(Kadamba Kanana Swami, Berlin 2011) In the earlier days of Iskcon austerity was a big thing, it was considered spiritual, the more austere the more spiritual: the colder the water the … more
Chowpatty Devotee talks about the fact that our heart should be clean, but despite doing everything i.e rounds and rising early still there is hypocrisy in the heart that one doesn’t want to expose this truth to others because of the desire to maintain a nice image of one’s self. The question then the devotee asks is:
‘How can we be thoroughly open and say in front of everyone ‘This is what I am’ ?’
(Kadamba Kanana Swami 02/2010):
There are many factors that block us from this kind of honesty. One is our pride, our false pride – What will people think? What will they say? That is one fear. Another fear comes also that in this age it is difficult to trust anyone. Love yes, but trust…you know what I’m saying! Trust someone is not easy.
‘Trust? We love you so much, but trust?!’
Trust is difficult in this age because who can you trust? …
OPEN UP HIS HEART
So first of all, the senior devotees , they have to create an atmosphere of being trustworthy, they have to be trustworthy, they have to be kind, they have to be supportive, so that at least not in front of everyone, at least in confidence to a senior devotee someone can open up his heart. If not here in front of the microphone, in front of everyone, then at least in front of some senior Vaishnava, that may be easier.
APPRECIATIVE LIKE KRISHNA
So the seniors, must be exemplary, trustworthy and kind. The seniors, is not only what they follow, but the seniors: it is important who they are. They must be genuinely kind. They must be genuinely supportive and appreciative – like Krishna, of every little bit of service. So that we need.
PRAY: PLEASE HELP ME
Alright, but what if we are one these seniors, and our heart is still not pure?
Then we pray to Krishna:
‘Dear Krishna, here I am, you know me better than I know myself, inspite of everything I have done, i have not whole heartedly applied myself. Somehow or other my Lord, without your help, I can not even do it.
Please help me to become a pure devotee. Please help.’
TURNING TO KRISHNA AND THE VAISHNAVAS
In this way, a devotee is always praying for the help of the Lord and is always turning to Krishna for help and turning to the Vaishnavas for help, to the senior Vaishnavas for help and in that way, little by little by the help of Krishna and the Vaishnavas – it can happen.
SWEET MERCY AND SALTY MERCY
Ofcourse, Krishna has two ways of helping, one is he gives some sweet mercy and the other one is the salty mercy! Ha ha ! Salty mercy, we do not want, but we want the sweet mercy ..huh ! (Sanskirt) –
Krishna says sometimes I take things away, if I see that my devotee is just so attached, then sometimes takes things away.
Sometimes …not always! The proof is Sudama – Sudama came poor and in the end he became rich,…so don’t be afraid of Krishna! Sometimes he takes away.
TIME IS MOVING ALONG BUT ARE WE PURE?
But we must go to Krishna and ask Him for help – then imagine, you whole life goes by, we see each other sometimes, years gone by, it’s been along time since I was here – And we have become older, your hair is more ‘suhfed’ , yes there is more white, me too – I didn’t lead the kirtan today, like i did in previous years, because I needed some rest, what to do? Doctor’s orders! Such is life in old age. So time is moving along and have we really become pure?
HOPE AGAINST HOPE
We know, we know the truth, and Krishna knows even better, so what to do. Imagine what will happen at the end of our life, still not pure! Then we have only one thing, only one thing left…..Hope against Hope!
Hope against hope that in spite of our lack of qualification that still we get the mercy of the Lord and we are praying for it:
‘Krishna, please overlook my faults and please please please give me the mercy – Please over look my faults’ – and somehow or other we endeavor, at least by some service to satisy Krishna:
GO BACK TO GODHEAD
‘Maybe I have so many faults, I do, but at least let me with all my faults, do some ‘seva’ and hopefully, hopefully Krishna will give me the mercy at the end of this life’
Prabhupada said: ‘Sixteen rounds , four regulative principles’
‘Let me at least do all that’’
Then ‘I guarantee it, I guarantee it, I guarantee it: You will go back to Godhead’
Then on the way back to Godhead the qualities will be adjusted. So there is hope! There is hope.
DID HE PASS OR FAIL?
In the spiritual world they wouldn’t let you in, they wouldn’t let me in with our present qualities, we know ourselves very well, they wouldn’t let us in the way we are, so some adjustment would follow. Because you know at the end of life our case will be judged, and they look and it and they go like:
‘Huh, this one, oh huh, what to do, a problem case, he didn’t do very well’
e.g: Some say ‘Well let him pass, maybe he was nervous during the exam’
Others say: ‘Nahh it will be better, if he does it one more time, one more time, one more life’
But then in the middle of this discussion where some say let him pass and others say no no better he fails, in the middle of this, someone will say:
‘No no but this one is one of Prabhupada’s party’
‘Oh, Prabhupada’s party……… oh let him go!’
TIP THE BALANCE
So understand that we are not just being judged on our performance –
Prabhupada has prayed for us, he has prayed that all these people get delivered, so how can Krishna deny – the Acharyas have prayed for us – our Guru is praying for us, the service of our Spiritual Master puts weight in the scale at the time of our departure, and that may just tip the balance!
(Kadamba Kanana Swami 02/2010)