Well, whenever we think ourselves as bodies only, we think that we are limited. Our power is limited, our goodness is limited, & anyone from outside may harm us or disturb our goodness. This is the bondage which gives limitation to our thoughts & does not allow expressing our inner power, our eternal Divinity. We start to fear, as we think ourselves weaker than others. Thus our eternal Divine nature & eternal pure energy is covered with the highest superstition that, ‘It is I, & I am a body.’ This is the ‘small I’ which chokes the path to our salvation.
Again, we are thinking we are weak, & we have fear too. That is the highest sin Swamiji mentioned. He says,
“The root of evil is in the illusion that we are bodies. This, if any, is the original sin.” This illusion that ‘I am body’ is the origin of all weakness, all fear & as well as all negative thoughts. So it makes us impure & sinners. All the souls, even being suns, are covered by this cloud of illusion or Maya, & salvation becomes difficult. Also, thus man becomes a sinner.
So what is the way to recover this?
We must think ourselves as soul first. This is the initial step to defeat & remove Maya. When we think so, we feel that we are not mere bodies; there is an eternal Energy & Divinity within us which can do everything. We are parts of God. God is present within us, & we have the ability to conquer all difficulties with His Grace & Power. Then we get an immense energy from the inner side & almost all weakness & fear is vanished. Then we can think positive & those positive thoughts spread a positive wave of goodness over the universe. Thus the whole universe is benefited including ourselves. As a part of God, we are the sparks of the Paramatman, which Swamiji described as ‘the great Eternal Fire’, so we have part of Divine Energy in this state, as a spark of fire carries the heat of fire. This is the Vishishtadwaita theory which helps man to identify himself first.
We have to be very careful when we start thinking so. At times, we just pretend to think, but we actually cannot think because we don't gain the depth of thought. This thought requires continuous practice, i.e., even though we fail thinking so initially, we must not give up. In our day to day life, we have to practice this thought, and reading good books and taking to likeminded people help.
But this is not the final conclusion. We are not only the parts of that Eternal Fire. We are that Fire itself. When we know that we are Atman, then all illusions, all Maya is vanished. Then we can feel that there is nothing impossible for us, there is nothing to defeat us, and there is nothing negative within us, because, ‘I am He! I am He!’. Then we become entirely Pure & Divine, as we become God. The whole heat of the Eternal Fire then comes with the ‘small I’ & thus the ‘small I’ burns out. From its ashes rises the ‘Bigger I’. This is the Advaita which gives salvation.
May Swamiji Bless us all with this Knowledge!