Doing Sadhana: Me or Krishna?
Who is performing our daily sadhana of chanting Hare Krishna japa, dhyana, Thakuraji puja, and other sevas? Is it me, or is Krishna Himself actually doing everything?
It’s Krishna Himself who is permitting and empowering us to do all the sevas we perform for His pleasure. The great cirana jiva Maharishi Sri Markendeya confirms this fact in the Srimad Bhagavatam (12.8.40):
“O Almighty Bhagavan Sri Vishnu! How can I possibly describe You? For it is You alone who move the prana or vital air within all living entities beginning with Sivaji and Brahmaji , which in turn impels the mind, senses and power of speech within everyone to act. But for those who worship You, You become their intimate loving friend.”
Tika Sri Jiva Goswamipada:
“The Brhad-aranyaka Upanisad (4.4.18) says, “Sri Vishnu is the life of the prana (vital air), the power of eyesight, the power of hearing, and He is the power of mental discrimination.” (Bk. San.144)
Tika Sri Visvanatha Cakravarti:
“Sri Vishnu, it is You who moves the life air, mind, senses and voice within all living entities. The Sruti says, ‘Bhagavan Sri Vishnu is the ear of one’s ear.’
“Kena Upanisad (1.2) says, ‘O Sri Vishnu! It is You alone who enable Your devotees to worship You by enlivening their minds and senses. And then like a friend You become controlled by the love of Your devotees. And most astonishingly, You feel indebted to Your loving servitors, and that You can never repay them for their worship. Thus You become controlled by their love. Just see the greatness of Your mercy!’”
To further prove that Krishna and not us is doing our daily sadhana, Sri Rupa Goswamipada says, “Krishna and His transcendental names cannot be grasped, experienced or perceived by the material senses (atah sri krishna namadi, na bhaved grahyam indriyaih) However, when a devotee develops a service attitude (sevon mukhe hi jihvadau), or the tendency to accept Sri Krishna’s nama and rupa, then Sri Krishna spontaneously manifests (svayam eva sphuraty adah) on the tongue and in the other senses of the devotee.” (Bhakti Rasamrita Sindhu 1.2.234; Padma Purana)
Tika Sri Jiva Goswamipada:
“By the mercy of Bhagavan Sri Krishna, not only humans can chant His transcendental divine names, but Sri Krishna even empowers and enables animals to chant Vishnu nama. ‘When Bharata Maharaja gave up his body of the deer, he smiled broadly saying, “All respects to Sri Narayana Hari.’” (Srimad Bhagavatam 5.14.45)
‘Thereafter, the elephant king Gajendra fixed his mind in his heart with perfect intelligence and did japa of a mantra memorized from his prior human birth as Raja Indradyumna. By the grace of Sri Krishna, he remembered this mantra.’” (Srimad Bhagavatam 8.3.1)
Summary: The above shastras prove that we are not chanting Hare Krishna japa. It is being done by Krishna who is empowering us to chant by appearing on our tongue. By His sweet will Krishna appears, stays for some time, and may also leave us whenever He chooses. Every step in bhakti and every devotional expression is Krishna’s mercy alone. We are not and never will be—THE DOER!
However, the good news is that Sri Krishna agrees to become a “bhava bandhu”, a loving friend, to anyone who serves Him. Krishna is our dearest friend (bandhu) because Krishna gives us bhakti, devotion to Him, and gives us the desire, power and ability to serve and love Him.
It is Sri Krishna alone who is giving us ideas to serve Him; moving our senses for His pleasure and making us speak His charming sweet glories. Devotees are happy puppets dancing on the strings of a sweet puppeteer named Shyama.
The conclusion is that independence is an illusion. Sri Krishna is doing everything, beginning with creating our initial attraction and interest in bhakti. Sri Krishna is maintaining our devotional practices as well. And it is Sri Krishna who is causing us to become weak, strong, stay or go away.
Our spiritual advancement, success and perfection in Krishna consciousness is completely in Krishna’s hands. We can’t plan or force bhakti or prema to appear within us. The fruit ripens in its own time. We have surrendered our lives to a benevolent, carefree, independent eternal master, Bhagavan Sri Krishna. And He can do whatever He deems best. Just remember: “All is His will, and His will ever be!”
(concept: madangopal blogspot)
Zero independence ki jai! Sri Krishna samarpanam ki jai! Jai Jai Sri Radhe!
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