This morning, reading the 7th Chapter of Bhagavad gita, which usually gives me some transcendental pleasure, a question that had previously come up for me reappeared. Why did we, the marginal energy of the Lord, make the wrong choice to come to this material world? Why, if we are superior energy, did we not choose to remain under the protection of the internal energy, rather than be covered by the inferior energy? Now the obvious answer i know: as part & parcel of Parambrahman, we have a spark of free will. Free will is intrinsic to our nature as jivas. So we were given a choice, and we chose to enter the material world to compete with Krishna, to act as false enjoyers and lords. But that begs the question: how could we have made that choice when anyone in knowledge would never have made it, knowing that the consequences would be endless suffering here in this material world?
It does not seem possible to me that we, as jivas, were in knowledge when we made this basic choice. That would imply that we were covered by ignorance from our very beginning. The Sanskrit term, nitya bandha, implies the same: eternally conditioned. So then the question comes back to Krishna. Why, as the all merciful (karuna sindu) friend of the fallen (dina bandhu) would the Supreme Lord cover his own children, his parts and parcels, by ignorance, from what appears to be their very beginning, knowing they would then make the wrong choice?
So, this is my question. If i were deeply sincere, like Adwaita Acarya when he could not understand one verse in the Gita, i would fast until Krishna kindly revealed some answer or gave me an insight to clear up this doubt. Since i am an insincere rascal, such austerity and determination are not possible for me.
I know that this question is related to the controversy over where the jiva actually comes from. I don't buy the official "BBT" version that the jiva was with Krishna in the spiritual world in his original swarup and then fell down. No one falls down from Goloka. I also know that Srila Prabhupada spoke and wrote various different perspectives on this subject, but he stressed that it is not important to know how we got here, but absolutely necessary to know how to get out. Still, our philosophy should be able to clearly explain the ontology of the jiva. How and why did we make this terrible choice to enter samsara?
Ironically, it may only be after we are well on our way out that we'll understand the answer.