Govinda’s Family – Govindanukku Aatpatta Kudumbamamma 4

This series was originally published in Tamil MadhuraMurali monthly magazine in India, as a 12-part series. Based on Sri Swamiji’s Madhurageetham, “Govindanukku Aatpatta Kudumbamamma Engal Kudumbam”, it speaks beautifully of how the family members of our satsang lead/need to lead their lives.

This is the translation of the fourth article in this series. Click here for
Part 1 – Govinda, the Beautiful One
Part 2 – Leading a Life Beholden to Govinda
Part 3 – Everything is Indeed His Will

How We – As Govinda’s Family – Live!

Govindanukku Aatpatta Kudumbamamma… #4

(We saw the beautiful way in which satsang families, understanding that leading a life of servitude to Govinda and to Guru Maharaj is the path to real peace, live in the household, do good deeds, and lead a blissful life. Now…)

bhAgavatha kadhai kETTiDuvOm, 
rAgathALatthuDan pADiDuvOm  
shOkamOga paDamATTOm, 
nAgarIgamAy pazhagiDuvOm || gOvindanukku ||

Considering that “Everything is His will”, we live happily without worrying. The reason for worries in life are only these three right? – regretting the past, worrying and fearing about future events wondering “what will the future hold?”, and in the present, engaging in improper matters.

Mulling constantly about the past and not having the maturity to be in a state of acceptance (which means thinking “what has happened has happened, now what can I do about it?”) – this is only sorrow (shOka); the purpose of our life is freeing ourselves from the cycle of birth and death by leading a simple, beautiful way of life, and doing bhakti to Govinda – forgetting this, and instead getting attracted by unnecessary things and trying hard to attain those, is indeed infatuation (mOha); worrying thoughts about what the future will hold – worries that take hold of us when we do not have staunch faith in Govinda, is indeed fear (bhaya). What is the medicine for this triad of sorrow-infatuation-fear (shOka-mOha-bhayam)? This is shown beautifully by Srimad Bhagavatam:

yasyAm vai shrUyamANAyAm krishNE paramapUrushE |
bhaktirutpadyatE pumsah shOkamOhabhayApahA ||
SB 1.7.7

When we listen to the katha of Srimad Bhagavatam blessed by Sri Vyasa Bhagavan, we will develop bhakti towards Govinda. With the dawn of bhakti, its children jnana and vairagya will also dawn immediately. With the rise of jnana, sorrow will disappear; with the rise of vairagyam, infatuation will disappear; and with the rise of bhakti, fear will disappear; just like with the rise of the sun, mist disappears completely without trace. This is why Sri Swamiji has blessed with the words, “bhAgavatha kadhai kETTiDuvOm, rAgathALatthuDan pADiDuvOm.”  (We shall listen to Bhagavata Katha, and sing joyfully in tune.)

To obtain the complete fruit of listening to katha, he sings in another Madhurageetham,

kadaiyil kETTadai karutthinil koNDu  (Contemplate on what you heard in the katha)
manadil ninaitthu kIrtthanam pADu  (Think of it in your heart and sing His glories)
gnAna bhakthi virakthi vaLartthu  (To grow jnana, bhakti and virakti)
thurIya nilaiyai duridatthil aDaiya… (And attain the highest state very soon…)
kadai kELu kadai kELu…” (Listen, listen, listen always to the stories of Sri Hari)

It is this same thing that Govinda also tells as upadesa to Uddhava:

shraddhAmrita-kathAyAm me shashvan mad-anukIrtanam

In the Ekadasa skandam it says that, “We need to have shraddha in Srimad Bhagavatam, which is the nectarine stories of Govinda, listen to it, and immediately tell the katha (repeat) of what we heard.” 

If we listen to katha like this, and do kirtanam of it, we will develop smarana bhakti of Govinda, and because it develops along with jnana and vairagya, “shoka moha padamaattom” (we will not get shoka-moha) says the Madhurageetham. Since we adopt a simple, beautiful way of life without shoka-moha-bhayam, this kirtanam says, “nAgareegamAga pazhagiDuvOm” (We will move with others in a cultured manner.)

Having affection for everyone in the satsang, and living like one family, we move with everyone understanding that our connection is with Guru-Govinda. We have the maturity to engage with others without speaking ill of or gossiping about anybody, without talking worldly matters unnecessarily with anyone, without allowing selfish notions such as ‘What do I stand to gain from them?’ to raise its hood in our mind, without involving ourselves in the personal matters of others’ lives, without analyzing the positives and negatives of others, speaking and interacting only as much as needed.

We understand that interactions with others is for satsang and Bhagavat vishayam only. People are all not alike. We move with each person in a measured way accordingly. For some people, showing affection by saying Radhe Radhe with a pleasant face is sufficient. With some people, speaking of Bhagavat vishayam for a few minutes is appropriate; with some others, inviting them home once and conducting satsang will be the right thing to do; with yet others, moving with them for a week for a Bhagavata saptaham will be good. The Guru alone is the Atmabandhu who does only good for us at all times and in all circumstances. 

Understanding all of this, we move with everyone. It is this that Sri Swamiji has succinctly shown sweetly as “nAgarIgamAy pazhagiDuvOm.”

“bhAgavatha kadhai kETTiDuvOm, rAgathALatthuDan pADiDuvOm  
shOkamOga paDamATTOm, nAgarIgamAy pazhagiDuvOm || gOvindanukku ||”

The flower shall bloom further…


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