Episode # 387 – “I’m omni-present within the “Atmans” of all living beings!” – Bhagawan Krishna’s firm assertion!!!

In the previous episode, we had continued the discussion on the subject of “Equality”, and the reason behind Bhagawan Krishna emphasizing this point vehemently again and again at various instances. Here, as He’s giving important pieces of advice to Uddhava, Bhagawan Krishna talks about equality in the sense that those people who are able to see and treat all living beings equally in this world, are His greatest devotees. This is where, we’re witnessing series of points wherein we first started with the scenario amongst fellow human beings. Whether it is at home, or at office or at any public place, we should be able to view all human beings equally and should come forward to help all those people who are in need of it. Irrespecctive of whether it is he or a she, rich or poor, lower or upper caste, etc. we should be able to exercise our service to all human beings equally at all times.

In similar lines, in yesterday’s episode we had witnessed that we should not only treat human beings equally, but also animals and all other living beings as well. We had witnessed few instances in the previous episode as to how animals are much more devoted to Bhagawan than we are. We saw how Sugriva, Hanuman and the other Vaanaras were exceptional in this quality towards Bhagawan Rama and how did they get to reach the ultimate “Moksha”. In similar lines, we witnessed how a small squirrel was devoting itself in the ardent and selfless service towards Bhagawan Rama in building the Ram-Setu Bridge. Moved by its devotion, Bhagawan Rama granted “Moksha” to the squirrel immediately then and there! Similar is the case of Jataayu. When Ravana was abducting Mother Sita in full steam, it was none other than Jataayu who volunteered forward to rescue her. Jataayu was an eagle and all of us would be knowing this by now. He fought valiantly with Ravana, only for his wings to be razed by Ravana’s “Chandrahaasa” sword. Upon seeing Jataayu in this pitiable condition, Bhagawan Rama immediately grants “Moksha” to him then and there! In similar lines, we’ve witnessed how elephant Gajendra attained “Moksha” with its ardent prayers towards Bhagawan Naarayana.

Thus, in all of these instances, be it a squirrel, monkey, elephant, bird, etc. we’re able to witness ardent devotion in animals too, and hence, how can animals be inferior to us in any way? In fact, to be very honest, the devotion exhibited by animals is more intense and ardent than what we do! This is because, animals are innocent by nature and their devotion is blind and pure. Whereas, we human beings have so many prejudices while we pray to Bhagawan! Most of the times we only pray to Bhagawan for fulfilling our own selfish personal needs and greeds. We’ve witnessed this point too when we spoke about the three classifications of “Bhakti” towards Bhagawan. Thus, the point here is that, we should also treat animals with equal respect and magnanimity like how we treat our fellow human beings. We should realize that animals are in no way inferior to us, just because we’re not seeing them talking and walking like how we do! Just like how we have our right to live our life our own way, animals too have the same right and is given by Bhagawan to them also. Hence, we should refrain from hurting any animal in even a small way, and instead try to shower love and affection towards them.

This is where we see another difference as well – For people who have pets at home, they would be able to appreciate this point much better. The amount of respect and love that animals show towards us is immense and unconditional. If we take one step towards them, they take hundred steps towards us and shower all their love! If such is the case, isn’t it our duty to take care of them in the nicest way possible? Thus, if we’re having pets or if there are even some stray dogs or cats nearby, we should develop this habit of feeding them with food first, before we consuming food. Especially if we have pets at home, it is our bound duty to feed them first before having our food. We should ensure that these animals are well-nourished and happy. This is one step that we can take in the forward direction in treating animals equally.

Now that we’ve witnessed so much about human beings and animals – We’ve to also understand that plants and trees are integral part of the sphere, when we talk about “living beings”. Even the smallest of the small plants and saplings have an “Atman” within them, which has manifested in the form of that plant as its physical body. Of course, we know that plants have the capability to grow, just like how we do. However, there are extensive research studies today that prove that just like how we have emotions and feelings, plants and trees have too! There are numerous experiments that are continuously being conducted to prove the same. If we’re growing a plant with all our love and affection by watering it periodically, it is going to blossom with very attractive flowers and fruits. However, if we’re going to show restraint towards it, the plant can understand our negative emotions too very well, and they react to it by not growing to their full potential.

Thus, how can all these happen? It is only because someone is making all of it happen! This someone is none other than Bhagawan Himself! Thus, the important message from today’s episode is that, Bhagawan is omni-present inside all the “Atmans” and it is He who is enabling this entire world to be nourished with fresh green plants and trees, animals roaming around happily, along with human beings like us too. So for today, let us understand this point and let us realize Bhagawan in all living beings around us, including plants and animals! Let us all take a vow from today that we would not hurt even a single living being and we would treat all living beings with equal love and respect. We shall wait till the next episode to witness the continuation of this discussion between Bhagawan Krishna and Uddhava further! Stay tuned! 🙂

Episode # 386 – Animals are a step higher than human beings in exhibiting “Bhakti” – Some illustrations!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed yet another important point on “Equality”, which was stressed by Bhagawan Krishna to Uddhava. Here, Bhagawan Krishna continues from where He left in His previous point on the “Kartruthva Buddhi”. He beautifully links this point with the next by saying that those who are able to treat all living beings equally are His ardent devotees, along with those who realize that they are mere instruments in His divine hands! Equality as a point is important here because we tend to differentiate between people in terms of social status, rich / poor, male / female, etc. quite easily and this is where Bhagawan Krishna keeps the check for all of us. All of us in this world are Bhagawan’s children and for Him, all of us are equal, just like our parents would treat all their children equally. This is an extremely important point because, with the normal way of life, due to our ego and various other reasons, we tend to differentiate between us and others in lot of ways.

