|Shree Morari Bapu|
Naath sakal saadhan main heena
Kinhi kripa jaani jan deena
So kachhu dev na mohi nihora
Nij pan raakheo jan man chora
I have already narrated to you that Sri Ram arrived at the ashram (hermitage) of Sharbhang.
Aaye prabhu jahan muni Sharbhanga
Sunder anuj Janaki sanga
The above means that Sri Ram arrived at the hermitage of Sharbhang, along with his brother and Janaki (the daughter of King Janak ie Seetaji )
Dekhi Ram mukh pankaj
Munivar lochan bhrang
Saadar paan karat ati
Dhanya janam Sharbhang
Tulsidasji exclaims: ” Dhanya janam Sharbhang ” which means that Sharbhangji’s life is blessed .(As he is fortunate enough to entertain such divine guests) “Dekhi Ram mukh pankaj” which means that Sharbhangji beheld the countenance of Sri Ram. How is it that Sharbhangji is bold enough to glance at the eyes (“lochan bhrang“) of Sri Ram ?— Because he feels fearless ! A pilgrim who walks on the path of Nisaadhanta or Sharanaagati becomes fearless because his source of fear which is his mind, is stolen by the Lord. Love makes one daring, and one gazes at the Lord’s face and looks into His beautiful eyes.
Naath sakal saadhan main heena. When all other means fail for the devotee to achieve the Lord , he finds two alternatives which become his strength. They are :
- To gaze towards his object of desire.
- To cry
A helpless child will imploringly look at his mother to get something that he yearns for, and if he is not able to achieve it, –he cries! — So does the Spiritual pilgrim!
Chitvat panth raheo din raati. A point to consider is that it has not been promised how long the Spiritual pilgrim has to wait…….Dear Ram’s exile to the forest was for 14 years…….The Spiritual traveler’s wait lasts for lifetimes!
The greatness of the union and the separation of the Gopis of Vraj
The Gopis of Vraj knew how to wait!…..They did not know the road through which Krishna had come to Vraj (as a baby) as it was around midnight and they were asleep. But they did know the road through which Krishna had left Vraj with Akroorji.
A poet describing the longing for Krishna of the people of Vraj has written “they not only gazed at the road that would reunite their Lord with them , but they actually spread their eyes on the path ,so that when the Lord would finally come, they would not overlook or miss Him.”
While Krishna was with the Gopis, the latter would be immersed in their love for Him…..It would never occur to them that He is “Brahm” (God) and therefore omnipresent. The above realization , the Gopis achieved only when they were separated from Him. In the famous” Gopi Geet” they sing to Him , ” Not only are you the child of Nandbaba but you are the very essence of the whole universe.” So separation is as important as union in the Spiritual path. Being together is like the coolness of the moon that lulls you to sleep, whereas the separation feels like the heat of the sun, that keeps you awake to pine, cry and wait for the Beloved. The Gopis cry to Udho (Krishna’s friend) ” Ever since Krishna has been separated from us , we have had only the “Rainy season” in Vraj…….the “rain” is the tears that constantly flow from our eyes as we pine for Him.”
As I told you before , that for those for whom all means fail to achieve the Lord —they are left with two strengths:–To wait…and to cry…that as we have seen is what the Gopis and the inmates of Vraj did.
According to Sri Vallabh, devotees are of three kinds :
These people study and read the Scriptures. They, however, have to go through a certain process before they achieve their goal and this process takes its own time. Chaitanya Mahaprabhuji does not attach much value to the above people if they possess no devotion, and do not have much love for the name of the Lord. Saraswati is the Goddess of Learning and Knowledge. She was responsible for inspiring the maid Manthara to influence Kaikeyi to insist on Sri Ram going to the forest. When Bharatji went to the forest to urge Sri Ram to return, he was ready to bathe in the Ganga River and the Yamuna , but he would not do so in Prayag where the River Saraswati flowed.
Bharatji said: “If there is only learning and Knowledge here and no ‘Ram naam’ or ‘Krishna naam’ (Devotional chanting of the Lord’s name) then I will not dive into these waters.
