Monday, February 24, 2014

Why to pray to God only for worldly things?

A friend of mine has a beautiful daughter who is very young. By her innocent antics, she entertains all. Once she went in front of the picture of Radha and Krishna and reverentially folded her hands in front of the Lord. She stood there for few minutes. All of us were pleasantly amused, her mother was very excited. She embraced the little child and then said something which was although not shocking but saddening. Taking the little girl on the lap, she instructed her in a serious tone, “Always pray to Krishna so that He makes you an IAS officer. Do not pray to him for any other thing. This should be the only prayer throughout your life till you achieve your coveted goal.”

Such demands from God are not uncommon. People mostly knock at the doors of God with their wish list and ask him to fulfil all of them. It’s just like the way we place our order to a waiter in a restaurant.  As the waiter is obliged to bring everything which we had asked him for, similarly we want that God should also be on his toes to fulfil all our desires. And the same thing we teach to the younger generation.  

Why should we pray to God for material positions and possessions? And whenever we stand in front of God then why should we always ask for something from him.  Why don’t we go in front of him to simply share our feelings with him, to express our love, to thank him for all the beautiful things he has given to us? God being our maintainer and sustainer takes care of all our basic necessities. Before a child is born, he arranges milk for the child. He gives us food, air, oxygen to breathe, water and everything which is required in our life. It is other thing that we humans never cared for these invaluable gifts and exploited the natural resources.  God always takes care of all our needs.

How would a father or a mother feel, if their child always comes to him only to ask for something. Give me money, buy me a bike, a laptop, an iPad, a fancy mobile, a trendy dress etc. And once the demand is fulfilled he turns his back towards his parents. But if the demands aren’t met then the child starts accusing the parents for callousness. How much pain it would cause to the caring mother and father? But if the child simply embraces them with love then how much joy the parents would experience.

Do we ever think that how God, our father, would be feeling when we go in front of him with our demand list. Holy books and holy men have taught us what to ask and what not to ask from God. In Sistastakam prayer, Lord Chaitanya teaches us how to pray to God: “O almighty Lord, I have no desire to accumulate wealth, nor do I desire beautiful women, nor do I want any number of followers. I only want your causeless devotional service birth after birth.”   This is how we should approach God – not for any worldly things but to selflessly serve and offer our love to him.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Burn the seed of lust

A seed is tiny in size but if watered regularly it grows into a gigantic tree. Similarly, any desire in our mind initially may appear to be extremely small however if we keep on nurturing that tiny little desire then slowly it becomes extremely big.  And that specific desire or thought starts affecting our daily life. How it happens? Suppose that we see an obscene picture in a newspaper or on a billboard (these are anyway plenty available these days), our mind like a blotting paper captures that image and stores it. Now if we start thinking about that image constantly and start enjoying it then gradually we would start getting absorbed in it. Soon 24hrs a day we would remain obsessed with that thought. Since, it is impossible to get the actual person of the picture, so people who contemplate on such thoughts start devising other means to satisfy their obsession.  They soon get hooked to pornographic magazine or movies or start searching stealthily in the outside world to fulfill their nasty lusty desires. Lust is extremely dangerous, it ruins our life. Bhagavad Gita explains that it is the gateway to hell and every sane man should guard themselves against it. “There are three gates leading to this hell—lust, anger and greed. Every sane man should give these up, for they lead to the degradation of the soul.” Bhagavad Gita 16.21. Turn the pages of any newspapers or peep into any history books, there would be plenty of stories of crimes, suicides and even war due to lust. The two men who raped a 5 year old small girl in Delhi told to the police that it was pornography which they were watching on their mobile which instigated them to abduct the innocent child and rape her.  Addiction to lust defeats us, humiliates us and finishes us. Lust should be nipped in the bud. So as soon as any lusty thought crops in our mind then we should immediately burn that seed before it poisons our life. One of the best ways to fight the disease of lust is by chanting the name of God like the Hare Krishna Mahamantra. Chanting strengthens our will power and purifies our consciousness which helps us to immunize ourselves against lust.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Vasant Panchami – day to offer our love to Radha and Krishna

Today is Vasant Panchami, the first day of spring. Spring is considered to be the best of all the seasons. Different varieties of colorful flowers of various shapes and sizes swarm the earth in this season. The multicolored surrounding exudes sweet fragrance calling people to enjoy the beauty of God’s beautiful creation. The day becomes more beautiful when devotees offer gorgeous garlands prepared by these flowers to Radha and Krishna and bathe them with flower petals and colorful leaves.  The sweetness of the ambience rises at its peak when everyone melodiously sings to glorify the Lord. This is the best way to celebrate Vasant Panchami. The divine couple, our original and eternal Supreme Father and Mother, is most beautiful and loving and when we express our gratitude towards them by giving them the best of this world then they became extremely happy and we too as his parts and parcels feel complete satisfaction and deep bliss.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Starve the senses to enjoy it

Our senses if untrained and uncontrolled behave like a serpent ever ready to bite us. We mostly suffer because we fail to control our senses but remain controlled by it. For e.g. if one does not control ones speech and is loudmouthed then sooner or later one will face the music. Or else, if a person always remains absorbed in satisfying ones taste buds then from morning to night one will be busy looking for palatable foodstuffs.  The problem is that the more we walk the extra mile to act as per the dictum of our senses, our senses becomes more demanding. Soon we become slaves of our senses and start dancing to its tune. Senses are just like serpents; the more we feed milk to a snake the more it becomes poisonous, similarly the more we try to appease the senses the more violent it becomes. Bhagavad Gita too warns the danger of being controlled by the senses, “As a strong wind sweeps away a boat on the water, even one of the roaming senses on which the mind focuses can carry away a man's intelligence.” (Bhagavad Gita 2.67)
So if we want peace in our life then we should start saying NO to our senses. Initially like a mad dog it will go berserk. But if we keep on starving it then slowly it will emaciate and we can then easily imprison them. Our senses will then become ours and instead of us being under its subjugation we can dictate terms to them. Once we become the master of our senses then our senses will become our best friend and would never trouble us.