Everyone who has taken human birth should have a goal in life. Life without a goal would be akin to the lives of animals – taking birth, eating, sleeping, begetting little ones and finally dying. There should be a goal. Well! What should be the life’s goal?Some have attainment of wealth as their goal; some have attainment of a high office as their goal while some have attainment of fame as their goal. Thus each one has a different goal in life.
To attain any of the above man has to strive hard. One is even pushed to committing sins in order to attain it. After attainment one is anxious to retain it. One is worried over losing it. The disgrace and sorrow faced on losing it is unbearable. Those who had earlier showered praises would begin to speak ill. People would move away. Sway over others would simply vanish. The list is endless. Even if all these do not leave us, is it not true that we have to leave them someday?
How does news such as man reaching the Mars, finding water on the Mars, finding new galaxy, etc. help a dying man? One should not forget that we have to face death someday. So, what goal should one have? One can hold attainment of God as his goal.
All that we do viz. meditation (dhyana), chanting the Divine Name (namajapa), Yoga, Self-enquiry (atma vichara) for attaining God will never go in vain. One has to attain the Lord: if not in this birth God has to be attained in some birth. One has to do sadhana (spiritual practice) in that birth, is it not? Better late than never. When one is afflicted with a disease all that we can do is to admit him in a hospital for treatment. It is the doctor who has to discharge and send him back home. Similarly, until we attain the state of liberation we have to be born again and again, and meet with death. Further, this human birth has been given by the Lord only to erase out the sins earned over several births; this is truly a boon given by the Lord.
We may bathe in holy rivers, worship deities, perform charitable deeds, practice spiritual austerities, listen to divine stories and do namakirtan. But along with these if we also commit sins what can the Lord do?
Out of sheer mercy, God would bestow on us the birth of a creature with limited faculty viz. those possessing one to five senses, as, in these births while one enjoys the results of merits and demerits one does not add to his list of sins. This is because new karmas do not accrue but only the effects of already done karmas get erased out.
Anything done for attaining the Lord is pleasurable. And that too Bhagavata dharma is very enjoyable. Listening to stories, reading (parayana), worship (puja), singing hymns (kirtans), celebrating festivals (utsav), are all simply blissful. If one performs these in the prescribed manner, incessantly, one will experience bliss now and here. This is called ‘yoga ananda’.
We lose nothing even if human birth comes to an end before we attain God, i.e. even before we complete our spiritual austerities (sadhana). Latent imprints (vasanas) reduce to the extent of our sadhana. Subsequently, the number of births accruing also reduces. Is this not good? It is indeed blissful if we complete our sadhana in this birth itself and attain God. Can anything be more blissful? We will attain the purpose of our birth. Therefore, let us have only attainment of God as verily our goal.
Let us follow the easy path of Bhagavata Dharma from amidst several paths to attain God. Let us be clear and have no confusion whatsoever. Even if, at times, we tire out let us hang on to the Lord and remove the fatigue. It does not matter how many times we fall but let us rise up with new vigor and passion. If kept idle the mind wanders about; let us let the mind wander in the Divine Name (Nama). Let us give up lethargy. Let us, gradually, give up desires and attachments. Giving up self-praise let us praise Krishna. Let us, as far as possible, move with discrimination and be practical.
Let us take the oath ‘I will not live and die like an ordinary worm; I shall certainly attain the Lord with His Grace’. Let us always depend on Krishna’s compassion. Would the Lord who fulfills even the worldly prayers of people look askance at this prayer of ours? Has He not created us only to attain Him?
We shall never fall if we constantly chant Hari Nama (the Divine Name ‘Hari’). This is certain.
Nalla Hari, Chennai, India
Reproduced from MadhuraMurali magazine, English edition Feb 2016