Let Krishna Take Charge - Part 3

Hare Krishna Prabhujis and Matajis,
Please accept my humble obeisances! All glories to Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev! 

This is in continuation of the previous offerings transcribing the wonderful class by HG Devakinandan Prabhuji in Abu Dhabi on Srimad Bhagavatam verse 4.20.31. 

In the last offering, we saw that the reason we are not peaceful and really happy is that we are separated (khanditah) from Krishna as we chose to be independent. Because of this we are unable to have darshan of Krishna and so if we want to have darshan of Krishna, the first thing we must start to do is to: 

a) Completely depend on Krishna and then 
b) Be in line with Krishna 

The other point we have to understand and practice in order not to be separated from Krishna is not to run after material happiness and we shall see that in this offering.

c) Not to run after material happiness: Prthu Maharaj in this prayer in Bhagavatam says that "the thing that separates me from You is when I become too much attached to society, friendship and love." These are the three things that everybody is looking out for. But they don’t realize that by running after these material items, they don't become happy. Factually speaking, the material solutions are very often worse than the material problems themselves. Prahlada Maharaj says, 'duhkhaushadam tad api duhkham'. Prahlada Maharaj makes a very wonderful observation that anytime we try to run after material happiness, we do not realize that an equal and if not more of material misery is just coming next door. We don't realize that. We think that every time we find a solution to any problem we have, if it is not with Krishna, that problem will become worse than the problem itself. In Srimad Bhagavatam 7.7.42, Prahlada Maharaj says: 

sukhāya duḥkha-mokṣāya saṅkalpa iha karmiṇaḥ
sadāpnotīhayā duḥkham anīhāyāḥ sukhāvṛtaḥ

In this material world, every materialist desires to achieve happiness and diminish his distress, and therefore he acts accordingly. Actually, however, one is happy as long as one does not endeavor for happiness; as soon as one begins his activities for happiness, his conditions of distress begin.

This verse we should remember. Why? Because Prahlada Maharaj makes a very very important observation. He says every materialist in the world, what is he looking for? Every materialist in this world desires to achieve material happiness and frankly speaking, we also have come to Krishna consciousness because we want find some happiness and there is nothing wrong in trying to find happiness. Bhagavatam tells us that there are only two kinds of people who do not want to be happy in this world. One must be a mad man and second must be a dead man because only dead people will not be able to say that they want to be happy. If we ask anybody in this world, 'what is the aim of your life?', finally after telling all his/her ambitions and everything finally he/she will end by only one point, that he/she wants to be happy. There is no one in this world who does not want to be happy. So everybody wants happiness. But Prahlada Maharaj says the materialist who does not want Krishna, he thinks that he can achieve happiness and by doing so he can diminish his distress. He thinks that 'By being happy I will be less sad.' But Prahlada Maharaj says, as long as we do not endeavor for material happiness, we are happy. As long as we do not desire to run after material happiness, up to that time, we are actually happy, which means that the moment we begin our activities for happiness, Bhagavatam tells us, that day our conditions of distress begin. This is a secret. Not many people actually contemplate on this point. The day we start trying to be happy in this world separately from Krishna, that day all our problems begin. The day we start our life, always seeing the hand of Krishna, on that day, material happiness and material distress, they won't touch us. Only peace and bliss are there in devotional service.

There is a nice example from the shastras. There was one brahmana. He wanted to go for the yatra. So he was going up the hill and the temple was at the top. So as he goes up the hill, he is praying to Lord Ram, "My dear Lord, it is very difficult to climb up. I am very tired. So please help me, my Lord. Try and find some way so that I don't have to climb. Please arrange some transport." Krishna is very kind. So before the brahmana made a turn, suddenly the brahmana saw a merchant bringing a horse. The merchant was not seated on the horse but was bringing the horse with him. The merchant looked at the brahmana and said, "My dear brahmana, you must be tired. So perhaps it will be better if you can take this horse and then you can go up." Brahmana said, "Krishna is very kind. I asked and He has immediately given." So he thanked the merchant and took the horse. As he was going, just hardly 100 metres he has moved, suddenly the horse stopped and refused to move. So the brahmana got down and thought why is the horse not moving? "How am I to make it move?" Then he realized when he looked closely that the horse was not a male horse but a female one and it was just about to give birth. That is why the merchant was offloading the horse. The brahmana thought that the merchant was very kind but the merchant had another idea. So now before he knew it, the female horse gave birth and there was a baby horse. Now the female horse refused to move because the mother won't move without the child. So the brahmana was thinking, how do I get the horse to move so that I can get on the horse and eventually go on the yatra. Thinking and thinking, he decided to carry the baby and walk in front of the mother. The mother will look at the baby and start walking. When the mother starts walking we can achieve some aim. So he carries the baby and walks a few metres and what happens? The horse moves. Brahmana becomes very happy. Ah! The horse is moving now! And he moves like this all the way till the end of the yatra. In the end, he stops and puts down the baby horse and the brahmana thinks, "I started this pilgrimage to see the Lord. Half the way through, I decided a little bit of material happiness and comfort won't hurt. The material happiness and comfort came in the form of the horse. But instead of solving my problem, it added to my problem. Foolishly, I did not remember Krishna on the way in the yatra. I was thinking about what was the solution to make the horse move, forgetting the solution was actually to take darshan of the Lord. And in the end, I was not only walking all the way up but I had the added burden of carrying another horse." 

This is the foolishness of our living conditions that we complicate our life so much to that point that instead of actually remembering the goal, we become destructive by so many things. Bhagavatam tells us that by the time we come back to understand what the goal of life is, the time is up. But that time Krishna is forgotten. We become remorseful, we regret, and unfortunately because of friendship, love, and society, again we forget Krishna and again we continue. This is our foolishness. So this friendship, love, and society they are helpful to the extent they are used in the service of Krishna. That is why Prthu Maharaj said that if we have our families, in whatever station of life we may be, the important thing now we should ask ourselves when we leave today is, 'How am I seeing the hand of Krishna in my life, how have I included Krishna in my life, and not how I have been separated from Krishna'. The moment there is separation, the material happiness engulfs us and with material happiness, the conditions of distress they all start. So that is the first point of the verse that we should be very careful not to separate ourselves from Krishna.

Prabhuji went on to explain the second part of the verse and that is allowing Krishna to take charge and the same shall be transcribed and offered in the ensuing mail, Krishna willing.

Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudev,
Vaijayantimala devi dasi, 
Abu Dhabi.