नानात्मकत्वाद् विफलस्तथा भेदात्मधीर्गुणै: ॥ ३ ॥
dhyāyato vā manorathaḥ
tathā bhedātma-dhīr guṇaiḥ
suptasya — of one who is sleeping; viṣaya — sense gratification; ālokaḥ — seeing; dhyāyataḥ — of one who is meditating; vā — or; manaḥ-rathaḥ — merely a creation of the mind; nānā — a large variety; ātmakatvāt — due to having the nature of; viphalaḥ — bereft of the real perfection; tathā — in that way; bheda-ātma — in that which is separately constituted; dhīḥ — intelligence; guṇaiḥ — by the material senses.
One who is sleeping may see many objects of sense gratification in a dream, but such pleasurable things are merely creations of the mind and are thus ultimately useless. Similarly, the living entity who is asleep to his spiritual identity also sees many sense objects, but these innumerable objects of temporary gratification are creations of the Lord’s illusory potency and have no permanent existence. One who meditates upon them, impelled by the senses, uselessly engages his intelligence.
Because the fruits of material work are temporary, it ultimately does not matter whether or not one obtains them; the final result is the same. Materialistic activities can never award the highest perfection of life, Kṛṣṇa consciousness. The material intelligence, impelled by the senses, strongly desires sense gratification. As stated here (bhedātma-dhīḥ), such intelligence actually separates one from one’s real self-interest. Thus the intelligence, absorbed in that which is materially favorable and unfavorable, becomes divided in pursuit of innumerable categories of material advancement. Such divided intelligence is impotent and cannot understand the Absolute Truth, the Personality of Godhead, Śrī Kṛṣṇa. The devotees of the Lord, however, have their intelligence fixed on one point — Lord Kṛṣṇa. They meditate upon the Lord’s form, qualities, pastimes and devotees, and thus their intelligence is never separated from the Absolute Truth. As stated in Bhagavad-gītā (2.41):
bahu-śākhā hy anantāś ca
“Those who are on this path are resolute in purpose, and their aim is one. O beloved child of the Kurus, the intelligence of those who are irresolute is many branched.”
If one is not Kṛṣṇa conscious, he is uselessly dreaming without any understanding of his eternal situation. The material intelligence will always devise novel means of achieving happiness, and therefore one bounces from one fruitless program of sense gratification to another, ignoring the simple fact that all material things are temporary and will disappear. In this way one’s intelligence becomes infected with material lust and greed, and such infected intelligence cannot bring one to the true goal of life. One should hear from the bona fide spiritual master whose intelligence is pure, and then one will come to Kṛṣṇa consciousness, the highest perfection of life.