During the rainy season, in the evening, there are many glowworms visible about the tops of trees, hither and thither, and they glitter just like lights. But the luminaries of the sky—the stars and the moon—are not visible. Similarly, in the Age of Kali, persons who are atheists or miscreants become very prominently visible, whereas persons who are actually following the Vedic principles for spiritual emancipation are practically obscured. This age, Kali-yuga, is compared to the cloudy season of the living entities. In this age, real knowledge is covered by the influence of the material advancement of civilization. The cheap mental speculators, atheists and manufacturers of so-called religious principles become prominent like the glowworms, whereas persons strictly following the Vedic principles or scriptural injunctions become covered by the clouds of this age. People should learn to take advantage of the actual luminaries of the sky—the sun, moon and stars—instead of the glowworms’ light. Actually, the glowworms cannot give any light in the darkness of night. As clouds sometimes clear, even in the rainy season, and sometimes the moon, stars and sun become visible, so even in this Kali-yuga there are sometimes advantages. For example, sometimes Lord Caitanya’s Vedic movement of distributing the chanting of the Hare Kṛṣṇa mantra is heard. People seriously eager to find real light should take advantage of this movement instead of looking toward the light of mental speculators and atheists.
After the first rainfall, when there is a thundering sound in the clouds, all the frogs begin to croak, like students suddenly engaged in reading their studies. Students are generally supposed to rise early in the morning. They do not usually arise of their own accord, however, but only when there is a bell sounded in the temple or other spiritual institution. By the order of the spiritual master they immediately rise, and after finishing their morning duties they sit down to study the Vedas or chant Vedic mantras. Everyone is sleeping in the darkness of Kali-yuga, but when there is a great ācārya, by his calling only, everyone takes to the study of the Vedas to acquire actual knowledge.
During the rainy season, many small ponds, lakes and rivulets become filled with water; otherwise, the rest of the year they remain dry. Similarly, materialistic persons are dry, but sometimes, when they are in a so-called opulent position, with a home or children or a little bank balance, they appear to be flourishing, but immediately afterwards they become dry again, like the small rivulets and ponds. The poet Vidyāpati said that in the society of friends, family, children, wife, etc., there is certainly some pleasure, but that pleasure is compared to a drop of water in the desert. Everyone is hankering after happiness, just as in the desert everyone is hankering after water. If in the desert there is a drop of water, it may of course be said that water is there, but the benefit from that drop of water is very insignificant. In our materialistic way of life, which is just like a desert, we are hankering after an ocean of happiness, but in the form of society, friends and mundane love we are getting no more than a drop of water. Our satisfaction is never achieved, as the small rivulets, lakes and ponds are never filled with water in the dry season.
Due to rainfall, the grass, trees and other vegetation look very green. Sometimes the grass is covered by a certain kind of red insect, and when the green and red combine with the umbrellalike mushrooms, the entire scene changes, just like a person who has suddenly become rich. The farmer then becomes very happy to see his field full of grain, but the capitalists—who are always unaware of the activities of a supernatural power—become unhappy because they are afraid of a competitive price due to abundant production. In some places certain capitalists in government restrict the farmers’ production of grain, not knowing the actual fact that all food grains are supplied by the Supreme Personality of Godhead. According to the Vedic injunction, eko bahūnāṁ yo vidadhāti kāmān: the Supreme Personality of Godhead maintains this creation; therefore, He arranges for a supply of whatever is required for all living entities. When there is a population increase, it is the business of the Supreme Lord to feed the people. But atheists or miscreants do not like abundant production of food grains, especially if their business might be hampered.
During the rainy season, all living entities in the land, sky and water become very much refreshed, exactly like one who engages in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. We have practical experience of this with our students in the International Society for Krishna Consciousness. Before becoming students, they were dirty-looking, although they had naturally beautiful personal features; due to having no information of Kṛṣṇa consciousness they appeared very dirty and wretched. Since they have taken to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, their health has improved, and by their following the rules and regulations, their bodily luster has increased. When they are dressed with saffron-colored cloth, with tilaka on their foreheads and beads in their hands and on their necks, they look exactly as if they have come directly from Vaikuṇṭha.