God is so kind that He allows us to conceive Him in any form we wish – as a young child, a youth or even as an old man. The Vedas say that God is a child, an old man, a woman, a man – imagine Him in any form that is pleasing to you. Dress Him in any way you like. Engage in any pastime with Him that you wish. God will accept whatever you lovingly imagine. Shri Krishna was offered an opulent feast by Duryodhana, but preferred to eat the banana peel lovingly offered by Vidura’s wife. He ate the fruit that had been tasted by Shabari because it was offered with love.
A devotee says, “I have no money. My Lord, how will I feed You halva and puris?” God replies, “Give me simple dry bread. You eat that, don’t you?” “Yes, my Lord, but today there is no bread!” “It doesn’t matter. Just give Me water.” “But my Lord, the tap is turned off.” God says, “Then just offer me a leaf.” “But my Lord, how will I pick a leaf? My hand is sprained.” God says, “Then just mentally serve Me.” Everyone has a mind. No one can say that someone took his mind. Every living being has a mind. So God says, “Just surrender your mind to Me, and act with your body in the world.” This is called karma yoga. This is a very simple and straightforward philosophy in our Hindu dharma. There is no need to apply your intellect to this.
What we do instead is physically act as if we are doing devotion and our minds are attached in the world. God is saying to reverse this. You are driving your car towards Allahabad, but you have to go to Lucknow. So just turn around. Divert your car in the other direction. There’s nothing more you have to change. For example, you hope for happiness from your mother, father, spouse and children. But instead you were deceived. Why? “They are a beggar like me! They also want happiness from me.” A blind person says to someone, “Listen, I can’t see. Can you take me to Kripalu Ji’s ashram?” He is actually speaking to another blind person. That person thinks, “He can’t see that I am also blind!” But he says anyway, “Come on, take my hand.” They confidently set off and soon fall into a ditch. This is our condition, yet we insist on calling ourselves intelligent. If someone suggests we are slightly ignorant, we retort, “What did you say?!” “Well, are you omniscient?” “Oh no! Only God is all-knowing!” Then why are you taking offence at being called ignorant?
To be continued . . .
An English translation of a discourse delivered in Hindi by:
Jagadguru Shri Kripalu Ji Maharaj
14 August 2010
Bhakti Dham, Mangarh
© Radha Govind Samiti
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