Association with mahatmas not only guarantees union with the Lord at the end of our earthly life, but also makes our lives better here and now. Their grace protects us in tough situations and guides us along without us even realizing it. Even when things ‘seemingly’ go wrong, our reactions and perspectives are positively influenced by this grace, to make us happy at any moment. The Guru thus orchestrates a slow but sure change in each of us meticulously.
While this subtle process is going on, mahans also show us a direct way to live in this world and interact with one another. They do this in two ways. One by being a living example and the other by imparting Divine words of wisdom not only through direct upadesa, but also through discourses and kirtans.
In one such kirtan, Sri Sri Muralidhara Swamiji talks about how to lead our lives in this world in accordance with what pleases Sri Krishna. He says, among many things, “kannindha sorkalal Kannan maghizhgindraan” (Krishna becomes happy when one uses soft and pleasing words) and “anbu ondrinaal Kannan maghizhgindraan”(With pure love alone, Krishna becomes happy.)
Human relationships are built on the foundation of love. Don’t we love those who are loving and always speak softly? Why is that? It is simply because the Krishna present within each one of us as the antaryami, becomes happy when He hears pleasing words and feels the love. He then reflects a speck of that Happiness through our personality. Hence we feel happy.
Love is the one emotion that captures everyone—be he the greatest king or the smallest child. Bhishmacharya was a yogishwara, a great warrior and the epitome of truthfulness. He could choose his time of passing, and above all the Lord Himself came to His death bed to give His darshan and accept him. Yet Bhishma thought of the Gopis, who are the very personification of love, during his last moment.
Even in today’s world, we see that people love dogs that are often not practically useful around the house, but on the other hand, treat a bull—that toils all day in the hot sun—with little emotion. Why? It is simply because a dog can show us the love, but the bull does not.
We all aim to win—be it arguments, the best deals in the market, or even intangibles like friendships and favors. But somewhere along the way, we have forgotten how to accomplish that and instead scramble while trying all possible shortcuts in the book. All but the simplest shortcut of love.
So can we turn around years of vasanas (impressions) to start loving just like that? Can we coach love? While it is true that love must flower from within, mahatmas assure that by observing ourselves in conversations, by watching what and how we talk, a gradual change is certain. The mind behaves when we observe it!
If the presence of a mere camera in a traffic signal can prevent people from running red lights, can one question the power of observation? Similarly, merely being observant of our words and acts, with the true conscience as the judge, will bring about the change. Over time, mahatmas assure, we will win the hearts of all around us because our words will be pleasant, our actions will be pleasant, our thoughts will be pleasant – just the way Krishna likes it.
– Sriram Ramanujam, Houston, TX
Based on the discourses of HH Sri Sri Muralidhara Swamiji