Someone asked Mahaprabhuji what happens when you take the Lord’s name. The latter answered “It cleans the mirror of your mind” The Lord has an understanding with His devotees: He will sweep your heart until it is spotless if you will keep His temple clean. If the devotee wears Him a garland, the Lord will keep him in his heart.
Mahaprabhuji has interpreted the Shrimad Bhagvad. Each word is priceless. I would request you to have an open mind before you interpret Mahaprabhuji’s teachings. A lady who is proficient in cooking knows which spice to use for which recipe; Similarly the right Master knows which teaching is appropriate for which disciple.
As I was saying, certain knowledgeable people get offended if devotion is praised. Yet they forget that knowledge (gyan) is the son of devotion (bhakti) (The above is stated in the Srimad Bhagvad) I feel that every son should be happy whenever he hears his mother praised.
The Kusaadhan kind :
These are the kind of devotees who have thought of the Lord, but in a negative way. The important point to note is that they have achieved the Lord. Kamsa was obsessed with Krishna and thought of Him all the time. So did Shishupal, with anger and enmity. The above type of people reach the Lord , and are better than those who do not think of Him at all.
God had two gatekeepers called Jay and Vijay. They stopped Sanatkumar from entering the Lord’s chambers. Sanatkumar cursed them and then burst into tears. When the Lord asked him the reason why he was crying, he answered: “My intrinsic nature is not to mean harm to anyone, so why have I gone against my temperament and cursed the door-keepers to take birth on earth as human beings ,who will be opposing you ?”
The Lord answered “You have acted according to my will”
Sanatkumar then expressed his desire to come to earth as Prahlad (a great devotee) when one of the door-keepers would incarnate as Hiranyakashipu . The Lord agreed.
Through the narrations in the Scriptures , one has always noted that the Lord has been under the spell of His devotees. He who is so great as to command the Universe is found bound by the string of Mother Yashoda.! He who makes the world spin is found dancing to the tune and clapping of hands of His beloved gopis! Tulsidasji says, “I am as good as a counterfeit coin and yet I have value because I chant the Lord’s name!” One who thinks himself unworthy and surrenders to the Lord, is elevated by Him to dizzy heights!
You can try and tie the Lord unto you. You must put in the efforts. But remember that it will only be possible with the Lord’s grace, if He so desires. When Yashodaji tried to tie baby Krishna, she got exhausted trying,.She was able to finally succeed only when Krishna allowed Himself to be bound. The Lord’s attributes are such that He cannot be constrained.
In the dispute that took place between the two groups that argued whether the Lord can be bound or not; ‘Mercy’ said that the Lord can be bound by love, however great His attributes may be as “Hari karat das par priti‘” which means that the Lord loves His disciples.
The susaadhan kind of devotees reach the Lord ‘der se’ (late)
The kusaadhan kind achieve the Lord ‘maar se’ (overpowered and beaten)
The nisaadhan kind achieve the Lord ‘pyar se’ (with love)
For the Nisaadhan type of devotees, there is no delay and no fear of being punished as theirs is the Royal Highway. When Sudama went to meet Krishna , he was not made to wait at the door, nor was he over powered or punished, since he was a nisaadhan type of devotee. As a matter of fact Krishna came running to meet him at the door. But remember that being a nisaadhan devotee does not mean that you do nothing! You must perform but with the idea that the fruits that will come, when they come, will be because of the Grace of the Lord.
Loving the Lord (Bhakti) is the goal in itself, not the means.
Tulsidasji claims:” All other means to achieve the Lord are flowers, Bhakti (devotion) is the fruit, and it holds the seed within itself to blossom furthermore. Three types of devotees :
The first type are those who pray for material or personal benefit.
The second type accumulate good deeds in desire for Heaven.
The third type pray to the Lord for the Lord.
The above are the ideal type of devotee, according to Sri Vallabh. Tulsidasji claims:
Ehi kali kaal na saadhan dooja,
Jog jagya jap tap vrat puja.
Which means that, during the Iron age difficult penances and rituals will not be possible, only chanting the Lord’s name and keeping His remembrance in your heart will enable you to achieve Him.
