They (men and women of this present civilization) do not know that without self-realization they suffer the greatest loss in the human form of life
SB Canto 4
In this way, increasingly overwhelmed by illusion, King Purañjana, although advanced in consciousness, remained always lying down with his head on the pillow of his wife's arms. In this way he considered woman to be his ultimate life and soul. Becoming thus overwhelmed by the mode of ignorance, he could not understand the meaning of self-realization, of his self or of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
Human life is meant for self-realization. First of all one has to realize his own self, which is described in this verse as nijam. Then he has to understand or realize the Supersoul, or Paramātmā, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. However, when one becomes too much materially attached, he takes a woman to be everything. This is the basic principle of material attachment. In such a condition, one cannot realize his own self or the Supreme Personality of Godhead. In Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam (5.5.2) it is therefore said: mahat-sevāṁ dvāram āhur vimuktes tamo-dvāraṁ yoṣitāṁ saṅgi-saṅgam. If one associates with mahātmās, or devotees, his path of liberation is opened. But if one becomes too much attached to women or to persons who are also attached to women—that is, attached to women directly or indirectly—he opens the tamo-dvāram, the door to the darkest region of hellish life.
King Purañjana was a great soul, highly intellectual and possessed of advanced consciousness, but due to his being too much addicted to women, his whole consciousness was covered. In the modern age the consciousness of people is too much covered by wine, women and flesh. Consequently, people are completely unable to make any progress in self-realization. The first step of self-realization is to know oneself as spirit soul apart from the body. In the second stage of self-realization, one comes to know that every soul, every individual living entity, is part and parcel of the Supreme Soul, Paramātmā, or the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This is confirmed in Bhagavad-gītā (15.7):
- mamaivāṁśo jīva-loke
- jīva-bhūtaḥ sanātanaḥ
- prakṛti-sthāni karṣati
"The living entities in this conditioned world are My eternal, fragmental parts. Due to conditioned life, they are struggling very hard with the six senses, which include the mind."
All living entities are part and parcel of the Supreme Lord. Unfortunately, in this present civilization both men and women are allowed to be attracted to one another from the very beginning of life, and because of this they are completely unable to come to the platform of self-realization. They do not know that without self-realization they suffer the greatest loss in the human form of life. Thinking of a woman always within one's heart is tantamount to lying down with a woman on a valuable bedstead. The heart is the bedstead, and it is the most valuable bedstead. When a man thinks of women and money, he lies down and rests on the arms of his beloved woman or wife. In this way he overindulges in sex life and thus becomes unfit for self-realization.