In that way, one more thing can happen in terms of “inequality” – We even tend to brand others as “less devoted to Bhagawan than what we are”! Is this right on our part to brand people like this? We should think for a moment here – Are we “Mahatmas” who were born with ardent devotion? We too were straying around all this while and it is only now that we’re getting into the track of Bhakti and Bhagawan, isn’t it? Some of us might might have even had disastrous previous births and who knows, we might have even been the most hardcore aethists too! Just because today we’re so and so, doesn’t mean that yesterday and in our previous births we were the same, isn’t it? Hence, we’ve to realize this point and just because we see someone not as devoted to Bhagawan as we are today, we shouldn’t underestimate them in any way. If we’ve to go by the ideal condition that right from day one of our birth we’ve to exhibit ardent devotion towards Bhagawan unconditionally, very few people might be like that. Only Mahatmas and Aachaaryas would have such an ideal quality in them.

For instance, we’ve witnessed the case of Prahalaada in our previous episodes. We had witnessed how he was devoted to Bhagawan Vishnu right from the day of his birth. No matter how much he was tortured by his father, Hiranya Kashibu, neither he was unfazed, nor he got angry on his father for treating him miserably like that. Instead, Prahlaada only tried correcting his father towards Bhagawan Narayana. We’ve also witnessed that even when Prahlaada was in acute dangerous and life-threatening situations, he was totally immersed in his thoughts towards Bhagawan Narayana, in such a way that he did not even realize that he was in such a precarious situation. Now let us think here – How many of us are like this in terms of devotion, even as we “brand” ourselves as “more devoted to Bhagawan than others”? In reality, our devotion towards Bhagwan would increase only when we face problems and troubles. However, if we’re happy and smooth with our life, we wouldn’t even think about Bhagawan! We would conveniently forget that there’s someone called Bhagawan who’s making us live happy and contented. Such is the case of our devotion in most of our cases! Now, whatever I’m saying here, might be a little provocative to few of us as we read through, but unfortunately, this is the harsh reality and we’ve to accept it and correct ourselves as we move on.

Of course, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t seek Bhagawan’s help while we are undergoing a suffering in life. We should definitely do it. However, when we’re happy and contented, we should also have the heart to thank Bhagawan for whatever good things He had done to us. If we do not have this level of maturity within us, what right do we have to pin-point others who seemingly aren’t devoted much? Moreover, many a times, we might come to a conclusion just by looking at the external appearance of someone, or by just observing their behaviour for just one single day! This is a wrong thing to do. We never know how this person might be on other days and appearances can be deceiving too! Hence, the point here is that, when we talk about equality, we should first of all stop “branding” people to be bad, just because of one or two instances or appearance or actions that they perform. In fact, this is the first step towards following Bhagwan’s point on equality. Rest all other things would automatically be taken care of later. We should realize that all of us are equal under Bhagawan’s eyes and all of us are His children. We should first respect that in everybody around us.

Secondly, we should be able to extend this same aspect to animals and other living beings as well. Just because that living being would be a dog or a cat or a mouse or whatever it might be, it doesn’t mean that it is inferior to us in any way. Just like how we have our right to live our own life in whatever way we like to, those living beings also have the equal right to live their lives in their own ways. Thus, just because we tend to “think” and “talk” and “move around” much more freely than animals, it simply doesn’t mean that they are inferior in any way. In fact, we’ve witnessed in many instances in our “Sanaatana Dharma” literature that even animals have attained the highest “Moksha” along with human beings. For instance, we’ve witnessed this episode of “Gajendra Moksha” few episodes back, wherein we’ve seen how elephant Gajendra was an ardent devotee of Bhagawan Narayana and ultimately reached “Moksha” with its devotion. Similarly, we’ve witnessed in the Ramayana how monkeys, eagles and squirrils have attained “Moksha” because of their ardent devotion. We’ve witnessed the likes of Jatayu, Sampaathi, etc. who were eagles. They had devoted their entire lifes and even sacrificed their lives for “Rama Kainkarya” isn’t it? Similarly, we’ve witnessed how the squirrel helped the Vaanaras while building the Ram-Sethu bridge. Awestruck by it’s ardent devotion, Bhagawan Rama was moved to tears of joy, and He granted “Moksha” to that squirrel immediately! Similarly, there are innumerable instances wherein various animals were also part of the “Bhakti-Maarga”, along with human beings.

Thus the point here is that, even animals are in no way inferior to us when it comes to Bhakti. In fact, animals are a step higher than human beings in exhibiting Bhakti because they’re pure and innocent in nature. Their Bhakti is extremely blind and one-pointed! Whereas, we human beings have lot of doubts, prejudice, etc. while we practice Bhakti! Hence for today, let us understand that all living beings are equal and it is our duty as ardent followers of our “Sanaatana Dharma” to treat all living beings with love and compassion! We shall wait till the next episode to witness the next important point! Stay tuned! 🙂

Episode # 385 – “Those who are able to see all living beings equally are my greatest devotees” – Bhagawan Krishna to Uddhava!!!

In the previous episode, we had continued the important discussion on why should we let go off our “Kartrutva Buddhi” by witnessing few instances from the Ramayana and Mahabharata. We had spoken about Hanuman in the Ramayana and Arjuna from the Mahabharata, as to how did they succeed in their respective missions by shedding this “Kartruthva Buddhi” off them. The moment Hanuman surrendered himself to Bhagawan Rama’s lotus feet, and the moment he prayed to Mother Sita to reveal her identity all by herself, rather than “he” searching for her, Mother Sita immediately appeared beneath the very tree on which Hanuman was sitting. Similarly, when Arjuna was carried away by the “Kartruthva Buddhi” during the Kurukshetra war, he was so distressed and disturbed that “he” is going to kill all his family members and destroy an entire “Vamsa” (Clan) in the pretext of a war and a kingdom! This is where, Bhagawan Krishna advises Arjuna to shed off this thought, and perform his duty as a “Kshatrya”, by surrendering the fruit of his actions to Bhagawan’s feet. The moment Arjuna had shed off his “Kartruthva Buddhi”, all of us know what happened after that, and it is for us to analyze the aftermath of the Bhagawad Gita!