The Lord Himself has stated in the Srimad Bhagvad ” No yoga, no studying the Scriptures , no penance, no pilgrimage centre, no renunciation, can achieve Me”. Then who can achieve the Lord?
Kaam aadi mad dambh na jaake
Taat nirantar bas muni taake
Which means that the Lord belongs to one who has no desire, greed nor hypocrisy.
How does one achieve the above qualities? By keeping company of those personalities who will be conducive to one becoming detached from the world. Whatever company you keep will determine your character. Worldly or Spiritual company will mould your disposition accordingly.
There are some people who feel so attracted and attached to the Lord, that they claim that the Lord belongs only to them! Fine! As long as they do not envy nor criticize any other devotee. Mira sings: “Mere to Giridhar Gopal, doosra na koi“. Which means: “For me there is only Krishna and no one else” or it could also mean “I see no one in the world but Krishna” and she might also be saying “Whoever I see in the world, seems Krishna to me.”
The Lord belongs to everyone ,and resides in everyone. When you believe the above tenet to be true, then it follows that God’s wish should become your wish.
In the temple of Shrinaathji ,if an ornament falls while they are wearing it for the Lord, – it is believed that He does not want to wear it for that day. When I was doing a discourse at Shrinaathji, I expressed the desire to the temple priest to do darshan (see) the Lord before proceeding for my lecture. The priest said “It is not in my hands when the Lord wants to be ready. Sometimes he takes time to eat and sometimes to dress.” What I am trying to say is that the Lord is the ultimate authority in every circumstance, so there is no need to criticize or envy another devotee.
Devotees, like children from the same parents may have different likes and dislikes, but they are equally loved by their mother and father (God). Hanumanji tells Vibhishan that if the latter takes him to meet Mother Seeta, he would introduce him to Father (Sri Ram). Vibhishana was an Asura (belonging to a demon race ) and the brother of Ravana; yet Hanumanji called him a brother, and expressed his desire to see mother Seeta.
Tab Hanumant kahau sun bhraata
dekhi chahau Janaki mata
The chief of the army of Sri Ram was Sugreeva. He complained to Sri Ram when the latter befriended Vibhishan. However Hanumanji intervened, and Vibhishan was accepted. In life also, one requires a mediator (a Sadguru) who will put in a good word for us and take us to the Lord’s portal.
Having accepted Vibhishan, Sri Ram continued to look around to see whether Ravana had also come, as he was ready to accept him as well. The above proves that even a sinner (Ravana) if he befriends a saint (Vibhishana) and takes to the Lord’s path, he is accepted by the Lord.
Sri Ram then asked Hanumanji , why he had put in a good word for Vibhishan. Hanumanji answered: “There are various reasons. Firstly even though Vibhishan lived in the city of demons, he continued to take the Lord’s name. Secondly I saw a Tulsi plant in his patio. Thirdly when he woke up the first word that emerged from his lips was ‘Ram.’ Fourthly , it was with his help that I got to see Mother Seeta. When Ravana gave the order to have me killed, Vibhishan said: ‘Niti virodh na maarei doota‘ ( which means that it is against the law to have a messenger killed). Also whenever Seetaji would be depressed while captive, it would be Vibhishan’s wife and daughter who would go to console her”
Vibhishan left his brother Ravan because the latter was on the wrong path. Leaving the company of such people is condoned by the Scriptures. As a matter of fact:
Ravan jabahi Vibhishan tyaaga
Bhayau bibhav binu tabahi abhaaga
Which means : Ravana’s destiny took a turn for the worse , since the moment Vibhishan left him. What I am trying to say is that there is no need to judge and criticize others. The Lord takes the form and character according to the liking of the devotees.
Krishna while doing the ‘Raaslila” (The Mystic dance) was seen dancing with each gopi at the same time, which means that every gopi had Krishna exclusively for herself , dancing to her own rhythm.
During the Ramavtaar Sri Ram enacts the role of son, brother and king to perfection to fulfill the desire of mother, brother and kingdom respectively.
Therefore do not criticize anyone else’s mode of worship as man was not given the right to judge.
