Srila Bhaktivinoda explains that the jivas in the tatastha region are weak, because they have not yet acquired the power of the cit potency. If they engage in devotional service, they can also become strong by the cit-sakti, then they will become liberated eternally. Moreover, he said that nitya-muktas, have no contact with maya, indeed they do not even know of maya. They cannot be attracted to something which they are not even aware of. One has to know an object, properly or improperly, before desiring it, or becoming attracted to it. This cuts the fall from the nitya-lila theory to pieces.
After this Bhaktivinoda Thakura answers the question–why Lord Krishna made some jivas weak, so that they come under the influence of maya? This question would not arise if the fall down theory was in his mind, because he already said that nitya-muktas are strong, because of cit potency:
“Lord Krishna is the embodiment of mercy. Why did He make the jiva weak and thereby cause his bondage by maya? (Note: Jiva here refers only to the conditioned souls).”
“It is right that Krishna is merciful, but He is also lilamaya, or one who performs only lila. Considering that various types of lilas will be performed under various situations, the Lord made the jiva capable of rising from the marginal state, to the boundless elevated posts, such as mahabhava–the topmost. And for the facility and strength for attaining the Supreme bliss, He created many mayika low levels, in the form of various obstacles, beginning from lowest inert matter, up to false ego. The living entities bound by maya, are in ignorance of their svarupa, engaged in acquiring pleasure for themselves, and not devoted to Krishna. In this state, as much as the jiva goes down, that much more the merciful Lord, becoming manifest before him along with His associates and abode, gives him the facility to attain the ultimate destination. Those jivas who accept that facility try to achieve this high destination. Gradually they reach the transcendental abode of the Lord, and attain the same status exactly like His eternal associates.”
A class of “weak” jivas exist to enable the Lord, who is lilamaya, to have the full range of lila. Without this facility He could not be said to enjoy all varieties of lila. At the same time, the weak jiva has the inherent capacity to reach the apex of development, by taking to devotional service. This the Lord, as another aspect of His variegated lila, incarnates within the material energy to teach. As the culmination of that form of lila, the Lord comes as Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, and teaches the fallen jivas the highest destination possible, mahabhava in the mood of the gopis. Bhaktivinoda Thakura continues:
“Why does the Lord give trouble to the jivas for the sake of his lila?”
“The quality of free will in the jiva, is a special mercy of the Lord on them, because an inert object, without free will is very insignificant.
Because of this independence, the jiva gains lordship over the inert material world. Misery and happiness are states of mind.
What we consider misery, a person attached to it considers happiness. The end result of all types of material happiness, is misery and nothing else.
A man attached to sense gratification, ultimately attains misery. When this misery increases, then it gives rise to the desire for happiness.
This desire leads to discrimination, which brings inquisitiveness. Because of inquisitiveness, one attains the association of saints, which gives rise to faith. By faith one rides on the path of welfare.
Just as gold is purified by heating in fire, and beating with a hammer, in the same way the jiva who engages in sense enjoyment and non-devotion to Krishna, is purified by putting him on the anvil of the material world, and beating him with the hammer of miseries.
The misery of the conditioned jiva, ultimately brings him pleasure. Thus misery is an instance of the Lord’s mercy. Therefore the misery of the jivas as part of Krishna’s lila, appears auspicious to farsighted ,and miserable to the short sighted.
The Lord’s material energy is inert. No pleasure results from lila with inert matter, “because an inert object without free will, is very insignificant.” The jivas, owing to their free will ,attempt to lord it over matter, and the duality of misery and happiness is set in motion. This is really a state of mind, but ultimately the sense of misery leads the jiva to enquire about happiness. So misery has an important function: it serves as impetus for the weak jivas to take to spiritual life and become strong.
The end result of material happiness is misery, and the end result of misery, spanning many lifetimes, is the happiness of Krishna consciousness. In this way, all aspects of lila, are possible for the one who is by nature lilamaya. Srila Bhaktivinoda continues:
“The misery in the conditioned state is ultimately auspicious, yet it is painful at present, was it not possible for the omnipotent Lord to find some other solution to this miserable process?”
“Krishna’s lila is very wonderful and of myriad types. This is also one type of lila. The Supremely independent Lord performs all types of lila, why would He not perform this type? To maintain all varieties no lila can be abandoned. Besides, even if some other types of lila have to be performed in that also the ingredients (jivas) have to accept some form of trouble.
Lord Krishna is a person and an agent. All ingredients (jivas) are under the will of the person and are the objects of the subject, who is a person. Being under the will of an agent, it is natural that some misery comes. If that misery is ultimately pleasurable, however, then it is not misery. Why are you calling it misery? The apparent misery which nourishes Lord Krishna’s lila is supremely blissful for the jiva. Abandoning the pleasure part of Lord Krishna, the jiva, who has free will, has accepted the misery, which comes as a result of absorption in maya. In this, if anyone is to be blamed, then that is the jiva, not Krishna.”