Moving forward thus, Bhagawan Krishna explains to Uddhava, “Oh Uddhava! Apart from this “Sathvika Bhakti” that is being practised by my ardent devotees by shrugging off the “Kartruthva Buddhi”, I like those who are able to see everybody equally without celebrating any differences between each other! If a person is able to view all “Atmans” in the equal stature, irrespective of male / female, rich / poor, high status / low status, educated / uneducated, etc. and if he / she is able to treat all of them equally with the same level of universal love and compassion, he / she becomes my most ardent devotee and my best companion at Vaikunta! Even while they’re alive in this world, such people would be able to constantly keep obtaining my divine vision at all times! They needn’t put any special efforts beyond this! Thus, they would be able to see me with all my divinity clearly even before they attain Vaikunta!”

This is where we falter most of the times – The moment we see someone or some animal in front of us, we tend to walk past that living being, without giving any sort of respect to it. This is where Bhagawan Krishna keeps the check for all of us – If we’re seeing a living being suffering, irrespective of a man or an animal or a plant or an insect or whatever it might be – If one goes down to its level and alleviates its suffering to whatever extent he / she can, this is true devotion and this is true equality that Bhagawan Krishna is expecting us to do. This is what Bhagawan Rama illustrated to all of us in the Ramayana. We’ve witnessed this important point in our Ramayana project, wherein Valmiki Bhagawan is praising Bhagawan Rama with the leadership quality of “Samartaha”. This means, Bhagawan Rama treats every living being equally. For instance, when Bhagawan Rama went to Guha’s house on the way to the forest, He accepted Guha as his own brother. This Guha was afterall a hunter, whereas Bhagawan Rama was a great king from a great dynasty. Similarly, when Bhagawan Rama went in search of Mother Sita, he accepted Sugriva as his brother. Sugriva was afterall a monkey and not even a human being by birth! Still Bhagawan Rama accepted him and worked with him to destroy Vaali and restore the Kishkinta kingdom to Sugriva. Moreover, Bhagawan Rama’s greatest and the most ardent devotee being Hanuman, is a monkey again! Hanuman’s devotion towards Bhagawan Rama is world-famous isn’t it? Finally, when Vibhishana surrendered to Bhagawan Rama’s feet, He accepted Vibhishana as His brother! Vibhishana was afterall a “Raakshasa” and was Ravana’s brother. But, did Bhagawan Rama desert him? Thus, we can see here how Bhagawan Rama was an epitome of “walking the talk” when it comes to this important point of “equality”.

In fact, one of the most emotional scenes in the entire Ramayana was when the Vaanaras march back to Kishkinta after Hanuman has found Mother Sita’s whereabouts at Lanka. We’ve witnessed this when we were discussing the “Sundara Kanda” section of the Valmiki Ramayana. As the Vaanaras were jumping up and down with joy after knowing about Mother Sita, Bhagawan Rama initially did not understand why are these Vaanaras so happy! He thus bends down to the level of these tiny-looking Vaanaras, calls them lovingly near Him, one after the other and asks thus, “Oh! Tell me please! Did you see Sita?” Bhagawan Rama was asking each and every Vaanara with tears in His eyes. As Bhagawan Rama started asking thus, all the Vaanaras were overwhelmed with joy and the respect that they’re receiving from their leader! With that joy, they push Hanuman towards Bhagawan Rama by giving a clear message through their body language that it was this Hanuman who had crossed over the ocean and witnessed Mother Sita who is safe and secure without any harm.

Thus, the point here is that, we should learn from Bhagawan Rama’s “implemented message” that “equality” amongst all living beings is a very important virtue that all of us should try and follow. Just because someone is of a higher / lower status, etc. we should not discard people or underestimate them. We should also remember one point within ourselves here – Were we so ardent devotees of Bhagawan right from our birth? Most of the times, the answer would be a “No”! We’ve also crossed through many stages of being unaware, uneducated, etc. and only after that we’ve reached where we are currently! And, is that enough? Don’t we have an even more steeper ladder to climb towards Bhagawan? Hence, where is the need to have that pride or a “sense of achievement” or whatever, over others?

Hence, for today let us understand this important point and let us wait till the next episode to take this discussion further! Stay tuned! 😊

Episode # 384 – Letting go off our “Kartruthva Buddhi” – Examples of Arjuna & Hanuman!!!

In the previous episode, we had commenced an important discussion on why shouldn’t we possess the “Karthrutva Buddhi” while performing any action. In other words, Bhagawan Krishna is emphasizing the point that we should not have this attitude of “I am doing something” while performing our “Karma” our duties. Instead, we should always have the attitude of “Bhagawan is enabling me to peforming this”. This is where, we surrender our personal ego behind performing something and experiencing the results of our actions. This is what Bhagawan Krishna refers to letting go off our “Karthrutva Buddhi”.

In fact, this is not the first time that Bhagawan is talking about this point. In His Bhagawad Gita too, Bhagawan had spoken about this point at length to Arjuna. We might know this famous sloka from Bhagawd Gita:

“Karmanyeva adhikaaraste maa phaleshu kadaachana!”

