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Archive for June 1st, 2013

Baba

This entire posting is composed of 2 parts:
(1) Posting: Devotee Story: Good or Bad Bhakta #1;
(2) Prabhat Samgiita #1756

== DEVOTEE STORY: GOOD OR BAD BHAKTA ==

~ Part 1 ~

Namaskar,
Devotees have a special characteristic that separates them from ordinary people. That is Baba’s explicit teaching.

Regardless of a bhakta’s behavior, whether he commits a blunder or a small mistake, we must not think that the devotee is therefore useless or worse than common folk. Because still that bhakta has the special quality of devotion. Baba Himself places tremendous importance on this.

Here below is one famous mythological story about a devotee from long ago. The inner meaning of the story lends itself well to life in Ananda Marga.

As we know, Baba vigorously defends the honor of even bad bhaktas after they were condemned by others for their faults. We have all heard of such incidents.

All these stories point in the direction that Parama Purusa holds a special place in His heart for all devotees, even bad ones who commit wrongs.

GAYA’SURA STORY: BAD DEVOTEE GOES ON CRUSADE

Baba tells the story of King Tripasur who was a great devotee of Lord Vishnu. After launching a crusade, King Tripasura met his untimely death.

His son, Gaya’sura inherited the throne and followed in his footsteps.

King Gaya’sura too was an ardent worshiper of Lord Vishnu. He prayed endlessly and finally achieved the gift of immortality, granted to him by his chosen Lord Visnu. King Gaya’sura promptly launched a heinous offensive wiping out innocent people in all lands. The wrath of Gaya’sura was terrible. And no one could kill him.

King Gayasura even attacked the devotees of Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu Himself came to defend them, but the Lord too was defeated.

Lord Vishu’s followers pleaded with Him to do something.

Lord Vishnu then asked a boon of King Gayasura. The King agreed. Lord Vishnu then asked that Gayasura be turned to stone.

Gaya’sura replied, “So be it”, but then made three pleas:

1) The Lord should put His feet in Gaya’sura’s heart;
2) All those with the Lord’s feet in their heart must be granted liberation;
3) If anyone with the Lord’s feet in their heart does not get liberation, then King Gaya’sura will again be granted life on earth.

Here Baba describes these boons in full:

“First, the Lord will seat Himself in the heart of the devotee without bothering Himself about the nature of that person, good, or bad. It is enough to be a devotee, in order to have the Lord inside. Second, all those who have the Lord’s feet in their hearts are bound to get liberation – liberation is a sure guarantee for them. Third, since Gaya’sura had been turned to stone by the Lord, and since He would again arise if anyone having the Lord inside failed to be liberated, the Lord would have to grant liberation to all such persons for all time to come.” (1)

By the above story – which Baba Himself has recounted on various occasions – we can understand that Parama Purusa places great value on devotion.

“This devotion is a heavenly attribution.” (2)

Even though King Gayasura was a ruthless warrior, due to his devotion he was able to keep the Lord’s feet in his heart. Such is the quality of devotion and such is the grace of the Lord.

Devotion then is enough to gain the favour of the Lord, despite what other bad qualities a bhakta might have.

TRUE TO FORM IN ANANDA MARGA

With all the groupism, difficulties, power mongering and so forth, it is very easy to think that certain people in Ananda Marga are very bad. But we should never harbor any ill will or hatred. Everyone is part of Parama Purusa’s family.

Some may have made mistakes and committed gross sins, yet still all are our brother and sisters. We must develop a relationship of love with them.

We must remember that all have come into Ananda Marga – and they have come for a reason. Some may have come to play the role of a hero; some may have come to play the part of a villain. Regardless, in the the near or distant past, they established an inner link with Parama Purusa, by His grace. They have a place for Him in their heart – so they have come once again to sacrifice in some way for Him – and they are going to be granted salvation.

So all in Ananda Marga are not just our brothers and sisters, but they are devotees of the Lord and that in itself has great meaning. They have a special connection with Him.

