8th March, 2015. Gurgaon
Since last many days I am trying to analyse why I feel hollow from inside as if some part of me as has gone missing. And I have developed a strange longing for Krishna and hearing about Krishna, I try my best to suppress it and hide it but it won’t go. I shared with Shyamsundar Prabhu some days back that I feel that a strange churning is happening inside my heart but the churning feels like churning of a very viscous fluid (like a very thick honey) which is difficult to churn. So it seems that the process is on but the motor of this mixer (my spiritual attachment) is no match for the thick fluid ( my material attachments mixed with offenses) it is trying to churn!
Last year I asked Guru Maharaj “How to develop the feeling of separation from Krishna as I feel Krishna is so close to me as super soul”. Guru Maharaj’s replied surprised to say the least ‘because there is no love and love can’t be artificially produced’. (today I feel ashamed to have asked such a question). At that time I wondered that instead of patting me on my back that somehow I feel “closer” to Krishna and Guru Maharaj has replied that I have no love for Krishna! Isn’t it love which has produced my so called closeness? I kept quite as I know my state is mostly sentimental and Guru Maharaj would have seen through this thin layer.
I haven’t developed love for Krishna but somehow a seed has sprouted in my dry and barren heart which is strange because usually in a dry place only a cactus grows. So I wonder what is this little green sprout doing in my heart, may be it is a weed only. But this weed is giving me all sort of troubles. And in last few months a small flower has grown on this weed, this flower is regret, my regret of ignoring Krishna for so many lifetimes and this flower smells of longingness and anxiety for Krishna. Both the flower and its smell are troubling my heart everyday.
What is my response ?
I am trying to give all sorts of lame excuses to my own self. Oh ! I will do this once my responsibilities are over, one day I am going to serve temple full time, one day I will preach and so on and on, all plans for future nothing at present. I want to serve Krishna but at my own convenience and milestones! Sometimes I think that I am more eager to serve my office and my family than Krishna.
And giving wind to the fire of all my material desires is the praise I hear from few devotees, outside I may say “it is Guru Maharaj’s causeless mercy” but some portion of my heart relishes it and rejoices in it thinking “it’s me, I must be doing something right”. I have learnt the art of how mask my feelings with an outward show of humility.
What is the proof?
The proof is my indifference towards Holy Name, my indifference towards serving vaishnavas.
This helpless condition where my heart wants to hear only Krishna and what I am forced to do overwhelms me more often than not. Sometimes, completely overwhelmed, I feel like raising my arms up in the air and cry for Krishna, cry so loud that my throat muscles bust. Alas! I am unable to do it. Many a times I feel like crying out aloud in front of deities at home while doing evening kirtana but no tears come out.
The only time I get close it is when I am among devotees and in a kirtana. It’s a new love and feeling which has developed inside me despite my lack of interest in Kirtana earlier.
Right now I am coming back after attending the temple Marjanam at our centre, I felt so close to Lord Jagnnath. Somewhere inside me I know that He was pleased but the ‘connections’ faded away minutes after the service is over.
What’s the solution ?
It’s obvious isn’t it ? Attend more Kirtan in the association of senior devotees and do more service at the center. As luck would have it my dear friend Shyamsundar Prabhuji called up today afternoon and told me about a service which the local centre needs! Such is the mercy of Lord and His devotes that they are more eager for me to come closer to Krishna then I wish.
I am copying this wonderful song called Kabe Ha’be Bolo by Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura and pray at feet of all the Vaishnavas that one day I too develop at this longing for the Holy Name, for Nityananda Prabhu’s lotus feet, for Navadvipa Dhama and for preaching.
kabe ha’be bolo se-dina āmār
(āmār) aparādha ghuci’, śuddha nāme ruci,
kṛpā-bale ha’be hṛdoye sañcār
(When, O when, will that day be mine? When will you give me your blessings, erase all my offences and give my heart a taste [ruci] for chanting the Holy Name in purity?)
tṛṇādhika hīna, kabe nije māni’,
sahiṣṇutā-guṇa hṛdoyete āni’
sakale mānada, āpani amānī,
ho’ye āswādibo nāma-rasa-sār
(When will I taste the essence of the Holy Name, feeling myself to be lower than the grass, my heart filled with tolerance? When will I give respect to all others and be free from desire for respect from them?)
dhana jana āra, kobitā-sundarī,
bolibo nā cāhi deho-sukha-karī
janme-janme dāo, ohe gaurahari!
ahaitukī bhakti caraṇe tomār
(When will I cry out that I have no longer any desire for wealth and followers, poetry and beautiful women, all of which are meant just for bodily pleasure? O Gaura Hari! Give me causeless devotional service [bhakti] to your lotus feet, birth after birth.)
(kabe) korite śrī-kṛṣṇa-nāma uccāraṇa,
pulakita deho gadgada bacana
baibarṇya-bepathu ha’be saṅghaṭana,
nirantara netre ba’be aśru-dhār
(When will my body be covered with goose bumps and my voice broken with emotion as I pronounce Krishna’s name? When will my body change colour and my eyes flow with endless tears as I chant?)
kabe navadwīpe, suradhunī-taṭe,
gaura-nityānanda boli’ niṣkapaṭe
nāciyā gāiyā, berāibo chuṭe,
bātulera prāya chāriyā bicār
(When will I give up all thought of the world and society to run like a madman along the banks of the Ganges in Navadvipa, singing and dancing and sincerely calling out the names of Gaura and Nityananda?)
kabe nityānanda, more kori ‘doyā,
chārāibe mora viṣayera māyā
diyā more nija-caraṇera chāyā,
nāmera hāṭete dibe adhikār
(When will Nityananda Prabhu be merciful to me and deliver me from the enchantment [maya] of the sense objects? When will he give me the shade of his lotus feet and the right to enter the market place [nama-hatta] of the Holy Name?)
kinibo, luṭibo, hari-nāma-rasa,
nāma-rase māti’ hoibo bibaśa
rasera rasika-caraṇa paraśa,
koriyā mojibo rase anibār
(When will I buy, borrow or steal the ecstasies of the Holy Name? When will I lose myself in the intoxication of the Holy Name? When will I immerse myself in the nectar of the Holy Name after grasping the feet of a saint who constantly relishes the `rasa’ of devotion?)
kabe jībe doyā, hoibe udoya,
nija-sukha bhuli’ sudīna-hṛdoya
bhakativinoda, koriyā binoya,
śrī-ājñā-ṭahala koribe pracār
(When will I feel compassion for all living beings ? When will I forget my own pleasure in genuine humility? And when will I, Bhaktivinode, meekly go from door to door, preaching your message of love?)
I beg at the lotus feet of all devotees to kindly pray for me that I too develop a similar mood of prayer and develop a taste for the Holy Name and a taste to serve Mahaprabhu’s mission and His devotees unconditionally.
All glories to the Holy Name.
All glories to Sri Guru and Gauranga.
All glories to Srila Prabhupada.