Desire and Eternal Conditioning

Question: Since we have been ”associated” with the subtle body since the beginning of time – does this mean we have always been subject to  material desire and enjoment?

Answer: YES.

Question: I know in your book  ”In Vaikunta not even the Leaves Fall” (which I am still reading) it was made clear that we are eternally conditioned, but if this is the case, then how is our condition fully our responsibility – since we have never had a moment where we were entirely independent of the material energy (due to eternal association with a subtle body)?

Answer: Responsibility comes with knowledge. Now you have the knowledge and hence the responsibility.

Question: If eternal means no beginning and no end, and if my conditioned state is eternal, then how is there opportunity or possibility of ”ending” my conditioned state of being in this life?

Answer: Eternally conditioned means conditioned without any beginning. But it can have an end.

Question: Because the mind orchestrates the thoughts, feelings and desires -based on perception which is rooted in the experience of pleasure or pain – and since the scope of the intelligence seems to be limited to what is ”stored” in the mind’s perception – the intelligence seems be more of a servant of the mind and a perpetuator of knowledge or ignorance, depending on the inherent ”state” of the jiva’s mind.  It seems to only be able to regurgitate conclusions already made by the mind (on the basis of past pleasures or pains.) Its only strength is its ability to apply these conclusions relevantly to present circumstance. But alone, intelligence seems to have no power to free the jiva of pain or illusion. So why is intelligence praised as being superior to mind? If anything, the opposite is true because intelligence is dependent on the mind, is it not?

Answer: Intelligence can discriminate between good and bad based upon past experience. The mind only experiences. If the mind experiences pain, the intelligence can raise a question – why do I suffer? Intelligence can control mind. There are two categories of mind, the unconscious and the subconscious. Intelligence is the conscious mind. Conscious is always superior to unconscious or subconscious. Although it is a fact that intelligence is dependent on the unconscious mind for data, but it has the ability to make decisions on the basis of this data. Therefore it is superior. It is also superior because with the intelligence we can comprehend our experience and store the data properly.