Friday, April 25, 2008

Ritual or Spiritual?




I am constantly being tested by my senses and mind. I find that I am unable to pass the tests when I am not sincerely praying to the Lord. As previously posted, we are in Jihad with ourselves. Because we want to enjoy separately from Krishna we are cast into an endless ocean of sufferings. Now, someone will retort saying, "Just see how your God punishes you! He wants you to serve Him and Him only and if you want some enjoyment then He throws you away."
Actually, the person who makes these kinds of statements are those who are completely immersed in sense gratification. They want to be able to lord it over the material elements. This is Krishna's mercy. He sends us away to show that we want something lower. We want something material rather than spiritual. People do not know who God is or the relationships that God has with His servants. The relationship is very intimate and deep. It's not something we can understand through intellect or austerity. It's something that has to be realized. Realization means, God bestowing causeless mercy upon you to understand truths that will never be understood through the material senses.
Yes, the material world is a place of suffering. War, famine, natural disasters, financial difficulties, old age, disease, and finally death. In the spiritual world, there is nothing but pure bliss that increases eternally. We chose to try to enjoy something that cannot last over something that gets better forever.
Yesterday was a great day of surrender for me. I really prayed to Krishna, like my daughter cries out for us when she needs something. Krishna reciprocates with our sincerity. Is our sincerity spiritual or ritual? When it is ritual, it is something of lesser quality. Spiritual means you are performing your service in such a state that you are fully absorbed in pleasing Guru and Krishna and not rushing through it to just get it done.
Dear Lord and Your wonderful servants please allow me to be fully absorbed.

1 comment:

David Ehler said...

After reading your comments, I began to think about the suffering and enjoyment we experience, the role Krishna plays in this, and how we should view (seeminly) negative experiences inflicted upon ourselves and those around us. I thought I would add the following quotes:

"... feelings of anger and bewilderment are due to not understanding that the Supreme Lord's mercy comes in many different ways. It is easy to accept God's mercy when we get what we want. This is like mercy coming from the front. However, when it comes from the side; it can be bewildering, and even more so when it comes from behind".

Bhakti-tirtha Swami
The Beggar IV
Die Before Dying
Page 17

Ultimatley, Krishna is our best friend and well-wisher, always finding ways to bring us closer to Him. Good or bad, I am beggining to understand that everything around us is Krishna's mercy.

"We must remind ourselves that the Lord is always finding ways to send out His love. As we remind ourselves of this, it becomes easier to take advantage of the many oppurtunities that manifest. Life is full of adventures and oppurtunities to serve humanity and glorify the Lord. When a person can accept everything as an expression of Krishna's mercy and love, nothing can be too disturbing. Every moment becomes another oppurtunity to serve humanity, worship the Supreme, and express gratitude."

Bhakti-tirtha Swami
The Beggar IV
Die Before Dying
Page 18