Here, Bhagawan Krishna advises Arjuna that he shouldn’t worry about the fruits of the actions that he is going to perform. He should surrender all actions to Bhagawan’s lotus feet, take the “Gaandipa” (Bow) and start waging the battle. This was at a time when Arjuna got emotional upon seeing Bhishmaachaarya, Guru Dhronaachaarya and all his brothers standing in front of him on the opposition side. Arjuna loses himself and drops down the bow, coming to a conclusion that he’s not going to wage any battle against all his relatives and his own teacher! This is where, Bhagawan Krishna is motivating Arjuna to commence the fight. This is where the context becomes very important – Although Arjuna’s “Karma” as a “Kshatriya” prince was to wage wars and protect the country, he failed to commence his duties because of the “Maya” (Illusion) that he is going to be responsible for the demise of hundreds of innocent lives, including his own family members. Arjuna is getting to this state because he was high on the “Kartruthva Buddhi”, that it is he who is waging the war against Duryodhana and Co. Little did he remember and realize that it was Bhagawan Krishna who is using Arjuna and Co. as instruments to establish “Dharma” in the name of war.

Thus, if we’re able to develop this attitude that Bhagawan is the one who is executing all our actions through us, we would be letting off our “Kartruthva Buddhi” completely, and this is very important. But however, as I had mentioned in the yesterday’s episode itself, readers shouldn’t mistake this point by thinking, “Oh! We do not need to perform any of our duties and it is upto Bhagawan to take care of everything!” This is a wrong perspective here. We’ve to understand that the onus of performing our “Karma” is upon us, but the main point is that, we should perform our duties without expectations of the result or fruit of our “Karma”.

We can relate this point to Hanuman’s instances in the Ramayana as well – Initially when Hanuman crosses over the ocean and commences his “mega-search” for Mother Sita, he wasn’t able to find Her anywhere! He had gone lane after lane, street after street, passage after passage, house after house, palace after palace, etc. In fact, Hanuman had even searched every nook and corner of Ravana’s palace, but all his efforts went in vain! At this juncture, he starts getting demotivated and he doesn’t know what to do next. It is at this time, Hanuman suddenly realizes that till this moment, he had been searching for Mother Sita with the intent that “I’m the one who has taken this upon me and is doing it!” Now he changes his attitude a bit and prays to Bhagawan Rama thus, “Oh Bhagawan! Please forgive me for my selfish attitude! Till now I’ve made a great mistake! Now I’m realizing that it is you who’ve to show me the whereabouts of Mother Sita! It is you who’ve to enable me to obtain Her divine darshan!” Hanuman also prays to Mother Sita thus, “Oh Mother! If not anybody else, it is only you who should give me your divine darshan to this yearning child of yours! Please forgive me for my selfish attitude!”

As Hanuman prays thus to both Bhagawan Rama and Mother Sita, sitting on top of the “Simshupa Vriksha”, he was able to have the divine darshan of Mother Sita, just at the bottom of that very same tree! Thus, we can witness here too that when Hanuman was high on “Kartruthva Buddhi”, he wasn’t able to bare any fruit of his actions. However, the moment Hanuman let go off it, he was immediately able to see Mother Sita right below him! So from these two instances, we should understand that “Kartruthva Buddhi” is something that we’ve to discard, as we move on. Of course, it is easier said than done – Our ego wouldn’t enable us to do it right away! But we’ve to keep on trying. This is where we grow up spiritually.

So for today, let us realize and understand this important point emphasized by Bhagawan Krishna and we shall wait till the next episode to continue further! Stay tuned! 😊

Episode # 383 – “We’ve to let go off our ‘Karthruthva Buddhi’ while performing our Karma” – Bhagawan Krishna’s important advice!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of Bhagawan Krishna’s accord on the three categorizations of Bhakti and hence the recollection of the characteristics of the three important Gunas – “Satva Guna”, “Rajo Guna” and “Tamo Guna”. In the meanwhile, we also witnessed why is the “Gurukula” education having extreme significance in developing our “Satva Guna”, and why is it considered to be one of the highest in terms of imparting education. Hence, we should make it a point to understand all these significances and appreciate our ancient tradition, which has enormous scientific backing up behind each and every aspect of it.

Moving on thus, today we shall witness the concluding notes of Bhagawan Krishna to Uddhava, wherein He’s going to explain a very important aspect called “Paramaartha”. We’re going to witness what is “Paramartha” and what kind of “Paramartha” does Bhagawan like and adore the most.

“Hantate kathayishyaami mama dharmaan sumangalaan!

Yaachshraddhayaacharan marthyaha mruthunjaya durjayam!!”

Here, Bhagawan Krishna finally asserts few important points as part of the “Paramartha”. Bhagawan explains thus to Uddhava, “Oh Uddhava! Any person in this world who follows all what I’ve explained till now, in terms of Satva Guna, and thereby eliminating the Rajo Guna and Tamo Guna, is the most ardent devotee of mine! I shall have a special liking towards him / her. This devotee would be able to win over any kind of enemy in this world, with my divine grace, thus, ultimately attaining the highest Moksha quite easily!”

“Mayyah pitah manahschittaha dharmaatma manorataha!!”

Bhagawan Krishna continues further thus, “Oh Uddhava! Those who are able to surrender all their actions to my divine lotus feet, thus, leaving aside their “Karthruthva Buddhi”, is going to attain the highest Moksha without any doubt!” We might be wondering what is this term called “Karthruthva Buddhi” and why is Bhagawan talking about this here. “Karthruthva Buddhi” is where we have a thought amongst ourselves that it is we who are doing everything, and nobody else has any role in it. In other words, we perform actions with the “I” attitude and tend to take credit for all what we do successfully, isn’t it? This is called “Karthruthva Buddhi”. Little do we remember that if Bhagawan’s divine grace isn’t there, none of our actions are going to bear any fruit. Now how does this work? Why should we give up this “Karthruthva Buddhi”?

