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The Joy of the Self is the only True Joy

All the joys and pleasures which you enjoy in this world are only temporary, and are just the reflections of the immeasurable joy which is inside of you. Out of ignorance you believe that your joy comes from sense-objects and that this momentary joy is true. But only what is permanent is true. These temporary joys which are associated with the things of the world are not the true joy. Only the eternal bliss that is the atma, is true; these others come and go. All the things that you see in the waking state disappear in the dream state. All the joys and sorrows which you experience during the dream state you leave behind when you come back into the waking state. People and objects that you see in the waking state will appear as changing reflections in the dream state, and then they get completely absorbed and disappear in the deep-sleep state. In this way, your joy changes as these states change.

All the worldly joys which you think to be so permanent will give you a great deal of trouble in the end and lead you to grief. "Therefore," Krishna told Arjuna, "pay attention only to your inner truth, the basis, from which springs all manifestations. Then outer appearances and sense-impressions will not bother you." The basis does not change, whereas the manifestations which depend on that basis continuously change. If the basis were changing along with the manifestations, it would be impossible for you to even live. Consider this small example.

At various times you may have used different types of vehicles, such as cars, trains or buses, to travel from one place to another. The car might be moving fairly fast, so might the bus, and even if you are just walking you might be going quite fast. In each case, this movement will be in relation to the road which remains steady and unchanging. Suppose along with the moving car or the moving bus, the road itself is also moving rapidly, as in violent earthquake. Then what would happen? You would certainly be moving, but you could end up in any direction. You are not likely to reach your goal despite great efforts and hardships along the way. In order to reach your goal the road must be steady.

It is because the atmic source, the indweller of every heart, is permanent and steady that people are able to enjoy the things of the world, which are impermanent and changing. But, Krishna warned Arjuna, "Do not be satisfied with these furtive pleasures, which you mistakenly believe come from the world. The world is fleeting. It is fickle and full of sorrow. It is the ever-changing outer manifestation. It is not the permanent basis. It cannot lead you to your truth. How can you count on the world for your support when it is undergoing so many changes and modifications? Would it be possible for you to derive permanent bliss from it? Let go of the world and turn towards the transcendental principle. Turn towards the atma. It is forever steady and unchanging. There you will find the unending joy that you have been seeking futilely outside in the world."