn’t.
From a spiritual standpoint, we have to learn to be aware. It’s easy to be aware of our immediate surroundings, but what does it really mean? Just as time changes beneath our wings when we fly over great distances, so the whole world is changing. The entire universe is creating and destroying itself, on a scale far greater then the rate at which the living entities manifest and disappear on our very small planet. Again it is all -- relative. As the scientists say, “E=mc˛”.
From the spiritual standpoint, we can understand that the E=mc˛ formula really means we have to be aware of the Lord. In essence, the Form of the Lord is spiritual energy. He surrounds us and transfers everywhere. But as we’ve learned, energy cannot be created or destroyed. Having this awareness of God is to have awareness of the nature of the material and spiritual worlds, which encompass our highly ill-relative bodies.
Science has been on a quest for some time to discover the origin of life. In fact, this quest has been in existence since the origin of man. Recently science has "discovered" a way to define God. Here’s how it works: A scientist who believes in the Big Bang theory must have a pre-bang philosophy to back up the bang, so-to-speak. While engaged in research to discover if the universe is collapsing upon itself from the force of gravity, scientists discovered remnant energy throughout the universe that has no matter or particle associated with it. In other words, it is energy without a place to call home. Even more interesting, this erroneous energy is not in far reaching places in the universe -- it’s everywhere! It’s all around us, but none of our mundane senses can see, feel or hear it. This energy can only be experienced by two receivers: our television set, and our heart. And what do the scientists call this energy? They call it Anti-matter. Yes, it is the opposite of matter. It is the original compression of all energy. Hmmm… sounds pretty God-like to me.
Here’s a fun experiment you can do at hom. Turn on your TV set with reception coming only from the antenna, and turn it to a channel that just receives static. The dots on your TV, which show the static, are actually the image and sound of energies originally manifested in the material universe. Science has demonstrated this to be the remnants of ‘anti-matter’. However, scientific knowledge is relative knowledge, which is not the same as absolute knowledge.
Perhaps what the scientists have actually discovered is the ultimate theory of relativity in the material universe. There is Jivatma energy and Paramatma energy, which are the personal forms of energy from the Lord. Real anti-matter is untransformed Brahman, or impersonal energy coming from Krsna. This energy is ordinarily transformed into material energy, prakrti. The remnants of untransformed energy are the remnants of creation. Within material energy there is gross energy such as earth, water, fire, air and ether. Then there is subtle energy, which is mind, intelligence, and ego. It is all designed to create the illusion of what is called the material universe. The real science is being able to distinguish oneself as a Jivatma, an eternal spirit soul seeking eternity, knowledge and bliss, rather than being blinded by material illusion and only seeing oneself as temporary, miserable, and ignorant. Perhaps real relativity lies in the spirit soul.