For instance, let us assume that we’re going for an interview for a new job – We might prepare for the interview, sitting up day and night, getting all our technical skills thoroughly brushed up in such a way that whatever questions that the interviewer would throw at us, we would be able to answer them in a jiffy! However, once we go to the bus station or to the airport to transport ourselves to the interview center, suddenly it might be the case that the bus is running late or our flight has got cancelled! Ultimately, either we end up going to the interview hall late, or we’ve to cancel the interview schedule fully! Now what has happened here? We’ve put our effort to the mark, but just because the divine grace wasn’t on our side, we were not able to pull off the interview, isn’t it? This is where we’ve to let go off our “Karthruthva Buddhi”. We should always have Bhagawan in our thoughts and prayers as we perform our actions.

Of course, readers should not mistake here that we should refrain from doing any action and leave everything to Bhagawan. I’m not saying this at all. We’ve to still perform our “Karma” and there’s no escape from that. However, when we’re performing our “Karma”, we should have the thought in our mind thus, “Oh! Bhagawan is making me do this action. I surrender the results of this action to Bhagawan’s feet! If this has to come out successfully, let Bhagawan’s divine grace make it happen!” This is what Bhagawan Krishna is explaining here – When He’s emphasizing that we’ve to let go off our “Karthrutva Buddhi”, it means that we should let go off the results and fruits of our actions, and not the action itself. We’ve to still perform our duties, but with the attitude of total surrender (“Sharanaagati”). This is where, Bhagawan Krishna explains that He would take over the rest of it and give the best result to His devotees for all their selfless actions!

So for today, let us understand this important point clearly and in the next episode, we shall witness some examples and illustrations of this point in our “Sanaatana Dharma” that would highlight this point in a better way! Stay tuned! 🙂

Episode # 382 – Those who undergo “GURUKULA” education are extremely high on “Satva Guna”! Why???

In the previous episode, we had witnessed some more aspects of “Satvika Bhakti” and “Raajasa Bhakti” as narrated by Bhagawan Krishna to Uddhava. In these lines, we had witnessed the significance of “Abisheka”, and few points that all of us must remember as we perform it at our homes, or at temples. We should make sure that we adhere to what is Bhagawan’s wish, and ultimately this is called “Satvika Bhakti”. Else, if we’re going to go by our own terms and conditions of exhitbiting Bhakti, by “commercializing” it for no reason, we’re only going to end up performing “Raajasa Bhakti”, which is not going to be in tune to what Bhagawan likes and wants from us. As we discussed this point, we also moved on to witness few other points as well, again with respect to our three Gunas. Bhagawan Krishna explains that if we’re able to enrich ourselves with the “Satva Guna”, we would always be able to stay alert at all times. We would be able to become “smart enough” to understand what goes on around us. We would have complete awareness. However, if we’re flying high on the “Rajo Guna”, we’d start feeling tired and stressed out. Ultimately we would get exhausted very soon, and our awareness to what is happening around us is going to decrease. In similar lines, if we’re scoring high on “Tamo Guna”, we’re going to keep sleeping forever! We’re only going to be in bed everytime with sheer laziness to do anything.

Thus, from the above point, we’re able to witness the significance of “Satva Guna” yet again. This is perhaps the n’th time that Bhagawan Krishna is emphasizing the importance of this point. From this, we can understand how much is Bhagawan expecting from us, in terms of developing our “Satva Guna”. The more we’re enriching our “Satva Guna”, our intelligence, shrewdness, alertness, etc. are going to be at their peak levels. This is why we would often witness that those people who are “Mahatmas”, or people who live a saintly life are extremely intelligent in nature. We might often come to a conclusion that only those of us who go through the “English school of education” that we’re currently doing, are intelligent, and those people who go for Vedic and “Paatashaala” education are dumb. This is a huge misconception and it needs to be corrected. People who are well-versed in the Vedic education are extremely high in “Satva Guna”, because, as per the nodalities of this education system, the “Sishya” (Student) is 24*7 indebted to the service of the “Guru” (Teacher). Hence, the focus of the student is completely on the study, rather than roaming around here and there. Moreover, with the grasping of Vedas and Upanishads, which are rough and tough in nature, their intellect gets sharpened to a greater extent. Also, since they’re well-versed in Sanskrit grammar, which is perhaps one of the toughest things to master in this world, they know exactly what to talk, how to talk and where to talk, at any given situation. All of this is possible because of their pin-pointed focus on their learning, which automatically increases the “Satva Guna” in them.

Thus the point here is that, people who are undergoing our Traditional Gurukula education, are those who are epitomes in “Satva Guna” in many ways. Hence, rather than underestimating them, we should learn how to inculcate the “Satva Guna” from them. Once we’re slowly enriching this in ourselves, automatically our alertness, awareness, astute shrewdness, etc. would be taken care of adequately.

Moving on further, as we’ve discussed yesterday, people who are high on “Rajo Guna”, tend to get stressed out very easily. They become fatigued with too much of anger and frustration even over small things in life. Their tolerance level is extremely low, because they lack the patience and perseverance to deal with tough situations in life. This is why we see some people who are extremely short-tempered in nature. The reason behind short-temparament is our lack of preparation to face the world with guts and patience. We’ve to thus, have a keen watch-out on this. Finally, those people who are high on “Taamasa Guna” would always be lazy and reluctant to do anything in life. These people are epitomes of procrastination and score very low in proactiveness in coming forward to do anything. This is because, our laziness takes center-stage and this is going to be utterly detrimental, both for our professional and personal life.

Hence, from this accord, we should make it a point that we follow all the possible steps that Bhagawan Krishna has narrated till now, to enhance our “Satva Guna”, thereby eliminating the “Rajo Guna” and “Tamo Guna” slowly and steadily. Once the “Satva Guna” starts to build up, automatically our “Rajo Guna” and “Tamo Guna” would start coming down. It is up to each one of us to experiment and check it for ourselves!

