By An Ardent Devotee
Chinmaya Mission Australia
The legendary 10th chapter or Canto of the Srimad Bhagavatam explores the glorious exploits of Sri Krishna from before his advent to the time he leaves the Gopis to commence his life as a king and counsellor to the Pandavas. So famous are these childhood stories of Krishna that many people think that the Bhagavatam is only about Sri Krishna!
Some wonder, why should we know the childhood pranks and sports of Sri Krishna? Sure, they may be cute and entertaining for kids, but what significance do they have for me and my daily existence? Should we be really wasting our time hearing these stories that we already know?
These are all good questions, but there are equally compelling answers too. In the first instance, we should realise that these stories of Sri Krishna and all our Puranas contain meaning of an untold depth, and every time we plunge into them, we will always return with rare gems of profound wisdom. Whether we are followers of the Bhakti Marga (path of devotion), Karma Marga (path of dedicated action) or Jnaana Marga (Seekers of Knowledge), we will find all that we are looking for in these innocent-looking stories.
For a great devotee, Krishna Leela will connect his or her mind with the Lord in pure love. For such a devotee, to immerse his or her mind in the stories of God is to bathe in the unconditional love of the Lord as He showers his blessings on one and all. These stories reveal the perennial Truth to the devotee that God is always with us, in the smallest and greatest of things. In the cheeky smile of the child, in the taste of butter, in the winds and storms, in the eyes of a mother, in the care of a father, in the music of a flute, in the love of a devotee and even in the anger of the cruel – He is ever present, holding our hands and helping us along through thick and thin.
A dynamic person of action on the other hand will hear these stories and will be reminded of the selfless service that the Gopis and people of Brindavan did to serve Sri Krishna, and how the Lord inspired all the people around him to follow their duties while remembering Him always. He also showed in every action, his attitude of service and selflessness to inspire us all. For example, even though he picked up the entire Govardhan mountain to save everyone in the village, he did so without any pomp or ego and even gave credit to the little boys that helped him along the way. The dynamic karma yogi learns this attitude of service and dedicated activity through these profound exploits of the Lord.
For a seeker of Truth, these stories are contemplative indicators that point to the Reality or Pure Consciousness that dances as the life spark within. As the seeker observes the stories of Sri Krishna dancing on the 5 hooded Kaliya, he ponders over the profound philosophical import of these actions and how they reveal the Supreme dwelling as his own Self.
The point is, these are not just simple stories. They are transformative, if we know how to approach them. Sri Krishna is worshipped as the Jagatguru or universal teacher, and so we can be sure that every one of his exploits, whether stealing butter or counselling Arjuna, has profound meaning. Let us therefore be enchanted with the Lord, for in this enchantment lies our emancipation!
Be a part of the 7 day grand celebrations & Stories on Sri Krishna by Swami Swaroopananda, Regional Head, Chinmaya Mission as details below:
Venue: Sydney Bahai Centre
107, Derby Street, Silverwater, NSW – 2128
Dates: Tuesday 22nd March to Monday 28th March 2016, 7.30 pm to 9.00 pm (Please be Seated by 7.15 PM)