Qualification for Devotional Service - Part 4

Qualification for Devotional Service - Part 4

Date
Author
Narahari Krishna Das

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

This is in continuation of the previous topic titled, "Qualification for Devotional service", wherein we saw that no material qualification is necessary for doing devotional service. The Lord only sees the sincere desire of the devotee to serve Him and reciprocates accordingly. The below pastime brings out this point very nicely.

Once a muslim merchant who was a seller of stones and diamonds reached Mathura for his trade. At that time, a devotee was giving Bhagavatam class on the 10th canto in Mathura where he explained the beauty of Lord Krishna. He explained how Mother Yashoda used to decorate Lord Krishna and send Him to forest for herding the cows. When the merchant heard the beauty of the Lord, he became very attracted and wanted to see the Lord in person. After the class was over, he went to the speaker and asked, "Where I can find this Kannaiyah (Lord Krishna)?" The speaker answered, "You can see Him in Vrindavan." Immediately the merchant just left the box of jewels and stones in his hand and started running towards Vrindavan. On reaching Vrindavan, he asked many people on the way about Lord Krishna, he was directed to Srinathji temple which is located near the Govardhan Hill. The merchant ran there and tried to enter the temple with a strong desire to see the Lord. But since he was in muslim attire, the security people thought him as mleccha and stopped him from entering the temple and pushed him out. But the merchant did not give up. He just sat near the bank of Yamuna river and kept on crying, "I want to see Kannaiyah." This went on for 9 days. He became tired and weak due to lack of food and water, but his crying did not stop. 

At that time, the temple was managed by Vittalanatha who was son of Sri Vallabhacharya (a great exponent of devotional service and founder of Vallabha sampradaya) and a great devotee himself. The devotees and the security guards who saw this merchant crying constantly went to Vittalanatha and informded him.  Vittalanatha immediately ran towards Yamuna river and saw the merchant crying and asked him, "What do you want and why are you crying like this?" The merchant could not get up and walk due to his weakness. He limped slowly towards Vittalanatha and fell at his feet and said, "I want to see Kannaiyah." Vittalanatha was moved to tears by his strong desire to see the Lord. He picked him up and embraced him saying, "One who calls you a mleccha is actually a mleccha. You need not wait even a moment from now. Please take bath in Yamuna and come. I will give you brahma sambandha (process of spiritual initiation according to Vallabha sampradaya) and make you a formal Vaishnava." After the merchant took bath Vittalanath initiated him and said, "Since you are the fountain head of Bhakti rasa, I give you the name Rasa Khan." Rasa Khan later composed wonderful poems on the glory of the Lord and they are famous till today. In this pastime, we see that Rasakhan was disqualified by birth or he did not have any knowledge of scripture from childhood. But he had a strong desire to see the Lord and serve Him. So the Lord broke all the barriers and gave him the shelter of His pure devotee. Rasakhan was having a desire which is intense and unwavering and that gave him the determination which attracted the mercy of Vittalanatha (spiritual master) and Sri Nathji. 

Once I was complaining about the problems I am having in my family life which is causing slack in my spiritual life to our beloved spiritual master H H Mahavishnu Goswami Maharaj. Maharaj after listening to everything said, "You have only one problem. That you do not have desire to become devotee. This problem you have to solve. All other problems can be handled later." 

I pray at the lotus feet of our beloved Gurudeva, Srila Prabhupada and the Supreme Lord so that I will develop a genuine desire for devotional service.

Thank you very much.
Yours in service of Srila Prabhupada and Srila Gurudeva,
Narahari Krishna dasa,
Chennai.