Finally after all these accords, Bhagawan Krishna explains what “Paramaartha” is and what is the “Paramaartha” that He likes the most! We shall commence this important discussion in the next episode! Stay tuned! 🙂

Episode # 381 – How does performing “Abhisheka” to Bhagawan differentiate between “Satvika Bhakti” & “Rajasa Bhakti”???

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the continuation of the conversation between Uddhava and Bhagawan Krishna, wherein Bhagawan Krishna is giving important pieces of advices to Uddhava. We’ve been witnessing this advice over the past few episodes now, and we’re at a stage wherein Bhagawan Krishna is talking about Bhakti in its three different forms – “Satvika Bhakti”, ‘Raajasa Bhakti” and “Taamasa Bhakti”. We’ve witnessed the definition of each of these three forms of Bhakti in our previous episodes, and in yesterday’s episode, we had witnessed how does one attain any “Lokha” after his / her stint at the “Manushya Lokha”. We’ve witnessed that although our present physical body (Shareera) gets destroyed at the end of this birth, our “Atman” assumes a different physical body with respect to the “Lokha” it travels to. For instance, if we traverse to the “Chandra Lokha”, “Surya Lokha”, “Svarga Lokha”, etc. we assume a physical form that is apt for enjoying all the experiences in these “Lokhas”. Similarly, if we’ve to traverse into the “Naraka Lokha”, again we’ve to assume a physical form that would be fit and fine to receive all the beatings, thrashings, fryings, etc. that we would face there! Finally, if we’ve to reach the “Vaikunta”, again, we’ve to assume the physical form that is apt for that as well. Once we traverse through the “Archiraadhi Maarga” and cross over from the “Virajaa river”, we would be assuming the form that is apt for us to live in Vaikunta forever.

Moving on further thus, Bhagawan Krishna is going to explain what are the corresponding actions that would constitute each form of Bhakti that we’ve seen till now. We’ve so far defined what the three forms of Bhakti are, and now we’re going to see the constituent actions that would result out of these three Bhakti forms. For instance, if we’re going to take pots and pots of milk, curd, etc. and pour it over Bhagawan’s idol, just in the form of “Abisheka”, it is all going to go waste isn’t it? This, according to Bhagawan Krishna, pertains to “Raajasa Bhakti”. However, if we’re pouring little bit of milk or curd on Bhagawan and if we’re offering the rest to Him as “Neivedhya” and further, distributing it to the needy, this is what accounts to “Satvika Bhakti”. Did Bhagawan even say that all the 100 pots of milk should be poured upon His head and only then He would bless us? He has never said such things. All what is important here is that, the “Abisheka” should be done for world peace and harmony. It should not become a mere ritual by pouring pots and pots of milk, curd, etc. on Bhagawan, just for the sake of doing it. Instead, if a limited amount of these items are used for the “Abhisheka” and the rest, given as food for the needy to consume, this is real Bhakti. Ultimately, in the name of Bhagawan, we’re contributing to the betterment of the world.

As we read through this, readers shouldn’t mistake and misunderstand this point here. In fact, this is always a controversial point to talk about. I’m not saying here that we should stop doing “Abisheka”. We should perform it as a sacred spiritual ritual for Bhagawan, and there is no doubt about it. However, what I’m trying to emphasize here is that, if we’re performing the “Abhisheka” for Bhagawan, we should also be courteous enough to offer some of the items to the needy as well, by offering the items to Bhagawan before distribution. This becomes a “Prasada” obviously, and by doing so, we also obtain lot of good benefits. Ultimately we’re contributing to Bhagawan’s mission of sustaining the world with adequate food and water. Hence, this point shouldn’t be mistaken with the statements being made by some aethists floating around.

Moving on further thus, Bhagawan Krishna goes on to explain few other points with regards to the “Satva Guna”, “Rajo Guna” and “Tamo Guna”. He explains that if we’re able to enrich ourselves with the “Satva Guna”, we would always be able to stay alert at all times. We would be able to become “smart enough” to understand what goes on around us. We would have complete awareness. However, if we’re flying high on the “Rajo Guna”, we’d start feeling tired and stressed out. Ultimately we would get exhausted very soon, and our awareness to what is happening around us is going to decrease. In similar lines, if we’re scoring high on “Tamo Guna”, we’re going to keep sleeping forever! We’re only going to be in bed everytime with sheer laziness to do anything.

So for today, let us understand these points, as well as the important point on “Abhisheka” for Bhagawan. We shall wait till the next episode to take this discussion forward! Stay tuned! 🙂

Episode # 380 – We assume different physical forms to reach different “Lokhas” – Bhagawan Krishna to Uddhava!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed an important narrative of Bhagawan Krishna wherein He cautions us against seeking help from someone whom we shouldn’t approach. We’ve in fact been witnessing this discussion for the past couple of episodes and we’ve seen the nuances of approaching a wrong person for help. We’ve eventually seen that by doing so, we’re going to invite more trouble to ourselves, than the existing one. This is where we’ve to be extremely careful and the best strategy is to always keep a “back-up plan” for whatever we do in life. The ideal situation should be that, given such people around, it is better to remain self-sufficient and independent as much as possible – atleast for our basic living such as food, clothing, shelter and basic financial resources. We should always learn to live with whatever we have and within whatever is our personal financial framework. If we’re going beyond this boundary, this is where we’re going to get into problems and we ourselves create a situation wherein we’ve to seek someone’s help for our day-to-day survival. Of course, problems might surface in life, that might be totally out of our hands, but even then, we’ve to learn to remain self-sufficient as much as possible.

