The jivas, or the real selves, are the eternal servants of Sri Krishna. The cause of our affliction is forgetfulness of our relationship with Supreme Lord Sri Krishna. So we have to remember Him. How can we remember Him? If we can always remember Krishna then there will be no more difficulty. He is All-Existence, All-Knowledge, All-Bliss and this worldly existence is just the opposite—it is the shadow of the internal potency of Supreme Lord Sri Krishna. When we become averse we see the shadow. The shadow of a tree resembles the tree, but in the shadow of the tree there is no substance. In the tree there is substance. Similarly, the Supreme Lord, Sri Krishna is All-Substantiality. But when we become averse to Him, we see nescience before us, devoid of existence, devoid of knowledge, and devoid of happiness. But we perceive it to be eternal. As Brahma says:
tasmad idam jagad asesam asat-svarupam
svapnabham asta-dhisanam puru-duhkha-duhkham
tvayy eva nitya-sukha-bhodha-tanav anante
mayata udyad api yat sad ivavabhati
(Srimad Bhagavatam, 10. 14. 22)
The entire material cosmos, not just this world, is non-eternal, perishable. It is like a dream. At the time of seeing a dream, we think it to be reality. When we awaken from a dream, we realize it was all false. Like this, everything we are seeing of these non-eternal relations is a dream. We are laughing, we are crying, etc. But when we wake up from it we shall see that it is all nothing.
“Svapnabham asta-dhisanam:” Brahma says that if we engage our intellect in matter, in non-eternal things, in order to get material development, then our intelligence will be finished. Yet we think that it is a very wise person who is dedicating his energy to cultivate material development. We say, “You are wise.” But here Brahma says that this person’s knowledge will be finished: asta-dhisanam. Instead of happiness, he is getting severe miseries. Everyone wants happiness. Yes, he is trying to find happiness, but he is misdirected. Being averse to Sri Krishna, he is going towards the mirage: “If I get this or that thing, I shall be happy.” This world seems to eternally exist, it seems to possess knowledge and it seems therefore, to possess happiness. But it is in fact devoid of existence, devoid of knowledge and devoid of happiness.
— Srila Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Goswami Maharaj