By Karnamrita Das
Studying the meaning of words (semantics) whether in Sanskrit, English, or our native language and their deeper implications in our lives is a useful endeavor in our introspection and personal growth, which I see as part of the work of “anartha-nivritti,” or retiring our unwanted, spiritually unhelpful mental and physical habits. Become free from these anarthas is an interim goal, not the end, but it is meant to lead to “artha pravritti,” or the ultimate goal of loving service to Radha and Krishna—but this is a side point to today’s discussion. Back in the late 60’s and early 70’s in the USA the hippies used the moto, peace and love, to express emotionally one of their ideals. While we may laugh at this simple expression, upon a closer and deeper exploration of the word meaning through our Gaudiya Vaishnava lens, we can find a useful application to our spiritual lives—after all the material world is considered an imperfect, distorted reflection of the spiritual world. There are also many universal truths in the world which can be perfected only by connecting them to a Godly world view in our eternal lives in perfection.