Thursday, October 04, 2007

Story 47 – Story of Destroying Indra’s pride – 06

Krishna continued:

We are people who do the karma of looking after cows. That which sustains the cows and us is the forest (vanam). Therefore we have to worship cows, brahmanas and the mountains (which is part of the forest and helps in our protection etc.).


We worship people or things that sustain us and help us in survival. It is for this reason that we worship the ultimate reality of Lord because the Lord sustains and helps us in our survival or our life itself. We are living only because of the ultimate reality of Lord as the substratum of Consciousness in each one of us which helps us in living. If not for the conscious principle of Lord in us, we will not be alive or experiencing the illusory world as well. Thus we worship the Lord who is behind our very existence in this illusory world.

We also worship the Lord because the Lord is the substratum in which the illusory world is perceived. Not only is the illusory world perceived in the world but the illusion of Ego or one’s own association with body, things and people is based and dependent on the reality of Lord. If not for the Lord as the indwelling Self in all beings and the substratum of the illusion of world, we will not be living and experiencing things in the world.

Krishna here says that gokula was sustained by cows and the forest. This is not just the case with gokula but with the world as well. Though ancient seers worshipped everything as a manifestation of the ultimate reality of Lord, few things have the presence of Lord more than other things. Though air is present everywhere, we feel the cool breeze only under the shades of a tree and not directly under the Sun. Similarly the presence of the Lord though is available everywhere can be felt only in certain things in the world. Cows are worshipped as the manifestation of Lord because everything out of the cow is useful for humans. The cow’s milk is used as liquid to sustain the prana in beings. Even the cow’s dung is used for many things including the sacred ash or bhashma which saiva bhakthas swear in their body. Thus the cow is fully useful for human beings and it sacrifices its essence of milk as well as the body for the welfare of the beings in the world. Thus we should worship the cow as the reality of Lord that sustains us at the empirical level.

Forest is yet another empirical entity that helps in our sustenance. It is very well known that by cutting of trees we are lacking oxygen and purification of air (removal of carbon dioxide). Thus forests help in many things including purification of air as well as fire, materials made of wood, keeping surroundings cool etc. Thus we have to worship forest as well as the manifestation of the reality of Lord.

Even as milk is the essence of the cow yet we get milk only when we milk the right place. Similarly though the Lord is manifested in everything, yet we can feel the presence of Lord only in certain things like cow and forest which helps in sustenance of life. Hence we need to worship these rather than the various Gods who don’t directly help in our sustenance.

Let us worship everything in the world as a manifestation of the ultimate reality of Lord so that we may get rid of the notion that duality is real and gain the knowledge that everything is the Lord alone thereby ever rejoicing in the bliss inherent in the Lord as one’s own Self.

Krishna continued:

We can do another Yaaga with the material collected for Indrayaaga. We can cook various meals for the same. Let the brahmanas start homa along with chanting of mantras. We can offer bali (offering) to Govardhana Parvatha alone with dakshina to the so-called low castes of chandaala etc. This is my opinion. If you feel that this right, we can start it right away.


A realized saint is a person who is not affected by activities. He is also not bound by actions in the form of “do these actions” and “don’t do these actions”. This is because the jnaani sees everything as mere names and forms of Brahman. Whatever he does is an offering to the ultimate reality of Lord whether it is action in the form of doing pooja or action in the form of sensual pleasures or even sleeping.

Sankara beautifully proclaims this in Siva Maanasa Pooja:

Aatma tvam girija matih sahacharaah pranaah shareeram graham
Pooja te vishaya upabhoga rachanaa nidraa samaadhi sthithih
Sanchaarah padayoh pradakshina vidhih stotraani sarvaagirah
Yad yad karma karomi tad tad akhilam shambho tava aaraadhanam

O Siva, you are my Self. Parvathi Devi (your wife) is my intellect. The prana are your friends (people surrounding you and serving you). My body is the house where you stay. All sensual pleasures or enjoyment are pooja for you. Sleep is the state of Samadhi. My walking is your pradakshina. My words are stotras (praises of you). Thus whatever actions I do all those are your worship O Shambhu.

Karacharana kritham vaa kaayajam karmajam vaa
Sravana nayanajam vaa maanasam vaa aparaadham
Vihitham avihitham vaa sarvam etat kshamasva
Jaya jaya karunaabdhe sree mahadeva shambho

Whether actions and faults are done through the hands and legs, through the body, through ears or eyes or mind; whether I do prescribed or prohibited actions O Shambhu please forgive my sins, may you always hail.

Thus a jnaani does all actions remembering the ultimate reality of Lord and offering it to the Lord. Here we find in Krishna a perfect example of how a jnaani will be living in the world. Krishna was unperturbed by whether he was speaking against one of the cowboys or about Brahma or about Vishnu. He was unaffected by his activities as he was ever immersed in contemplation of the Lord with the knowledge that everything is only an illusion in the reality of Lord. Thus he spoke the truth though it was against none other than Indra.

Only a jnaani will be able to speak openly and frankly even though it might affect even the President of United States. This is because jnaani is bothered about the outcome of his actions as whatever be the actions they are merely offered to the ultimate reality of Lord. Same is the case with a bhaktha who is ever immersed in contemplation of the Lord and who sees nothing other than the Lord thereby acting as if being drunk.

Thus through Krishna’s open, frank and clear words Bhagavatham is telling that we should see things in an impartial way and be unaffected by the outcomes of the actions. Since this can be done only through offering everything to the Lord with the knowledge that the Lord alone exists here, therefore we have always remember that the Lord alone exists here and thereby offer all actions to the Lord.

Let us all have knowledge along with surrender so that we may offer all actions as a pooja to the ultimate reality of Lord thereby be unaffected by the outcomes of the actions and ever rejoicing in bliss which is the very nature of Lord.

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