Moving on thus, Bhagawan Krishna now explains to Uddhava that He had devised two different paths to reach His divine abode, Vaikunta or “Moksha”. If an “Atman” traverses through the first way, it never comes back to this world again. Whereas, if the “Atman” has to traverse through the second way that I’ve devised, it is going to repeatedly take birth in this world, wash away all it’s “Karma” slowly, birth after birth and then finally would come and attain “Moksha” when the entire sack of “Karma” gets neutralized. The first way that Bhagawan Krishna is talking about is nothing but the “Archiraadi-Maarga”. This is the best possible path to reach “Vaikunta”. Bhagawan Krishna explains that if an “Atman” traverses this path, it never comes back to this world yet again. The second way is called as “Dhoomadhi Maarga”. In this way, one can reach the “Chandra-Lokha”, “Soorya-Lokha” and also Indra’s “Svarga Lokha” too. One can experience immense amount of joy and pleasures in all these “Lokhas”, but when that time is over, he / she would again be pushed back to this world, only to take a re-birth.

We might ask a question here – How’re we going to traverse to those “Lokhas” ever without a “Shareera” or a physical body? We’re fit and fine here with the present physical body that we’re having with us. We’re able to experience all sorts of pleasures, joy, etc. only with the help of our physical body. Whereas, if we’re going to the other “Lokhas” and even to the “Vaikunta”, how would we be able to experience all the pleasures, joy, etc. there, without a physical body? Aren’t we leaving our physical body here itself when we finish off this birth? The answer to this is very important – Just like how we’re having a physical body in this present birth in this “Manushya Lokha”, we would be obtaining a new physical body when we reach the other respective “Lokhas” after this birth gets over. Once we pass away from this world, our Atman takes the form of another physical body, enters into the “Svarga Lokha” if our “Punya Karma” is outweighing our “Paapa Karma”. Whereas, if our “Paapa Karma” is outweighing our “Punya Karma”, we’re again going to take another physical body and enter into the “Naraka Lokha”. The physical body that we take to enter the “Svarga Lokha”, “Chandra Lokha”, etc. are all tailor-made to enjoy the experiences and pleasures there. At the same time, the physical body that we would take to enter the “Naraka Lokha” will also be tailor-made for that experience – because, we should have the strength to withstand all the beatings, kicks, frying on the pan, etc., isn’t it? 🙂 Hence, we would be getting an even better physical body that is completely fit and fine to withstand all of it. Else, if we’ve to go with this same physical body to “Naraka Lokha”, how on earth are we going to withstand all the drubbings that we’re going to receive? Here itself, if someone slaps us hard on our cheeks, we immediately fall on the ground with just that one slap, isn’t it? J How are we going to withstand the continuous flow of drubbings that we would get there? 🙂

Hence, the point here is that, in order to traverse to each “Lokha”, we would be obtaining a new physical body, which is totally tailor-made to enjoy all the experiences – both good and bad that are pertaining to that “Lokha”. Even for “Vakunta”, this is the same procedure. Once the “Atman” crosses over the “Viraja” river, it assumes a new physical form and with that only we go into the “Vaikunta”. Once we reach there, it is only going to be Bhagawan everywhere around us, and also the souls that have already attained “Moksha”. It is a divine place and those who enter into that world, are never going to come back again to this world to take a birth!

So for today, let us understand this point clearly and we shall wait for the next episode to witness more accords of Bhagawan Krishna with regards to “Taamasa Bhakti”. He’s going to explain a very interesting narrative on this important point. Stay tuned for a detailed description! 🙂

Episode # 379 – Protocols for giving & obtaining “Dhaanam” – An important accord!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed yet another important point as narrated by Bhagawan Krishna to Uddhava – Here He explains that if we’ve to seek help from someone, we’ve to select the right person for that. In other words, we’ve to seek help only from those people who follow the path of “Dharma”. For instance, if it is going to be a financial help, we should seek that help from people who are earning money the legitimate way. If that’s not the case, then we’ve to be in for more trouble than the existing ones. Only since we’re in some sort of a trouble and an inability, we go out of our way and seek help from others. But if we’re choosing the wrong people for it, we’ve to understand that they are going to capitalize on our inability and “use” us in a wrong and an illegitimate way to get their personal agenda satisfied. Thus, we’ve to be extremely careful here. The point that Bhagawan Krishna is driving home here is not that we should refrain from seeking help of any sorts from others. It’s only that we’ve to be careful in choosing whom are we going to obtain that help from.

Adding on to this point further, if we look at the customs and traditions followed during our yesteryears, when kings give “Dhaanam” to people, they would firstly understand to whom are they giving it. Because, “Dhaanam” is something extremely sacred and pure, and it should go only to the right person, and not to someone who doesn’t deserve it. This is the first step. Once this point is cleared – For instance, if the king is going to give a “Dhaanam” to a spiritually realized “Maharishi”, there are certain steps that this “Maharishi” should follow, in order to receive the “Dhaanam” from the king who is giving it. As a part of the protocol, when the king gives the “Dhaanam”, he has to declare the following statements in front of the “Maharishi” and the entire courtroom – 1. There are no “Naastikas” (aethists) in this courtroom! 2. There is nobody in this courtroom who tries to challenge the Vedas and Upanishads. 3. There is nobody here who has earnt wealth in the wrong and illegitimate way. 4. There is nobody here who has hurt other living beings for earning money and wealth. Only if these four important points are pledged amidst the courtroom, the “Maharishi” would even take his hands forward to receive the “Dhaanam”.

