Forging Your Destiny
His Divine Grace Om Vishnupad
[Noise in the audience. One of the devotees asks them not to speak so loud.]
Leave them, Prabhu. Not everybody comes to practise Krishna consciousness. Some come to goggle, some come for entertainment. There are different kinds of desires. Everybody does not have the same desires. That is why, we cannot bring everyone to this path. Those who have such fortune, who are destined to come, they come.
You know there is a famous saying in Bengali that people like to sing, "There are many conch bangles and sindur sold at the marketplace, but only those are destined get to wear them (হাটে বাজারে শাঁখা সিঁদুর অনেক পাওয়া যায় কপালে থাকলে পরে তবেই পরা যায়)." Here too, one must have the fortune. Gurudev told that there is an annual fair in Jamalpur where people sacrifice goats, and so many thousands of goats are given for sacrifice that the slaughters do not even give one minute time—as soon as a goat is brought, they chop off its head. Not all goats are destined to have sindur on their heads [goats' heads are smeared with sindur as part of the ritual]. Gurudev said that they cut thousands of goats at that fair—a goat a second—and smear sindur on all the sacrificial goats' heads. We too are sacrificial goats, but we do not get to have our heads smeared with sindur [we do not get picked out].
Not everybody can understand the glory of a holy dham. It takes a great fortune to know it. People come here to do all these other things: everybody is chanting, "Hari bol! Hari bol!" but who takes it seriously? Who take Krishna consciousness seriously? Who will think, "This is my vrata [vow]! Krishna consciousness is my vow." Who will think, "Without Krishna consciousness this life is useless"? "I have got this human body, but this body is useless if I do not practise Krishna consciousness. The Lord has sent me into this human body, but if I do not practise Krishna consciousness, then it is useless to keep this body—my life is useless."
দিন যায় মিছা কাজে নিশা নিদ্রাবশে ।
dina yaya michha kaje nisa nidra-base
My days are passed in useless work and nights are wasted on sleeping. It never occurs to me that there is death sitting next to me.
('Durlabha manava janma labhiya' by Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur)
We sing every morning,
জীবন অনিত্য জানহ সার
jivana anitya janaha sara
"Understand the essence: life is temporary and filled with all sorts of adversity. Carefully taking shelter of the Name, engage in your work."
(Gitavali, Arunodaya kirtan, 1.3, by Srila Bhakti Vinod Thakur)
This life is not eternal. You will face so many dangers in this life, but amidst all these dangers you must take shelter of the Holy Name—engage your own self in the service of the Lord. We are told to take shelter of the Holy Name. The Lord is very merciful. If you have a strong desire and if you try, the Lord must certainly bestow His mercy. It is necessary to have a strong desire, it is necessary to have faith. You must try; otherwise, you will not get any result. Mother Yasoda tied Krishna! Because of her tireless effort, she could bind Him. She kept bringing more and more rope, but it was always two fingers too short. What do these 'two fingers' mean? One finger is desire, and the other finger is mercy. We must make effort to practise Krishna consciousness. You cannot practise Krishna consciousness without making effort. You must keep practising, you must keep trying. This is Krishna consciousness.
There are nine kinds of devotion: sravanam, kirtanam, smaranam, pada-sevanam, archanam, vandanam, dasyam, sakhyam, atma-nivedanam—hearing, chanting, remembering the Lord, serving the Lord's lotus feet, worshipping the Deity of the Lord, offering obeisance, rendering service as a servitor, as a friend, and self-submission. You must practise this every day.
সাধুসঙ্গে কৃষ্ণনামে—এই মাত্র চাই ।
sadhu-sange krsna-nama—ei matra chai
I desire only to chant the Name of Krishna in the association of the sadhus. There is no other way to conquer samsara.
(Sri Sri Prema-vivarta, 6.13)
The Lord does not embrace (gets hold of) someone so easily, but if the Lord embraces someone, He does not let them go. Think about it—the Lord is so merciful! You cannot even conceive of it. Krishna has bestowed so much mercy. Sisupal went to kill Krishna, Putana went to kill Krishna, but they all received Krishna's mercy.
Everybody knows it is a crime to kill a man, but it is an even worse crime to kill a baby; and demoness Putana went to kill a three-days-old baby. Being sent by Kamsa, she had smeared poison on her breast, but because she came dressed as a beautiful gopi, seeing her beauty Krishna became charmed. She came to kill Krishna, but Krishna saw her beauty and became charmed—He took her as His mother and drank her breast milk. He showed that He had started to drink her milk, but He knew that it was not a mother, it was just a demoness who came disguised as a mother, so He drank her milk in such a way that Putana started to cry, "Leave me! Leave me!" But Krishna did not leave her. He grabbed her so strongly that she was about to die. In a frenzy, she ran out to a nearby field in Gokula, where, revealing her enormous form, she fell down dead. Because her body was so huge and nobody could move it, they had to cut it into four pieces. How can we know that Krishna bestowed His mercy on her? Think about it. Do you get any good smell when you burn somebody's body? On the contrary, you get very bad smell. However, when they were burning Putana's body, her body emanated the smell of camphor in all four directions. There was so much good smell coming all over Gokula that it could be felt all the way in Vrindavan as well. Everybody wondered, "What has happened? What is this? What is this nice smell?" Then somebody said they were burning Putana. The Lord bestowed His mercy to her...
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