Regardless of what faults they do or what hell they create, we must not banish such persons from our minds or think ill of them. Rather we are to love them.

No doubt such persons may have to undergo rectification in the social sphere – they may have to stand before the court of justice – but their spiritual well-being is safe and secure, just as was the case with King Gaya’sura, Ravana, and so many other sinners. Parama Purusa has saved a place in His heart for even bad devotees.

So we must appreciate all who have come to do something for Baba, despite whatever shortcomings they may have. Their arrival onto the path of Ananda Marga has great meaning – that is enough to make one’s life successful.

We should not just think this way about others but about ourselves as well. Baba has graciously blessed us with the special gift of devotion.

THE STORY OF GAYASURA

(From the discourse, “The Lord’s Feet”, December 1971, Patna)

Tripurásura, the father of Gayásura, was a great devotee of Lord Viśńu [a mythological god]. Many devotees of Lord Shiva [a great yogi worshipped as the Lord] wanted him to become a devotee of Shiva instead. But how could Tripurasura go against his Iśt́a [beloved goal of life]? “Though I know that there is no difference between Viśńu and Shiva, for me everything is Lord Viśńu, for He is my Iśt́a. ”

But the devotees of Lord Shiva still put pressure on Tripurásura, in order to see him also become a devotee of Shiva. His conversion might have been possible if the worshippers of Shiva had made a logical appeal to Tripurásura’s understanding that there is actually no difference between Lord Shiva and Lord Viśńu, and that both are only the functional counterparts of Parama Puruśa. But under the pressure put on him by the devotees of Lord Shiva, Tripurásura initiated a crusade against all the devotees of Lord Shiva, until he finally came upon Shiva Himself. But however powerful Tripurásura was, how could he fight against Lord Shiva? He was defeated by Lord Shiva and met his death.

After the death of Tripurásura, his son, Gayásura, became the king. He, too, was a devotee of Lord Viśńu. He worshipped Him with all his heart and devotion, and finally succeeded in attaining a boon of immortality: not to be killed by man, demon or god, in earth, heaven or hell, by day, night, evening or morning. Endowed with such a great power, Gayásura went all over the world conquering people, torturing them and making their lives miserable. None were spared – not even the devotees of Viśńu or Shiva.

But as the saying goes, “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Gayásura, who had received his power from Lord Viśńu, thought to defeat the Lord Himself…Gayásura started thinking that the great power he possessed was actually his power. He finally challenged Lord Viśńu, and since Viśńu Himself had granted the boon, how could it fail? Viśńu was defeated by Gayásura. Gayásura bound Viśńu to a tree and then went all over the world with a very bloated ego.

When things had become intolerable for the people, they approached Lord Viśńu, still tied to the tree, and recounted their miseries, requesting Him to do something. Viśńu pleaded helplessness, as He Himself was in a precarious condition! Then the devotees reminded the Lord that He had given the boon of immortality to Gayásura in the physical realm only. The devotees urged Lord Viśńu to use His psychic and spiritual power to defeat Gayásura, and relieve the people of their miseries. Lord Viśńu assured them that He would do something in the matter.

When Gayásura returned to Lord Viśńu to offer his prayers, Viśńu said, “Gayásura! I once gave you what you asked, and you have defeated me. You should now give me a boon.” Gayásura readily agreed to it. Viśńu then asked that Gayásura be turned into stone. Gayásura had no alternative but to say, “So be it.”

Gradually Gayásura’s legs started turning to stone. When he was stone up to his waist, he said, “Wait! I have three conditions!” His first condition was that the Lord put His two feet in Gayásura’s heart. The Lord agreed to it, but asked the reason for such a condition.

Gayásura said, “So that people should know that the feet of the Lord are always in the heart of a devotee, good or bad.”

The second condition was that all those who had the Lord’s feet in their hearts would surely get liberation. The Lord agreed to this also.

The third and last condition of the almost petrified Gayásura was, “If even a single person having the Lord’s feet in his heart fails to get liberation, then this petrified Gayásura will again become a living Gayásura.” Lord Viśńu agreed to it. Very soon Gayásura was turned completely into stone.

