In the previous episode, we had witnessed the culmination of the important event of “Gajendra Moksha”, wherein Bhagawan Vishnu rushes from his Vaikunta abode, so as to protect the poor elephant Gajendra, which was in deep pain due to the clutch of a crocodile. As elephant Gajendra calls out fervently for help and prays to Bhagawan with a great intensity, Bhagawan rushes immediately to protect the poor elephant. Heavily injured as he was, elephant Gajendra was almost in a speechless state due to the immense pain and upon seeing this, Bhagawan Narayana Himself sat on the floor and tried to nurse all the injuries that it had sustained! Upon seeing this sight, all the great saints, Devas (Celestial Beings), Bhagawan Brahma, etc. were all surprised to bits! All of them talk amongst each other thus, “Oh wow! What kind of compassion is this! Upon seeing an elephant suffering, Bhagwan just threw everything apart and rushed down to protect it! How fortunate is this elephant to get a direct nursing and protection from Bhagawan Himself!” Goddess Mahalakshmi Herself was shell-shocked upon seeing this event unfolding! She was thinking within herself thus, “Oh wow! When I had incarnated as Mother Sita, I was abducted by Ravana for almost 10 months, and not even once during this time, Bhagawan turned towards me to protect me! Now that this elephant had just made one fervent call and Bhagawan is rushing all the way to help it!” As Bhagawan Narayana addresses the prayer to elephant Gajendra thus, He even goes to the extent to grant the highest “Moksha” to the elephant as well!
Now what are the lessons that we can learn from this important event? The first and the most important lesson that all of us can observe is that, Bhagawan is an embodiment of compassion and He would transcend immediately to His ardent devotees to protect them from any form of imminent danger that might confront of them. All that is required from us is our ardent devotion and if we’re securing a “tick mark” in this, we can be rest assured that Bhagawan is always going to be with us at all times. Secondly, we can witness the power of “Nama-Sankeertana” or chanting of the divine names of Bhagawan. Readers might remember that we’ve previously witnessed the story of Ajaamila and how did he obtain Moksha by “accidentally chanting” Bhagawan’s divine name of Narayana. Similar is the story here as well – When elephant Gajendra chanted Bhagawan’s divine name of Narayana, he had immediately attracted Bhagawan Himself towards him! Thus, as a corollary to this point, we can see here that Bhagawan’s divine names are more powerful than Bhagawan Himself! 😊
Thirdly, it is not that only human beings can attain “Moksha”. Bhagawan is equally compassionate towards all living beings in this world, irrespective of whether it is an ant or an elephant or a monkey, or a squirrel, etc. We’ve witnessed in our Ramayana episodes itself as to how Bhagawan Rama granted Moksha to all the Vaanaras, isn’t it? We’ve witnessed how Vaanaras (Monkeys) like Hanuman, Angadha, Sugriva, Vaali, etc. performed their duties towards Bhagawan Rama to the best of their abilities and thereby attained Moksha! To go a step further, we’ve witnessed how Hanuman’s exceptional devotion towards Bhagawan Rama made Him transfer all His divine powers to Hanuman before ascending to Vaikunta, isn’t it? Inn addition, we’ve seen how a little squirrel involved itself in the “Rama-Kainkarya” (Service towards Bhagawan Rama) during the construction of the “Ram-Sethu” bridge at Rameshwaram. The selfless involvement of the squirrel brought tears in Bhagawan Rama’s eyes and therey granted Moksha to it straightaway! Here too, Gajendra, although being an elephant, exhibited the highest level of devotion towards Bhagawan Narayana and thereby attained Moksha. Hence, it is important for all of us to understand that Bhagawan views all living beings equally in His eyes. Irrespective of whether we are a human being or any other form of animal, all of us have been given equal opportunities by Bhagawan to try in our own ways to strive towards attaining Moksha. All what is important is whether we are sincere in our attempt or not.
Of course, if an elephant or a monkey or a squirrel can attain Moksha with its devotion, what is stopping human beings like us, who boast of having the “sixth” and “extra” sense of thinking and discrimination, who has the ability to chant and sing the divine names of Bhagawan? In fact, since we have all these extra abilities blessed by Bhagawan, we should find it a step easier than other animals to undertake the pursuit of attaining “Moksha”! But sadly, are we doing that today? Every passing day, we spend most of our time in doing all sorts of work that only add to our selfish worldly goals in life. Are we allocating some time for Bhagawan to atleast thank Him for all what He had given us? Forget Moksha, atleast a thanks-giving is the bare minimal thing that we can do for Bhagawan for all what He has given us, isn’t it? We should thus ask within ourselves whether we’re doing this or not!
At times when we are happy and contented, we never even think of Bhagawan, and our thoughts and actions are directly solely towards enjoying whatever we have! However, when there is a problem that is raging along, that is perhaps the only time when we think about Bhagawan, isn’t it? The moment we’re confronted with a problem, all of us start running towards temples, astrologers, doing this or that spiritual offerings, etc. My question here is that, why don’t we have the same urge to run to the same temple when we’re fit and fine? This is exactly where elephant Gajendra too missed the trick. When he was initially caught by the crocodile, he was thinking that he can overcome the crocodile with all his might as an elephant! At that time, he never even thought about Bhagawan, although elephant Gajendra was an ardent devotee! It is only when the clutch of the crocodile became so intense and when elephant Gajendra was almost at the verge of giving up his life, did he think of Bhagawan for a second! Even for that one second of prayer, if Bhagawan is responding spontaneously, imagine what would have been Bhagawan’s response when he would have prayed in the beginning itself! This is where all of us miss out as well. Initially during the onset of any problem or issue, our ego takes over and we think that we’re the all-pervasive! We try different tricks in the trade to come out of the problem, only to meet up with failure repeatedly and complicating the problem more and more! However, if we can surrender ourselves to Bhagawan and perform our tasks, if there is any sort of problem that comes through, Bhagawan is automatically going to protect us, isn’t it? This is the level of spiritual maturity that we’ve to develop as we move on.
Hence for today, let us ponder over all these important lessons that we can learn from this “Gajendra Moksha” event, and let us try and implement them in our daily lives as well. I’m repeatedly saying this to all our readers – it is not enough for us to read all these and get away! Implementation is the most important part here. We should make a conscious effort to implement whatever we’re learning here. We shall wait till the next episode to witness the next important and interesting event that Sage Sukhaachaarya is going to narrate. Stay tuned! 😊