Nobody in ignorance can be happy. This ignorance has to be removed if we actually want to be happy and peaceful

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"this ignorance has to be removed if we actually want to be happy and peaceful. Nobody in ignorance can be happy"

Lectures

Sri Caitanya-caritamrta Lectures

This ignorance has to be removed if we actually want to be happy and peaceful. Nobody in ignorance can be happy. We have got experience here. Those who are advanced in knowledge, they are comparatively happy in this world, and those who are ignorance, they are not happy.
Lecture on CC Madhya-lila 20.334-341 -- New York, December 24, 1966:

The whole trouble in the world is misunderstanding. That's all. Under the spell of this material nature, we are simply misunderstanding. But when we come to the pure state... Just like mirror, when cleansed of all the dust we can see our face nicely, similarly, when the mind is cleared of all material dust then we can see what we are. In ignorance we identify with this body and bodily relationships. And in passion we are very much active for this bodily comfort. And in goodness we can see what we are. So in goodness we can see that "I am not this body." Of course, it is very common thing to understand that "I am not this body," the distinction between a dead man and living man. When a man is dead, the relatives cry, lament, "Oh, my son is gone," "My father is gone," "My wife is gone." But if we think, "Your wife is there lying. Your son is lying there. Why do you say he is gone?" Actually he is gone, but so long he does not go, we think this body as my son, as my daughter. This is ignorance. At the end we can understand, "Oh, this body is not my son," "This body is not my daughter," "This body is not my father," when the end is done. But still, even after that experience, we think that "This body is myself." This is called ignorance. Ahany ahani lokāni gacchanti yama-mandiram. In every moment, every second, we are seeing that body is this matter; the soul, when gone from the body, it has no value. Still, I am thinking that "I shall live in this world eternally, and I shall... Let me enjoy this bodily sense gratification." This is ignorance.

So this ignorance has to be removed if we actually want to be happy and peaceful. Nobody in ignorance can be happy. We have got experience here. Those who are advanced in knowledge, they are comparatively happy in this world, and those who are ignorance, they are not happy. Of course, by the spell of this illusory energy, although he is not happy, he thinks, "I am happy." Just like in the Bowery Row, street, you will see, so many drunkards, they are lying. They are thinking happy, but others, those are passing on the street, they are seeing they are not happy. So this is going on. So this mode of ignorance and passion has to be removed. Unless we remove that, the modes of passion and ignorance, there is no chance of become peaceful and happy. Because in goodness everything is... Just like we have got experience: when the sky is cloudy, we are not very much happy, and as soon as there is sunrise, clear sky, we say, "Oh, today is very nice day." Why? Because the light is there. So when we come to goodness, the light of knowledge is there, and therefore we see, "Oh, it is very nice." But if we stay on that point, "Oh, it is very nice. It is very nice day," that is not all. But you must utilize the very nice day. Otherwise what is very nice day to you? Similarly, knowledge has to be also fully utilized. And what is the full utilization of knowledge? The full utilization of knowledge is to understand God. That is full utilization. So long one does not come to the point of Kṛṣṇa understanding, Kṛṣṇa consciousness, or God consciousness, he is more or less in the ignorance.