Lust and Love

Q. In Gita chapter 3, Srila Prabhupada said that our original love for God has got converted into lust. If we want to get love for God then we have to convert this lust into love for Krishna. Does this mean that lust is inversely proportional to love for Krishna? Can’t we have lust and love for Krishna both in our heart? Is not there anything else that can be converted into love for Krishna? Does this mean that the more I break lust in my heart the more I can get love for Krishna and there is no other way?

A. In Caitanya-caritamrita, Adi-lila (4.165), we find this definition of love and lust:atmendriya-priti-vancha—tare bali ‘kama’/ krishnendriya-priti-iccha dhare ‘prema’ nama: “The desire to gratify one’s own senses is kama [lust], but the desire to please the senses of Lord Krishna is prema [love].”

Lust does not only mean the desire to enjoy the opposite sex. Any desire to enjoy separate from Krishna is lust, either gross or subtle. So the more we develop love for Krishna, the lust or the desire to enjoy sense gratification, reduces. Thus it is true that lust is inversely proportional to love for Krishna.

Artificially breaking lust by repressing or subduing it will not help to attain love for Krishna. Love of Krishna is a positive thing that we need to develop.