In the previous episode, we had witnessed Sage Paraashara’s important answer to Sage Maithreya’s question as to how do we prevent ourselves from getting into the clutches of the treacherous “Naraka Lokhas”. In fact, this is one question that might have been lingering in our minds as well, when Sage Paraashara was deeply explaining Naraka Lokha after Naraka Lokha and their “royal treatments”! Perhaps Sage Maithreya too was petrified when he heard this in person from Sage Paraashara. To be very blunt, atleast, we’re just reading all of these thousands and thousands of years later. However, Sage Maithreya was “on the spot” when Sage Paraashara was describing all of these. We can imagine how petrified he would have become, although he was a great sage. As Sage Maithreya asks thus, Sage Paraashara explains beautifully how Bhagawan Vishnu is the only savior for all of us from reaching the “Naraka Lokhas”. If we’re chanting His divine names continuously with ardent devotion (Naama-Sankeertanam), these names themselves have the inordinate power to protect us from the Naraka Lokha, and take us to Vaikunta without any harm done.
This is exactly what Sage Aadi Shankara explained in his “Bhaja Govindam” song too. He says how the “Govinda Naama” (Sacred name of Bhagawan Govinda) is the only one that is going to give us liberation, and nothing else. In the first stanza that we saw yesterday, there is a phrase called “Dukrunkarane” towards the end. This phrase has a beautiful meaning here. “Dukrunkarane” indicates the “Damaru” or the “Drum” which is there in Bhagawan Shiva’s hands. Many of us might have seen it and might have known about it too. It is believed that all the alphabets that we have today, all the syllables that we use today, such as “Ka”, “Kha”, “Ga”, “Gha”, “Nga”, “A”, “Aa”, “E”, etc. were born when Bhagawan Shiva played this divine drum called “Damaru”. Thus, by invoking Bhagawan Shiva’s “Damaru”, Sage Aadi Shankara drives home the important point thus, “Oh Moodamathe! (Stupid person)! Please understand that your education – Be it whatever that you’ve learnt, is not going to help you towards the end of your life to attain “Moksha”. It is only the “Govinda-Naama” that is going to be of help, if you’ve to reach “Moksha”. Thus, the significance of “Naama-Sankeertana” is beautifully brought out by Sage Aadi Shankarachaarya, which is what Sage Paraashara is exactly talking about here.
This is why, not only Sage Aadi Shankaraachaarya, every “Mahatma” or the “Spiritual Master” would say the same thing. One important point that all of us should note here is the significance of chanting our “Mantra” constantly. No matter whatever we keep doing in our day-to-day routine life, we should develop the habit of “internally” chanting Bhagawan’s divine names as we keep doing our duties. This might be tough initially, but this is why I use the phrase “Internally chanting”. We would find it difficult to attain such a state straightaway, but we’ve to start somewhere isn’t it? Obviously the first step for all of us to do is to approach our “Guru” (Spiritual Master) and obtain the “Mantra Upadesha” from Him / Her. Once this is done, we’ve to fix up a routine for our “Mantra Chanting” and we can initially fix a target of how many times per day we’ve to chant the Mantra. Initially, we can fix up a target of around 108 times to start with. Gradually as days and months progress, we can slowly increase the number every passing day, depending on our daily routines and duties. As time goes by, we should slowly start chanting the Mantra every minute that we’re awake, and this process leads us to the “internalization” of our Mantra. Thus, it is a process and is not something that we can achieve overnight. We should consciously put that effort in the positive direction to achieve it. Of course there would be obstacles in the middle, but we’ve to develop that maturity to cross over these obstacles and be steadfast in our mission. Ultimately we should remember that one goal for which all of us are striving – “Attaining Moksha”. We should do anything and everything possible to achieve it, isn’t it?
We should always remember that chanting “Mantras” are extremely powerful and it adds a lot of good vibrations around us. Moreover, constant chanting of our Mantra protects us from imminent dangers that we come across in our daily lives. There are innumerable instances to prove this point but owing to lack of time, etc. I do not want to get into that. However, all of us would be able to experience it if we start following this point. In fact, giving explanations beyond a point doesn’t really make sense. Certain things in life are deeply understood only if we experience them, isn’t it?
Moreover, another way of looking at it is that consistent “Mantra chanting” is perhaps the only way in this “Kali Yuga” to overcome our sins. It is mentioned in various contexts in our “Sanaatana Dharma” literature that as we keep chanting our “Mantra”, our sins start getting burnt away then and there. In fact, if we’re meticulously doing this every passing day, there is no need for us to go to any astrologer for any sort of “Parihaara” or “Praayaschittha”. The Mantra given to us by a “Sadguru” or a “Mahatma” is so powerful that it would automatically wash away all our sins and the resultant bad repercussions. We should understand this very clearly, and this is an important offshoot discussion of the significance of “Naama-Sankeertanam”.
So for today, let us understand this point clearly and let us start putting efforts consciously from today onwards. It is never too late to start any good practice. Bhagawan is never going to ask us about our past. All what He expects from us is that, whether we’re following His advice in the present day and in the future to come. So let us all take a pledge today (Being the 72’nd Republic Day of our great Bhaarata Desha) that we would strive together in chanting the “Mantra” and would create a case for ourselves to represent to Bhagawan for our journey towards the ultimate “Moksha”! We shall wait till the next episode to continue with Sage Paraashara’s accord forward! Stay tuned! 🙂