When you commit a bad act (karma), you may deceive yourself into believing that you have not; but if your inner conscience is awake, you will know the truth. Remember that ‘sin’ is the fruit, not the means; which means e.g.: you steal, that becomes your act (karma). the fruit of that act will be a sin. How does one unburden oneself of all the sins one has accumulated? By chanting the name of Sri Ram or Sri Krishna! The latter has two benefits. It saves he who chants and he who hears.
Also, continue to look yearningly at the path from which the Lord will come and one day you are sure to achieve Him. Even if a beggar continues to knock at the same door everyday , he will eventually get what he is asking for. Go like a beggar to the Scriptures and they will unravel their mysteries to you. Continue reading even when you do not understand, and one day you will receive their grace. When a car stops at a junction and beggars surround you imploring you to give them something, they may not succeed in getting what they want, but they always manage to receive your attention. Why then knock at anyone else’s door but the Lord’s, when constant imploring can at least get you the attention of the King of Kings?
Sometimes you may think “I have committed so many misdeeds in my life” and you may feel ashamed to go to the Lord’s portal. I am going to tell you a story: A King, once saw a beggar in a feeble and miserable condition and offered him some food. The royal cook said that the food was consumed and the kitchen was closed. Since it was the king’s desire to feed the poor man, the cook was made to prepare something. However he did so in a careless manner . When the king expressed his displeasure, the cook retorted, “But it is only for a beggar! “The king said, “Since I, a king is serving it to him, the food has to be fit for a king’s guest’s consumption.”.
The Lord also thinks :”This man may be a sinner, but I possess the title of being ‘Merciful’ so I have to forgive those who seek forgiveness at my door, and give them liberation and joy.”
Naath sakal saadhan main heena
Kinhi kripa jaani jan dina
So kachhu dev na mohi nihora
Nij pan rakheo jan man chora
Sharbhang told the Lord that if He were not to claim him as His own, He would be criticized, as then He would not be living up to His title of being ‘Merciful’ Note how Sharbhang is not afraid of talking to the Lord in this manner. The above is the language of love. Sharbhang claims that his heart is already stolen by the Lord. Now he belongs to Him totally, and as such the Lord is completely responsible for him now.
Dear brothers and sisters, do all your worldly and spiritual duties, but in your heart of hearts know, that only the grace of God will make you His (Nisaadhanta). Stare yearningly at the path that will unite the lord to you……and wait…..and cry…..like the Gopis of Vraj did. Chitvat panth raheo din raati. God knows how many nights Sharbhang kept awake waiting for Sri Ram! Ab Prabhu dekhi juraani chhaati. Which means : ‘I only feel at peace when I look upon the Lord”. Devotees while waiting for the Lord sing to Him: Daras bin dookhan laage nain. Which means “Our eyes hurt when they do not look upon You”
When Krishna left Vraj with Akroorji , the gopis looked at Krishna, then looked at the chariot. When they could not see the chariot any longer, they were left with no strength to hold on to the branch of the tree any longer and they fell to the ground in grief.
Much later when Udhavji came to visit Vraj, the gopis looked at him hungrily. They felt “Krishna’s friend has come ,but why should we show him that we care.” and they said to Udhavji, “Why should we yearn for Krishna when He does not care?!”
When Udhav asked the gopis why they were unblinkingly looking at him, the gopis could not hide their true feelings any longer, they said, “We are not watching you, we are gazing at your eyes which have been lucky enough to have recently looked upon our Krishna! Udhav we see Krishna in your eyes!”
Jit dekhoon tit Sham-mayi hai. Which means: “Wherever we look we see Krishna!”
Mahaprabhuji has spoken wisely when he said that however many means you may employ to achieve the Lord – unless you feel helpless about your efforts, the Lord’s Grace does not descend.
Say with me :
Sri Ramchandra Bhagwan ki jay
Glory be unto Sri Ram!
Nisaadhanta – Preface
Nisaadhanta – First Discourse
Nisaadhanta – Second Discourse
Nisaadhanta – Third Discourse
Nisaadhanta – Fourth Discourse
Nisaadhanta – Fifth Discourse
Nisaadhanta – Sixth Discourse
Nisaadhanta – Seventh Discourse
Nisaadhanta – Eighth Discourse
Nisaadhanta – Ninth Discourse