Thus, we should understand from this accord that even if we’re receiving any sort of help or a “Dhaanam” from someone, we should make sure that we’re obtaining it from the right and the deserving person. Of course, in today’s times, nobody is going to follow any of these four protocols as listed above! We cannot expect that too in today’s scenario. However, atleast we shall do a “mental analysis” of the person to whom we’re approaching to receive something. We should do our homework to know and understand what kind of a person he / she is, what is their past background in giving things to someone, what is their mode of income, etc. Some people might be having a good source of legitimate income, but their mindset would be pathetic. For instance, they would give us something when we’re in need, but they would keep on reminding us upon it in the public for the rest of their lives, just to get petty name and fame for what they’ve done. They would proclaim thus, “Oh you know what? Five years before, if I wouldn’t have helped you with the money that I had offered, you wouldn’t have been able to come to this position in your life today! The entire credit for your success should be owed to me!” This is one kind of people who are vicious and opportunistic in nature. Or, some people would give us an assurance of help, but if we’re going to them to actually receive it, they would crib a thousand times and give what we ask for! For instance, people might crib within themselves or in front of us too thus, “Oh! Here he comes – A person without any sort of money! Why is he coming to me, out of all people in this world? Why can’t you go to someone else? What am I going to gain in life by giving this to him?”

Of course, I’ve just pointed out two such examples of people – But there might be so many people with so many categories of negative mindset when it comes to helping others. Some people might even give something to us with some sort of an expectation at a later stage. If we fail to live up to their expectation in the future for some reason, they would crib about us in the public thus, “Oh! This is why I was against helping people like you who totally forget my help that I did in the past!” We can thus witness many many types of people like this in this world. This is where, Bhagawan Krishna warns us that we should never receive any sort of help from such people. We should be able to judge these people clearly from their behavior, past experience, feedbacks from other people, sources of income, etc.

All of these points that we’re talking about now might sound a little scary for us by reading through, but the point here is that we’ve to be careful, not to fall into the trap of such people when we’re at a dire need. The best strategy is to always keep a “back-up plan” for whatever we do in life. The ideal situation should be that, given such people around, it is better to remain self-sufficient and independent as much as possible – atleast for our basic living such as food, clothing, shelter and basic financial resources. We should always learn to live with whatever we have and within whatever is our personal financial framework. If we’re going beyond this boundary, this is where we’re going to get into problems and we ourselves create a situation wherein we’ve to seek someone’s help for our day-to-day survival. Of course, problems might surface in life, that might be totally out of our hands, but even then, we’ve to learn to remain self-sufficient as much as possible.

So for today, let us understand this point with more clarity and let us wait till the next episode to witness the next point that Bhagawan Krishna is narrating! Stay tuned! 😊

Episode # 378 – We should seek help ONLY from people who follow the path of “Dharma”!!!

In the previous episode, we had witnessed the classification of “Bhakti” into the three categories – “Satvika Bhakti”, “Raajasa Bhakti” and “Taamasa Bhakti”. Satvika Bhakti is that wherein we’re able to surrender ourselves completely to Bhagawan in all aspects – By chanting our “Mantra” continuously, by singing in praise of Him unconditionally, etc. “Raajasa Bhakti” is something wherein we “act” as if we’re performing “Bhakti” and spiritual practices, for the sake of public attention and money. In other words, if we’re trying to “commercialize” Bhakti for name and fame, Bhagawan Krishna classifies this under the category of “Raajasa Bhakti”. Finally, if someone performs Bhakti just for the sake of doing it, it comes under “Taamasa Bhakti”. In other words, if we’re going to inculcate a “fear” factor for Bhagawan, and if we’re performing our spiritual practices with this fear in us, this comes under “Taamasa Bhakti”. Hence, from this accord again, we can infer which category of Bhakti we should fall into! This needs no more explanation!

Moving on with the next point, Bhagawan Krishna is going to talk about something that all of us need to understand very precisely here. This is applicable very much to today’s scenario. Bhagawan Krishna talks about the aspect of “borrowing”. Whom can we borrow from? From whom we should never even think of borrowing anything at any point in time? Bhagawan explains to Uddhava thus, “Oh Uddhava! If you’ve to borrow something from someone, you should first understand what kind of a person he / she is. If that person is a thief and is possessing some things that he / she had obtained through some illegitimate ways, you should never borrow anything from such a person. This is because, that person’s evil and wicked character would also come into you, along with whatever item you borrow!”

This is where we’ve to be extremely careful – We might be facing tough times in life at various points of time. However, just because we’re facing that tough time, can we go and seek help from whomsever we come across? If we’re going to ask for a help from an unethical person and a person whose only business is to earn money, name and fame through all illegitimate ways, we’re going to get into all sorts of trouble! Already, we might be in trouble and only because of that, we’re going to someone and seeking their help. On top of this, if we’re going to the wrong person seeking help, we’re only going to complicate things further for ourselves! First of all, as Bhagawan Krishna explains clearly, their wicked and evil characteristics would automatically come into us as we borrow something from them. Even other than this, if we’re going to do such a thing, we’ve to understand that the other person is going to try and take advantage of our inability and “use” us to do more illegal things! Ultimately, possibility is extremely high that we might get caught for all the wrong reasons, and that person might easily escape by putting us into the dock! This is where Bhagawan Krishna is sending out a loud and a clear warning to all of us! He’s thus explaning that if at all we’ve to seek someone’s help, we should approach only those who are Bhaagawathas and who walk the path of ethics and “Dharma”.

Such is with regards to our day-to-day affairs. So the point here is that, if we’re asking for some help to someone, we should always know whom are we asking that help to. As Bhagawan Krishna continues this discussion further, we’re going to witness how kings in those days gave “Dhaanam”. When kings donate something to someone, they would take a series of “pledges”, especially when the receivers are great “Maharishis”! We shall witness more about this in the next episode! Stay tuned! 😊