This story, from one of the Puráńas [ancient scriptures] has the following three lessons for humanity. First, the Lord will seat Himself in the heart of the devotee without bothering Himself about the nature of that person, good, or bad. It is enough to be a devotee, in order to have the Lord inside. Second, all those who have the Lord’s feet in their hearts are bound to get liberation – liberation is a sure guarantee for them. Third, since Gayásura had been turned to stone by the Lord, and since He would again arise if anyone having the Lord inside failed to be liberated, the Lord would have to grant liberation to all such persons for all time to come; it is a matter of the Lord’s prestige!
(From the discourse, “The Lord’s Feet”, December 1971, Patna)

WORST TYPE OF SINNER

“Now even if a man is that type of sinner whom other sinners may take as a bad man, of whom even sinners may say that he is a bad man – for such a sinner, the worst type of sinner, the future is not dark. The future in his case also is very bright, if he takes shelter in the divine lap of the Supreme Father.” (3)

Namaskar,
in Him,
Deveshvara

REFERENCES1. ‘The Lord’s Feet’
2. 1 June 1986 DMC
3. Ananda Vacanamrtam – 34, Be Free From All Complexes

******** Prabhat Samgiita #1756

“A’mi toma’r pathei cali go a’r tava sure ga’n ga’i…” (PS 1756)

Purport:

O’ Parama Purusa, by Your grace I move only on Your path: I sing in Your tune and dance to Your rhythm. My whole existence is moving in Your divine flow – ensconced in Your sweet bliss. O’ my Dearmost, You are the most attractive One. I think and ideate only on You and I meditate only on Your glory. O’ my Lord, 24hrs a day I am looking towards You; I want only You. Only You are my Goal; only You are my Desideratum. You are the shining star of my life.

O’ Parama Purusa Baba, we are so close. We are tied up in a bond of love. You are the ray of hope & happiness in my life. I am like the dark evening of the rainy season – my life is full of problems and difficulties; and You are like the soft night-queen flower (rajaniigandha’ [1]) – You are the Personification of all that is sweet. By Your fragrant touch, my whole life becomes fragrant. By Your grace my life is saturated with Your heavenly aroma – my existence is saturated with Your love.

O’ Divine Entity Baba, I am jiiva and You are Shiva. I am wrought with imperfections and defects and You are blemishless and pure. I am like the winter sky that is enveloped by the fog. My life is filled with problems. Baba, You are like the crimson effulgence of the morning’s new dawn. With the brilliance of Your presence all my problems disappear. You bring charm and bliss into my life. You make everything beautiful. O’ Parama Purusa, without You my life is meaningless – unbearable. Baba, by dyeing my mind in Your color, my whole existence rushes towards Your divine land – towards You.

Baba, because of Your grace-compassion, I am marching only towards You. O my Lord, You have done everything for me…

NOTE FOR PRABHAT SAMGIITA #1756:

[1] Rajaniigandha’: (Night Queen Flower) This is one of the most fragrant and aromatic flowers; it emanates a delicious, sweet smell all around for miles and miles. The wonderful scent of the rajaniigandha’ makes any environment charming. For this reason in the above song the sadhaka is saying that Parama Purusa is like the rajaniigandha – because He emanates unending sweetness all around. In contrast, the sadhaka compares himself to the suffocating, humid evening in the rainy season. Because that humid evening has so many negative characteristics such as heavy air and the onslaught of buzzing mosquitos and pestering insects. Thus the torturous humid evening represents the sadhaka’s problem-filled life. But when the sweet aroma rajaniigandha’ comes in contact with the sticky, humid evening, then everything becomes sweet and charming. Then that humid evening gets transformed into something wonderful. Similarly even though a sadhaka’s life might be filled with countless problems and obstacles, but with the divine arrival of Parama Purusa, everything becomes charming and blissful. All of one’s problems immediately disappear– vanish, because of His sweet presence. That is why in the above song the sadhaka compares Baba with the rajaniigandha’ flower.

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